How Can I Vote for Peace in 2020?

How will God Vote: Part VII

Meister Käßner
8 min readOct 29, 2020


Poster Advertising Political Rally in Washington DC. Courtesy Washington Area Spark

“Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.” Matthew 5:9 KJV

Sometimes the shortest passages cause the most trouble. Do you want to be called a child of God? Practice peacemaking.

As Americans we are solely tempted to add qualifiers to the expression. Yes peace, but only on our terms.

“Peace through Victory.”

“Peace Through Strength”

“Peace with Honor”

The qualifiers demolish the simplicity of the message. Jesus did not say we will have peace after we have obliterated our enemies. His crucifixion turned victory upside down. Within the context of his time, Jesus’ death showed his weakness and failure as Messiah. Accounts of his resurrection would take nearly three centuries before they were officially accepted by the Roman Empire. Even today his peaceful message is drowned out by imperial ambitions cloaked in Christianity.

The poster advertising a March on Washington in 1970 provides a vivid example of enlisting God in America’s quest for imperial dominance. Fundamentalist leader Carl McIntyre sought to rally Americans to support American dominance. He believed God would provide victory over our enemies in Vietnam, the Soviet Union, and presumably in the Supreme Court as well. For McIntyre, conservative presence on the streets was necessary to counter anti-war activists and stiffen Nixon’s spine.

McIntyre shared his world view with many Americans of the time. The shared hardships of World War 2 and the early Cold War pushed many to back hard-line policies.

Politicians from Truman to Eisenhower, and Kennedy all sought to position themselves as the staunchest anticommunist. Joseph McCarthy and J. Edgar Hoover worked tirelessly to discredit liberal and pacifist positions. Nixon got his start in politics by accusing opponents of being soft on communism and working to expose suspected Communist sympathizers in the US government.

The rhetoric in the streets reached a breaking point in the Spring of 1970. Nixon’s public attacks on student protesters calling them ungrateful “bums” enraged students. Within weeks student protesters set fire to the…



Meister Käßner

I have been reflecting and writing about the stories, people, and places Northwest of Boston for thirty-five years. I also teach history and manage forest land.