Writing for the Baltimore Evening Sun on 26 July 1920, in an article entitled “Bayard vs. Lionheart,” Mencken cynically opined on the difficulties of good men reaching national office when the scale of their campaigns precluded them from directly reaching out to large segments of the voting public:
The larger the mob, the harder the test. In small areas, before small electorates, a first-rate man occasionally fights his way through, carrying even the mob with him by force of his personality.
But when the field is nationwide, and the fight must be waged chiefly at second and third hand, and the force of personality cannot so readily make itself felt, then all the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre — the man who can most easily adeptly disperse the notion that his mind is a virtual vacuum.
The Presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men.
As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people.
We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.
And now, a reminder for those of you among the religious right, who have wished to close the gates to immigrants:
Matthew 25:35 I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me,
Leviticus 19:33-34 “When a stranger sojourns with you in your land, you shall not do him wrong. You shall treat the stranger who sojourns with you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.
Romans 15:7 Therefore welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God.
Exodus 23:9 “You shall not oppress a sojourner. You know the heart of a sojourner, for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt.
Galatians 3:28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
Psalm 146:9 The Lord watches over the sojourners
Leviticus 19:33 “When a stranger sojourns with you in your land, you shall not do him wrong.
Hebrews 13:1-25 Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.
Deuteronomy 27:19 “Cursed be anyone who perverts the justice due to the sojourner, the fatherless, and the widow.”
Matthew 22:39 You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
Colossians 3:11 Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all.
Zechariah 7:10 Do not oppress the widow, the fatherless, the sojourner, or the poor, and let none of you devise evil against another in your heart.”
If you have been led astray by the words of a corrupt and godless man, this would be a good time to return to Jesus. The gates of heaven will open to you.
Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
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