The Atlantic

The Conversation

Readers respond to our April 2018 cover story and more.

The Last Temptation

In April, Michael Gerson described how evangelicals, once culturally confident, became an anxious minority seeking political protection from the least religious president in living memory.


I grew up in an evangelical-Christian household, and I am currently a student at Liberty University. As I am a recent ex-evangelical, Michael Gerson’s excellent article, “The Last Temptation,” struck a resonant chord with me.

Growing up, I was taught conservative beliefs and values by my parents, whom I deeply love and respect. I learned to value biblical morality, human life, marriage, and faith in God, and to believe in the transformative power of Christ. During the 2016 campaign, when the president of my university, Jerry Falwell Jr., endorsed a man who has lived in complete and unapologetic opposition to all the things I had been taught to value, I questioned my religion, I questioned my faith, and I questioned my God. Falwell’s actions shattered the legitimacy I found in the evangelical movement and, by association,

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from The Atlantic

The Atlantic3 min read
The Persistent Complexity of Tool
Back with new music after a 13-year hiatus, the legendary metal band is as precise and devastating as it has always been.
The Atlantic5 min read
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark Doesn’t Get What Makes Stories Scary
The film adaptation of the creepy children’s books is a serviceable homage, but it dilutes the power of the original tales.
The Atlantic8 min readPolitics
A Defining Moment for Trump’s Foreign Policy
A nation that itself broke free from colonial control has, under Trump, struggled to come up with a clear, consistent position on a massive demonstration from people in Hong Kong chafing at Chinese rule.