Trump, Civility, and the Debate Over ‘New Conservatism’

Ever since President Donald Trump broke old conservatism, conservatives are debating what the new conservatism should be, as they try to piece it back together.

The most recent spat revolves around a May 29 Sohrab Ahmari, New York Post op-ed editor, article in First Things, “Against David Frenchism.”

Here are some of the highlights of that debate. Follow the links if you want to dig deeper.

On March 31, First Things published a manifesto, “Against the Dead Consensus,” co-signed by a number of religious conservatives.

There is no returning to the pre-Trump conservative consensus that collapsed in 2016. Any attempt to revive the failed conservative consensus that preceded Trump would be misguided and harmful to the right,” the manifesto stated.

Signers included Ahmari, Patrick Deneen, Rod Dreher, Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry, Mark Regnerus, and Matthew Schmitz.

In “Against David French-ism,” Ahmari said that, speaking only for himself and not the other signers, the manifesto was against the sort of conservatism represented by David French, a conservative writer for National Review and former lawyer with Alliance Defending Freedom who is well known for his opposition to Trump.

“French-ism,” he wrote, “is more a persuasion or a sensibility than a movement with clear tenets.”

This sensibility includes an “earnest and insistently polite quality,” Ahmari said, that is unable to win political battles against the progressive forces seeking to exclude religious conservatives from the public square. Religious conservatives have “won discrete victories,” he argued, but overall, they are losing the culture war.

French-ism is partly to blame, Ahmari wrote, because French will fight for the individual liberty of those who seek to make America a place where religious conservatives like him are forced underground.

Click here to read more.

SOURCE: Christian Post, Napp Nazworth