In the midst of the recent debate regarding Confederate statues in America, former first daughter Chelsea Clinton took to Twitter to share her thoughts on the subject. In a tweet that has now been shared over 89,000 times and liked roughly 27,000 times, Hillary Clinton’s daughter likened Confederate statues in America to hypothetical statues of Lucifer in Christian churches.
Appearing to address the failed rebellion of the Confederacy, 37-year-old Chelsea Clinton noted that, in her experience at least, Christians aren’t about honoring rebels. She went on to cite the story of Lucifer, a rebellious angel (also commonly known as Satan), and the fact that she’s never been to a Christian church featuring a statue of Lucifer.
“The story of Lucifer-who rebelled against God-is part of many Christians’ traditions. I’ve never been in a church with a Lucifer statue.”
Clinton’s tweet clearly likened the current Confederate statue drama (should they stay or should they go?) with the Bible story of Lucifer, the failed rebel. Many Americans have argued that Confederate statues should stay because they represent a significant part of the history of the U.S. On the opposing sides, opponents of keeping Confederate statues erected in public spaces claim that neither America nor Americans have any obligation to honor or memorialize the losers of a failed rebellion.
Chelsea Clinton likens Confederate statues to a celebration of Lucifer — and gets brutal blowback https://t.co/rm8Ivug9r9— TheBlaze (@theblaze) August 18, 2017
Not surprisingly, many Christians (and supporters of keeping American Confederate statues right where they are) were outraged by Chelsea Clinton’s social media comparison between Robert E. Lee memorials and homages to Lucifer.
The story of Lucifer-who rebelled against God-is part of many Christians' traditions. I've never been in a church with a Lucifer statue.— Chelsea Clinton (@ChelseaClinton) August 18, 2017
Many immediately took their beef with Clinton straight to her Twitter feed, attacking the apparent affront to their belief system right at its source. Some claim that God himself is guiding Donald Trump (who expressed outrage at the removal of Confederate statues from his personal Twitter account earlier this week), literally leading his hands and thoughts to “save America.”
At least one Chelsea Clinton social media adversary commented that it seemed unlikely that Chelsea had even seen the inside of a church.
I doubt you've ever been in a church, period— Honky Tonk Jew (@HonkyTonkJew) August 18, 2017
Another Twitter warrior took offense to Chelsea Clinton’s lack of designation between “monuments” and “statues,” suggesting that because the Confederate statues in question are actually monuments, they deserve special consideration and protection.
Your case would be clarified by distinguishing MONUMENTS from other forms of statuary. The Civil War statues are MONUMENTS. That matters.— Steven D. Greydanus (@DecentFilms) August 18, 2017
Some of Chelsea Clinton’s Twitter followers came to her defense, reminding the rest that neither statues nor monuments are necessary to remember the people and events of the past. Case in point, Germany. That nation doesn’t allow displays of Hitler or memorializing the failed Nazi regime, yet nobody has forgotten what Hitler and his defeated cause stood for.
Not ONE STATUE yet Germans haven't forgotten Hitler. No Ground Zero statues of Bin Ladin either. See, there are these things called books...— Ryan Klaus (@RealWonderman) August 18, 2017
Still others, not surprisingly, pointed out to Chelsea that artistic depictions of Lucifer, in the form of stained glass, sculpture, and paintings, actually do exist in Christian churches the world over, such as this stained glass rendering of the temptation of Christ by Lucifer (the Devil) at the Strasbourg cathedral in France.
These devils carved onto a pillar of the church of Chatellerault in France are another example.
While they are not worshiped, honored, or revered, they do provide history and context of a key biblical concept.
As Chelsea Clinton endured something of a social media beating for her likening of Confederate statues in America to statues of Lucifer in Christian churches, she was quick to concede that perhaps she had gotten her comparison — or perhaps her recollection of Christian art — wrong. Clinton admitted during the heated Twitter exchange that she should have said “I don’t remember [statues of Lucifer in Christian churches].”
Yes thank you Kisroka. I clearly should have said I don't remember-as I don't. Will look again when next in St. John the Divine & elsewhere— Chelsea Clinton (@ChelseaClinton) August 18, 2017
The Church of Satan even weighed in on the Confederate statue vs. Lucifer debate, albeit without much influence.
As the Twitter debate rages on, it seems probable that Chelsea Clinton did a little more harm to her cause than good when she compared Confederate statues to statues of Lucifer in Christian churches. Even so, more and more cities are coming forward to publicly announce plans to remove the Confederate statues and monuments within their borders.
[Featured Image by RW/MediaPunch/IPX/AP Images]