I am pretty sure I know the reason why so many Republican members of Congress and so many evangelical Christians are putting up with President Trump. And, for some, not just putting up with him, but twisting themselves in knots to explain their support of him. The reason is they are getting what they most want. Conservative judges and justices who will shape the judiciary and with that the framework for our lives for a generation. To achieve that goal they are silent in the face obvious lies and the public shaming of others and turn a blind eye to abuse and infidelity and an expectation of a basic morality which, if were another person, would elicit their outrage and public condemnation. And because they can, in order to get what they want, they change the rules and change their story and trample on accepted norms and practices.
After all, they tell themselves and whisper to each other, the ends justify the means.
But there is a cost.
The politicization of our courts.
The growing distrust of our elected officials and our form of government.
Seeing the hypocrisy, people turning their backs on religious traditions and institutions.
A deepening divide in our country and in our neighborhoods.
Others have probably said it, but I first came upon it in college when I was studying the independence movement in India lead by the lawyer, Mohandas Gandhi. He rejected the notion of the ends justifying the means. Instead, he said, the tactics you use to achieve your goals are as crucial as the goals themselves. If you believe your goals are honorable how you achieve your goals must also be honorable. If you believe your goals holy the means you use to achieve your goals must also be holy. If they are not, the goal you desire will be tarnished.
They may very well get what they want, but the damage has already been done.
To their reputations.
To their integrity.
To our communities.
To our country.