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Michael Brown Religiously Indulges In Politics

The WorldNetDaily columnist has continued to waver on Donald Trump, but he's more than happy to weigh in on right-wing culture war agenda items beyond his usual hatred of LGBTQ people.

By Terry Krepel
Posted 2/19/2024

Michael Brown

Michael Brown may be best known for hating LGBTQ people while also trying to claim he doesn't really hate them, but he has also weighed in on other political subjects as well, to varying degrees of success. For instance, Brown worked for years to sell Donald Trump to evangelicals, imploring them to ignore his amorality because he delivered on right-wing agenda items, though the Capitol riot finally caused him to waver.

Brown is not afraid to touch on other right-wing hot-button issues as well. He spent a July 2021 column complaining that Twitter flagged one of his tweets:

Back over at Twitter, a pastor with the last name Mather, making him a distant descendant of the early American Christian leader Cotton Mather (1663-1728), responded to my tweet. He pointed out that Cotton Mather believed in the integration of science and faith, getting vaccinated himself. (I would supply the direct quote with a link to the tweet except that, well, I can't, since I can't access my account.)

In response I tweeted, "@jjmather Interestingly, Jonathan Edwards died in 1758 as a result of the smallpox vaccine he received."

That was it. Nothing about COVID (obviously). Nothing about vaccines today. No misinformation. No conspiracy theories. Nothing in violation of Twitter guidelines at all. Not a word.

I simply related an interesting and relevant historical fact in response to the comment about Cotton Mather.


Can anyone tell me how posting a factual comment about the death of Jonathan Edwards in 1758 is in violation of any of these terms? Would any rational human being assume that I was saying, "I'm warning you not to get the COVID vaccine in 2021 seeing that Edwards died 263 years ago from a failed vaccination attempt"? (Does anyone think that medicine and technology have not advanced dramatically since 1758?)

The problem is that Edwards did not die from a "smallpox vaccine," and it is factually inaccurate to claim that he did. Brown seems to recognize this, as he admitted in a parenthetical aside:

(To be specific, Edwards died of a small pox inoculation rather than vaccine. As explained on the Historical Horizons website, "Edwards embraced the new science of his day, especially new techniques being used to combat diseases. When small pox swept into Princeton, New Jersey during the winter of 1757-58, Edwards, the local college's newly minted president, got a shot from a reputable doctor. Thirty-seven days later Jonathan Edwards was dead from the shot." And, "Actually it was not a shot. The accepted procedure involved rubbing matter removed from a pustule into a small incision made between the thumb and index finger.")

BioLogos further explained:

Inoculation with smallpox (variola) involved deliberately exposing oneself to smallpox pus or scabs, via a skin incision or nasal inhalation, with the hope that the resulting disease (expected to last days to weeks) would be milder than naturally-acquired smallpox, and confer protection from future illness from smallpox. Inoculation carried significant risks—death from smallpox and/or spreading smallpox to others—but it was known to be less risky than naturally-acquired smallpox, and had been practiced for centuries in Asia and Africa before it was introduced to Europeans in the early 1700s.


The safe and effective method of vaccination, for smallpox and a myriad of other diseases, was not broadly adopted until the 20th century, during a period in which public faith in institutions, including science and medicine, were at a high.

Inoculation -- effectively giving yourself a live dose of a disease in the hope you survive it and not catch other variants of it -- is not the same as today's vaccination procedures, but Brown's comment suggested it was. That's why he got flagged. But Brown is too much of a self-promoter not to exploit the situation to portray himself as a victim of "Big Tech":

But today, it appears that even posting historical facts that are deemed inconvenient is a challenge to Big Tech's iron grip.

Perhaps the cause of Edwards' death will now be scrubbed from our history books too. (The History Extra website ran an April 2020 article titled, "Rewriting the past: the history that inspired Orwell's '1984.'")

Because I only have 42,800 Twitter followers, it was not urgent that I was able to access my account again. And so, for sake of principle (and as a teachable moment), I chose to appeal the ruling. (As I write, about 12 hours later, there has been no response from Twitter, other than to acknowledge my appeal.)

That being said, because the tweet in itself was not vitally important to me, should Twitter drag its feet in responding, I'll likely remove the tweet and reactivate my account. For me, this tweet is not a hill worth dying on.

