Here I do not intend to explain why one should vote for Donald Trump, but, rather why an Orthodox Christian cannot vote for Joe Biden. To disclose my situation, I will not be voting in the Presidential Election; I live in New Jersey, which is so solidly a Democratic State in Presidential Elections, that, even if I voted for Donald Trump, it would not matter in changing anything ( in the 2016 election, Hilary Clinton won 55.5% of the vote in New Jersey, and Trump only won 41.35% of the vote; and it will hardly be that different this time); theoretically, I could vote for some third-party registered here that is pro-life.
Simply to disabuse anyone out there of any misconceptions , I do not like the Neo-Liberalism espoused by the Republican and Democratic Parties [i.e. large scale economic deregulation, ‘free trade’, large scale corporate power, emphasis upon profit, etc]; the so-called “Capitalist” system is not friendly at all, no more than its historic Marxist opposition, to traditional values espoused by the Scriptures, Holy Fathers, Saints, and even many others who, in some derivative sense, find themselves in partial agreement. Such traditional values would be the protection of the pre-born [pro-life position], support for the nuclear and extended family, traditional marriage [the only true marriage, that is, between man and woman], along with the concordant and necessary opposition to euthanasia, and opposition to those other aberrant behaviours that are now being legitimized [such as homosexuality and transgenderism]. I believe the proper function of the legitimate state authority is to promote and support the good, and to prohibit and restrain evils; the legitimate state authority should promote marriages, families, children, the elderly, disabled, the poor and working, by structuring the laws to favour them, as well as social service programs, trade restrictions, state-owned entities, government sponsored health-care, etc; the legitimate state authority, however, should legally prohibit evils like abortion, feminism, ‘gay rights’, ‘transgenderism’, pornography, accumulated financial powers of oligarchical institutions, etc.
However, the one overriding issue that still presents itself in this country that can still be changed is the issue of abortion. It is said to be a wedge issue; and it probably has been; undoubtedly a great deal of manipulation has occurred on this matter. Yet, that does not change the fact that it is the greatest legalized and protected moral evil in the United States today, and reflects the utter corruption in the wider society.
It is for this reason, and because of Joe Biden’s commitment to keeping murder of the pre-born legal [i.e. abortion], that no Orthodox Christian can vote for Joe Biden. If an Orthodox Christian does vote for him, knowing full well his position, then it is a great and deadly sin; you have taken part in supporting abortion. There is simply no way around it. It may be argued that this does not imply you have to vote for Donald Trump, and you can be right; but, in that case, it is better to simply not vote at all, or vote for some third-party that is pro-life. I could see an argument being made by hierarchical authorities in the Church that in certain swing states, where the vote could go either way, the Church should publicly endorse Donald Trump, and even possibly require members to vote for him, especially if it is proven that overriding proof has been given that Trump will appoint more Pro-Life judges to the Federal Supreme Court, and will fight tooth and nail on the pro-life cause, above all others. However, that is not entirely certain; I certainly hope to find out that this Judge Barrett will tip the scale on the Federal Supreme Court, and strike down Roe v. Wade [or, better yet, ban abortion across the board in all states].
Even if you agree with Joe Biden on all of his economic policy and thought [wherever they are going to be actually and appreciably different from Trump’s in actual practice], whatever that thought is, the fact that Joe Biden supports legal abortion, completely nullifies the possibility of an Orthodox Christian voting for him. It may, of course, be objected that Trump endorses the ‘gay rights’ movement, and that this is also morally objectionable; this, of course, is true. I suppose one would have to contend in their judgment about whether the possibility of striking down Roe v. Wade outweighs Trump’s endorsement of the ‘gay rights’ abominations; though, just the fight for laws protecting pre-born children and their right to simply be allowed to live is something very fundamental to legitimate law (if that is not respected, then all these other evils follow).
For some reason, in the minds of many individuals, they are not able to picture the horrors of abortion; this may be because they are not fully aware, outside of an intellectual understanding, of what happens. This, of course, is why those pro-life organizations that put up billboards of butchered children from abortions, in order to shock people, and confront them with the truth, are so necessary, and to be praised in these actions. For others, talking about hundreds of thousands or more abortions a year, whether surgical or via abortifacient pills [in which case it may be millions], is a statistic; it is like explaining that 5 million people died of hunger in Africa last year; it will be considered terrible, but, it can often have little impact on us.
If this is the case, consider the following scenario: there is Candidate A, with whom you agree with on everything, but one issue; the opposing candidate, Candidate B, you agree with on nothing, but one issue. The issue is whether nursing homes, hospitals, families, should be able to kill their elderly family members when they become too burdensome, too expensive, or too difficult to handle. Now, some may say, “But Candidate A supports social programs that may reduce the families taking the decision to kill their elderly family members; he won’t make it illegal, but, he may reduce it; however, Candidate B is just for the families not being able to kill the elderly, but he doesn’t support any appreciable increase in social services; he is just pro-letting them live, but nothing else.”
Assuming this is the case, it would still be morally required to simply prohibit killing elderly people, even if Candidate B wanted to cut ALL social services [which is often not the case in reality]. An elderly person has a better chance of surviving without social services, just on charity, in an homeless shelter, a facility, or on the streets, than they do being restrained, and then having their brain sucked out of the back of their skull; there is no surviving, whatsoever, such a gruesome procedure.
If you don’t support Candidate B because you believe he is not genuine, that the vote doesn’t matter because of the lopsided and overwhelming support for Candidate A in your state, and so on and so forth, then, at the very least, don’t vote for the one who wants to maintain the policy of legalized murder for the elderly.
Now, how is this scenario different from abortion and elections? There can be no legitimate scenario where it is permissible to collaborate with so terrible an evil as abortion; it is so fundamentally opposed to the whole premise of the legitimate and moral order of a society, as it legalizes murder of those who are completely innocent of any actual sins.
The teaching of the Church is not simply that we must be ‘personally against abortion’, it is that because abortion is murder, it must be legally prohibited, like other forms of murder. If you endorse or vote for such persons supporting legal abortion, then you are, in effect, excommunicating yourself from the Church, and creating a grave public scandal; any Bishop or Priest confronted with such a person is obliged to immediately remonstrate with them, and bring them to repentance; if they will not repent, then they are to be told they cannot receive any Sacraments in the Church until such time as they repent of their evil views. There is absolutely no controversy about this issue; Orthodox Christians cannot support legal abortion, nor vote for those supporting it; this is a fundamental moral precept of the Church.
For these reasons, all Orthodox Christians must know that voting for Joe Biden (or any pro-legal abortion candidate) brings you into moral culpability with the crime of abortion; if you do this, you must immediately repent of this horrific sin, and go to confession, for your very soul is in danger. You may be voting ‘in secret’, and not bother to tell your confessor about your support for this grave moral evil, but, God knows what you have done, and your only chance of salvation is repentance in Confession.
If you cannot bring yourself to vote for Donald Trump, then at least, don’t vote for Joe Biden, or any pro-abortion candidate; no vote would be preferable than a vote for them.