Jonathan Martin, someday I have to meet you!
I wept as I read your essay, recognizing my own voice in your words, except in significantly more eloquent terms. I had goosebumps. I trembled at the recognition of myself in Donald Trump, even though I’m a black man. And then I was struck by an overwhelming sense of calmness and hope as I read these words:
“Through the wind, I hear the faint distant crackle and smell the charred air — the sound and smell of Rome, burning. Let it burn. Because when it does, the hearts of the faithful will burn with the flame of the Spirit, even and perhaps especially in the pain and disorientation. Then the saccharine sounds of the top 40 can be replaced with the primal, tribal rhythms of exile songs…and we can make soul music, like the Israelites did. The campaign to “make America great again” might mean that the Church can be made strange again. Thanks be to God.”
Without a doubt this is the best essay I’ve read on the current political and indeed spiritual climate we face in our great nation. Thank you for writing. Thank you for letting yourself become the “pen of the Ready Writer.” You certainly speak for me!