But unless Twitter fails to apologize to me in writing, saying that this was an error on their account, we now have yet another example of the degree to which dangerous lines are being crossed.

Not only are dissenting opinions not welcome. Inconvenient historical facts are banned as well.

To quote Orwell's "1984," "Who controls the past controls the future: who controls the present controls the past."

This is not a guy who cares about getting things right. He simply wants to hitch a ride on the victimization bandwagon because that's what all the cool right-wing kids are doing.

Defending an authoritarian

Michael Brown devoted an April 2022 column to gushing over the re-election of Hungary's authoritarian leader Viktor Orban:

Judging by reports from the left-leaning media, the people of Hungary showed their true colors by electing Prime Minister Viktor Orban to an unprecedented fourth consecutive term. If these reports are to be trusted, Orban is a dangerously nationalistic, far right-wing, anti-gay, anti-Muslim bigot, a friend of Russia's Putin and an adversary of Ukraine's Zelensky.

If this description is accurate, what does this say about the people of Hungary?

Orban was expected to have an especially tough challenge this time because all six opposition parties united against him. Instead, he won by his largest margin to date, with his party now looking to take 135 seats and the six-party opposition alliance taking only 56 seats.

As ConWebWatch pointed out when Newsmax's John Gizzi similarly gushed over Orban's win, Orban used his years in power to rig the country's election process to undercut any opposition -- voting districts have been gerrymandered to the point that while Orban won only 53 percent of the vote, he won 83 percent of the districts -- and pro-Orban allies control the media to the point that the opposition has trouble getting its message out. But Brown was so committed to this narrative that he actually quoted from Gizzi's whitewashing of Orban's win:

But Orban's relationship with Putin is not the primary reason for his great popularity. Instead, as explained by John Gizzi on Newsmax, "With the economic growth rate at 7.1% in 2021 and unemployment at roughly 3%, the economy was clearly on the side of Orban."

Gizzi also notes that "Orban also got high marks from voters for his policy of 'support for responsible child bearing' – notably that mothers who have four children are exempt from federal income taxes for life.

"The fruits of this pro-family policy (in which the government invests 5% of Hungary's Gross Domestic Product for family support) includes an increase in the fertility rate of 24% in the last decade – 'the largest in Europe,' Minister of Families Katalin Novak told Newsmax last October.

Brown then did some whitewashing of his own, trying to justify Orban's anti-Muslim and anti-LGBT agendas:

As for Orban being anti-Muslim, the truth is that Hungary largely closed its doors to Muslim refugees when the government found that, by and large, they were not trying to integrate into society but were instead living off government support, often while remaining hostile to Hungary itself. (Orban actually styled them "Muslim invaders.")

And the people of Hungary have not forgotten that they were under Ottoman (Muslim) rule for 145 years, from 1541-1699. This, too, affects their views on having open borders to large numbers of Muslim immigrants.

As for Orban being anti-LGBTQ, the reality is that Orban upholds Christian moral values when it comes to marriage, family and the sexualizing of children.

Accordingly, in 2020, the government altered "the constitutional definition of families to exclude transgender adults and same-sex couples, asserting that the 'foundation of the family is marriage and the parent-child relationship.'"

Then, in 2021, "Hungary's parliament … passed a law banning gay people from featuring in school educational materials or TV shows for under-18s."

And the majority of the Hungarian people supported these changes, which is another reason they voted again for Orban. Can you imagine?

After writing all that, Brown laughably denied he was defending Orban's hate:

Yet in saying all this, my intent is not to be an apologist for Orban, to minimize the suffering of the Ukrainians, or, in particular, to defend his relationship with Putin.

It is simply to say that, to the best of my knowledge, being informed by well-connected, mature Christian sources within Hungary, Prime Minister Orban is not the man the left-leaning West is making him out to be. He has done much good and stood for many noble causes, and in turn, his nation has shown its support.

If those "well-connected, mature Christian sources within Hungary" are willing to be apologists for Orban's hate and authoritarianism, how Christian are they really?

