The President’s two corporate advisory councils made headlines earlier this week when multiple CEOs resigned in protest of the President’s mishandling of his response to the white supremacist inspired violence in Charlottesville, Virginia last weekend. So many of them resigned, in fact, that President Trump had to disband both the Strategy & Policy Forum and the Manufacturing Council just to stop the embarrassing, headline grabbing exodus.
Earlier today, the arts community joined the protest when the entire membership of the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities resigned with one collective open letter. Collectively, these mass protests disguised as departures constitute a strong moral rebuke to the President’s comments equating white supremacists to anti-fascist protesters.
Curiously, however, the one council tasked with providing moral and ethical guidance to the president, at least ostensibly, has been silent. The President’s Evangelical Advisory Board is composed of pastors and other religious leaders from across the country, and there’s been nothing resembling condemnation or criticism coming from them. Until now.
Rev. A.R. Bernard of the Christian Cultural Center in Brooklyn, handed in his resignation formally Tuesday after “quietly stepping away” months ago. He addressed his departure on “Twitter” early this evening.
My statement regarding my resignation from the President's Evangelical Advisory Board. pic.twitter.com/Ocae6SQxjZ
— A. R. Bernard (@ARBernard) August 18, 2017
Evangelical Christian leaders have had remarkable access and influence under this President. They enjoy “open door” privileges at the West Wing, and they participate in regular bible studies with cabinet and administration officials. They’ve even been known to pray with the President in the Oval Office, something neither they nor the White House are shy about advertising.
Perhaps they believe this access would be threatened were they to publicly criticize the President. Better to remain silent in public and quietly advise President Trump behind the scenes, perhaps.
But in times like this, their silence is deafening.