John Lewis was a man in the extreme opposite of a man like Donald Trump. Lewis was self-made and driven since childhood to promote peace, justice, life, and equality for all people. He did not worship money and possessions, he worshipped God. He was a forgiving man because he believed hatred would hold back the kind of progress the civil rights movement stood for. He marched over the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr and other civil rights leaders at the age of 17 on March 7, 1965. He was beaten by police during the march, suffered a severe head injury, and was arrested. He would go on to enter politics, becoming a member of the House of Representatives in 1987, representing Georgia’s 5th district to continue his commitment to the rule of law and to the civil rights of all Americans.
All former living Presidents have expressed sincere feelings of loss, respect, and thanks for Congressman Lewis’s contributions to our country. Barack Obama praised his legacy and expressed happiness that Lewis was able to see some of the changes he fought for become a reality. Bill Clinton praised Lewis’s lifelong commitment to fighting for justice and equality for all people. George W. Bush acknowledged how Lewis fought to make America a more perfect union by promoting liberty and standing for peace. Donald Trump’s generic tweet was typical of his response when people die; Saddened to hear of the passing of civil rights hero John Lewis. Melania and I send prayers.” In her book about the Trump family, Mary Trump, Donald’s niece, describes him as a person who cannot feel normal levels of compassion and empathy-related related to the losses and the suffering of others. She sites many examples within the dynamics of the family, where Donald reacted without compassion and self-sacrifice for others.
When confronted with issues related to black people, Trump seems awkward, showing no interest or conviction to join the fight for equality for all. As with many topics, he mouths what he is supposed to say as President, and then either do the opposite or does nothing. On the contrary, as a long history of racist rhetoric and policies that discriminate or disparage minorities. From his comments in Charlottesville to calling Mexicans rapists to calling South American countries shitholes, to referring to Black Lives Matter protesters as anarchists, to calling for the deaths of the Central Park 5 before they were even wrongly convicted, Trump has revealed how he feels about the fight for racial justice for black people.
Lewis, as a black man, fought for equality for all people but was rigorously honest about the continued inequality of justice for black Americans. At times, Trump was disrespectful to Lewis and his passionate advocacy for black equality. It was during those outbursts that the President’s racist views were blatant. Many who believe Trump is a racist feel he is concerned that showing too much respect towards accomplished blacks and their legacies will alienate his base.
Trump may know little about John Lewis’s accomplishments, both legislatively and in the civil rights movement, as his knowledge of facts about people and history are often inaccurate. This fact puts his educational achievements and intellectual capacity into question. Also, in question is his character. He idolizes men of low character such as Roger Stone, Roy Cohen, Vladimir Putin, and Congressman Jim Jordan and disparages men of high morals and patriotism like John Lewis. This pattern is a red flag that Trump is a man of low integrity.
Regarding Jordan, there is credible reporting from multiple news sources that have documented Jordan had knowledge of sexual abuse occurring by the Ohio State wrestling coach and did nothing about it. Like Trump, Jordan, Putin, Giuliani, and Stone are the aggressive, arrogant type of men that could never live up to the character of the likes of John Lewis. To hide their inadequacies and insecurities, they lie and bully their way to create a pseudo masculine image of integrity that is completely transparent.
John Lewis was the exemplary embodiment of a real man of character and courage. No scandals or divisive twitter wars we’re present in his world. He believed genuinely in his causes and in the possibility that heavenly peace and love between people could be achieved here on earth. He did ‘t believe one had to wait to die to experience the ideal of what heaven has to offer. Evangelical Christians would do better to choose a man of true faith, compassion, intelligence, and competency to follow over an abusive, opportunistic, fraudulent, criminal man whose low character and psychological problems are killing Americans and crushing the American dream of “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
Rest in peace, Congressman Lewis, an American patriot, and exemplary human being. May your legacy give Americans the motivation to fight for what is right and good by voting Donald Trump out of office. Know that your life’s work was a job well done.