Endorsing a bogus graphic

Brown wrote in a May 2022 column:

What can we learn from Elon Musk's apparent shift to the right in his politics? From his perspective, as illustrated in his stick figure tweet, he has not shifted at all. Instead, the left has veered further left, because of which, by remaining stationary in his own views, it is perceived that he has moved to the right.

His graphic reminded me of an illustration I used for many years while preaching, holding the Bible high in in my right hand and using my left hand to represent the state of the society.

I would then say this: "Because we don't want to appear fanatical or radical as followers of Jesus, we tend to set our standards somewhere between the standards of God's Word and the standards of the world. But as the standards of each generation get lower and lower, our standards get lower as well.

"As a result, within a couple of generations, things are acceptable in our own homes as believers that would have been detestable in the homes of our non-believing grandparents."

Put another way, unless we actively swim against the tide of the worldly culture, we will find ourselves drifting in the wrong direction. We will simply be carried by the current.

Musk's point is similar yet different, especially since is not related at all to a faith standard or a biblical belief.

Instead, it illustrates just how far to the left the "progressive" mindset has shifted. As the saying goes, "Today's Democratic Party is not the Democratic Party of Bill Clinton." (Do you remember when the Democratic mantra concerning abortion was, "We want abortion to be safe, legal and rare"? How would that play today?)

Most of my Jewish relatives and friends from childhood are Democrats today, some of them quite staunchly.

Yet a few of these old friends are not, and when I interacted with them on social media, asking them what happened, their stories were the same.

They began to see what was really happening. They began to recognize how dramatically the "liberal" side was becoming extreme. They began to understand that the policies they once defended were actually indefensible and that the policies they once loathed actually had some merit.

Now, some of them are more conservative politically than I am.

But Musk -- and, thus, Brown -- have bought into a fallacious argument, that only the left is moving while the right has not. But Parker Molloy debunked that claim in a piece for MSNBC:

The argument being made here is a simple one: From 2008 to 2021, the political left moved even more to the left, while the right remained in the same exact spot. This I didn’t change! It was the left who left me! attitude is a pretty common trope among center-right types, but it’s simply not true. While perhaps comforting, there is plenty of empirical evidence to refute the core claim.


Look at how quickly the Republican Party turned against 2008 presidential nominee Sen. John McCain and 2012 presidential nominee (and now senator) Mitt Romney, who have both been slammed as RINOs (“Republicans in Name Only”). The face of the party is now represented by the likes of Rep. Lauren Boebert, Madison Cawthorn and Marjorie Taylor Greene. Arguably the highest-profile non-congressional Republican right now (besides Trump) is Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who has spent the last year passing a dizzying array of bills designed to cater specifically to the far-right.


And generally speaking, it makes sense that having curated a media diet heavy on the misinformation peddled by Fox News and co. or surrounding yourself with pundits screaming about how trans people are supposedly ruining everything good in the world could warp your perspective. If you spent the summer of 2020 being inundated by Fox News footage of Black Lives Matter protests, you might genuinely think that the left is out of control. This perception, however, simply doesn’t match reality.

It’s not uncommon for people to delude themselves into believing that their preferred political side is the reasonable one and that it’s the other side that’s out of control, as Musk has. That being said, if Musk actually believes the meme — which was created last year by Colin Wright, who writes a Substack mostly about gender and earlier this week attacked the Trevor Project, an LGBTQ youth suicide prevention organization, as part of the ongoing right-wing smear campaign targeting LGBTQ adults and children — that’s more worrying. After all, Musk is likely to soon control Twitter, a tool which, for all its faults, still wields power.

Molloy added that those "far left" views aren't as extreme as Brown wants you to think:

To take another example, while other countries have government-funded health care, the U.S. remains tied to its private-market insurance industry. As I’ve written in the past, the positions typically held by Democrats that get labeled by the press as “extreme” or “leftist” — such as bans on high-capacity firearm magazines, universal background checks on gun purchases, support for LGBTQ rights and taxing the ultra-rich — aren’t actually that extreme. These policies tend to be pretty popular with the general public, which is something you can’t exactly say about Republicans and their crusade to ban books, restrict abortion rights and attack LGBTQ people.

Brown, of course, is quite fond of the latter. He concluded:

It's the same with the continuing shift to the radical left. Over time, it will leave the vast majority of Americans behind, since the left's extreme woke agenda is unsustainable.

