It was a pretty widely used trope to invoke idolatry to criticize the support for the Obama Presidency, especially early on. So it’s not a surprise to see it come back for critique of opposition to Trump, except in this case, invoking the fall of what the believers took to be the true religion. Enter David French for some gloating:
I’m beginning to get a sense of what it was like to be alive in ancient times when a marauding warlord melted down your village’s golden calf. Weeping. Gnashing of teeth. Rending of garments. Wearing of vagina hats. Their god failed to protect the village, and now he’s a bracelet on the warlord’s wrist. It’s pathetic, really, the emotional reaction to Donald Trump’s victory, but the intensity of the emotion is nothing new. Remember the ecstasy when Barack Obama won?
So, the point is supposed to be that Obama-style liberalism was a kind of false religion — a golden calf, of sorts. Now that it’s not only fallen, but is destroyed by another, the old true believers are in shock, despair. And French takes it that it’s because these true-believers just have got the wrong religion.
This is post-Christian politics to its core. This is the politics one gets when this world is our only home, and no one is in charge but us. There is no sense of proportion.
The funny thing about analogies is that they are supposed to not be identities. But French just went from saying that liberalism is like a false religion that’s fallen to just saying it is a false religion that’s fallen. Doesn’t that change the point? And, hey, don’t conservative Christians get angry when their religion’s not the law of the land, too? Of course, one’s sense of proportion is indexed to the religion (or set of values) one thinks is true – of course you think that others have no sense of proportion when they mourn things you think are worthless or vicious.