As a result, in the end, there will be a lot more people just like Elon Musk. The woke agenda will leave them behind.

It seems Brown is determined to remain oblivious to the fact that his increasingly reactionary and hateful agenda is leaving people behind too.

Cognitive dissonance on Harris

Brown complained in a July 2022 column:

Speaking to a group of disability advocates, and wanting to be thoughtful of those who were blind or vision impaired, Vice President Kamala Harris began her talk by saying, "I am Kamala Harris, my pronouns are she and her, I am a woman sitting at the table wearing a blue suit." But what, exactly, did she mean by those words? What, after all, is a woman? And what do we learn about Harris from her preferred gender pronouns?

In raising these questions, my purpose is not to mock the vice president. Rather, it is to mock the cultural madness that set the stage for her comments. We must not become accustomed to this social insanity!

To be sure, others found VP Harris' comments to be quite condescending, including Mary Chastain, who describes herself as nearly vision impaired.


Indeed, unless you were living under a rock, you would know that the vice president is a woman regardless of whether you were seeing or blind.

Ah, but mocking her is exactly Brown's point (the denials are a common tactic he uses). He seems determined to gloss over the fact that Harris was using those descriptors for the benefit of the "blind or vision impaired" -- which Brown himself noted at the beginning of his column -- and mindlessly join the homophobic right-wingers piling on Harris. Indeed, Brown went on a rant about Harris referencing her preferred pronouns:

As for Harris' preferred gender pronouns, the fact that she felt it proper to share that information reminds us yet again of how deeply we have fallen off the cliff of reality.

We should be alarmed. We should be shaking our heads. We should be asking how on earth we got to this point.

The vice president of the United States giving her preferred gender pronouns at the beginning of her talk? Really? (For another shocking illustration of just how far we have fallen, see my article, "Biden Administration is a Vivid Illustration of LGBTQ+ Activism on Steroids.")

Of course today, a woman could say, "My name is Rachel, and my pronouns are he-his," since Rachel might choose to live as a woman and yet identify as a man. Why not?

These pronouns simply explain how we want people to refer to us. They tell us nothing about their biological sex.

Then, after attacking transgender people like Lia Thomas, Brown again denied doing so:

I do not deprecate those who genuinely struggle with gender identity issues, as I have said time and time again. My heart goes out to them in their struggles.

And I do pray for God's best for the vice president. May the Lord guide her into all truth!

But I absolutely will continue to draw attention to the cultural madness into which we are descending. And I will continue to shout, "The emperor has no clothes!"

This is becoming more and more evident every day. Let's keep shouting!

By shouting his hatred of transgender people, Brown is very much deprecating and mocking. All his denials don't change that.

More wishy-washiness on Trump

As Trump's rhetoric grew more extreme, Brown remained wishy-washy. He wrote in his March 10 column:

Former President Trump's "I am your retribution" comments at CPAC have created the expected firestorm. For his loyal supporters, this was vintage Trump, as once again, he stood up boldly to fight for "us" against "them." To paraphrase, "They may have hurt you, but I will make them pay!" For Trump critics, this was Trump at his arrogant and dangerous worst, pledging a holy war against those who stood in his way.

To quote Trump in full, "In 2016, I declared I am your voice. Today, I add I am your warrior, I am your justice. And for those who have been wronged and betrayed, I am your retribution. I am your retribution. Not going to let this happen. Not going to let it happen. I will totally obliterate the deep state."

To repeat those central words: "I am your retribution."

What are we to make of this?

Weirdly, Brown didn't say Trump's name again after this, even though the column was a response to Trump. Instead, he ruminated on the biblical aspects of retribution, which concluded by arguing that retribution is for God alone but, again, not calling out Trump for trying to substitute his judgment for God's:

So, rather than try to destroy our enemies or bring retribution on them, our goal should be their conversion and transformation. That is the radical Jesus way.

Of course, some of us will immediately try to rationalize our way out of this command, saying that such efforts are a sign of compromise. Or we'll create ridiculous scenarios, asking, "So, if a killer breaks into my house, am I supposed to cook him a nice meal?"

That is obviously not what the Word is saying.

But God is calling us to crucify our flesh, to put down our carnal desires for retribution, and to make it our goal to overcome evil with good, thereby following in the footsteps of the Lord.

As for vengeance and retribution, we do best to leave that to God.

Which may be true. But if Brown won't specifically address Trump with that admonishment, his words are meaningless in this context. If Trump is claiming retribution where he shouldn't Brown needs to actually say so. Otherwise, he's just serving up more wishy-washiness over someone whose agenda he loves too much to be completely turned off by his severe character flaws.

Brown began his July 28 column this way:

Let me state clearly from the start that this is a spiritually focused article, not a politically focused article (and certainly not a partisan political article). Let me also state clearly that this article is not meant to attack any individuals, although I will be speaking quite directly about individuals. Instead, the purpose of this article is to make a spiritual point, specifically, to understand the spiritual implications of this unique moment in our country's history.
The problem with that statement is that it requires us to ignore that he spent years boosting Donald Trump and trying to get his fellow evangelicals to turn a blind eye to Trump's amoral narcissism because he was delivering the right-wing goods, and it wasn't until after the Trump-incited Capitol riot that Brown began to finally express serious doubts about whether the ends justify the means. In that spirit, when he went on to criticize Trump, he devoted at least as much space to attacking President Biden (or, more to the point, repeating right-wing anti-Biden talking points):
At present, the two leading presidential candidates for 2024 are current President Biden, now 80, and former President Trump, now 77.

As for Trump, he is the only president in our history to be impeached twice, although his defenders would surely argue that both impeachments were based on bogus charges. Plus, they would remind us, he survived those impeachment efforts. In any case, there was constant turmoil during his years in office.

As for Biden, there are growing calls for his impeachment, regardless of how plausible those calls might be.

When have we seen something like this in our history?

In addition to this, Trump has been indicted not once, but twice, with rumors swirling of a potential third indictment. Is it possible that a former president could actually do time in jail?

As for Biden, his son Hunter appears to be in ever increasing legal trouble, with the genuine possibility of jail time.

Unfortunately for President Biden, some of the allegations brought against his son potentially impugn him. Could the current president be indicted as well?

Again I ask, when have we seen something like this in our history?

Added to this are the growing concerns about President Biden's physical and mental fitness. (And who can forget the constant attacks on then-President Trump, calling his mental fitness into question?)

After admitting that age may not be the major issue here, Brown turned disingenuous again:

Also, since I am full of vigor and health and vitality and energy at 68, I recognize that 80 does not have to be that old. So, I'm not yelling for people to retire or get out of the way unless they are clearly unable to function on the job, thereby endangering others.

As for the charges and allegations concerning Trump and the Bidens, I have no ax to grind or agenda to push. I simply pray for equal standards of justice for all. And if there is guilt, my prayer is that there will be heartfelt acknowledgment of wrongs done along with genuine contrition and repentance.

In sum, I'm not rooting for anyone to fall, nor am I gloating when things look grim for someone whose political goals I reject.

Again, Brown was a big Trump booster and apologist, so he is very much rooting for one side over the other, even if he refuses to admit it. He went on to repeat more right-wing talking points:

In our case today, the trauma of COVID is not that far in the past, nor is the memory of the race riots or the election scandals or the storming of the Capitol. Then there are the growing fears of a potential World War III – a nuclear war at that – which could decimate the planet. And this, too, is only a partial list of the crises (or potential crises) of the hour.

There's also the question of trust. Can we trust the mainstream media? Cable media? Internet media? Left-wing sources? Right-wing sources? The government? The medical profession? The education system? Organized religion?

And how do we know if something is a ridiculous conspiracy theory that should be ignored as opposed to a genuinely important story that "the powers that be" are trying to suppress? How do we figure this out?

Brown seems to have forgotten that the outlet that publishes his column is a prolific promoter of fake news and conspiracy theories, and much of that untrustworthy news emanates from his side of the political aisle.

But rather than address these issues with any sort of seriousness or honesty, he turned it into a religious tract: "The good news is that times of instability, uncertainty, distrust and fear make for fertile ground for the Gospel. ... May we sow the seeds of Gospel love with tears of intercession so that, in the years ahead, many millions will come to faith with shouts of joy."

Yes, that's really how it ends.

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