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Jerry Falwell Jr.
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Educator
    (June 17, 1962- )
    Born in Lynchburg, Virginia
    Birth name is Jerry Lamon Falwell Jr.
    Republican
    Son of televangelist icon, the Reverend Jerry Falwell (1933-2007)
    Obtained his Bachelors in Religious Studies from Liberty University, in 1984
    Obtained his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Virginia School of Law, in 1987
    Succeeded his late father as president of Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, previously having served as academic administrator and Vice Chancellor (Spring, 2007)
    Endorsed Republican front-runner in the 2016 Presidential race, Donald Trump, boosting his credibility among Evangelical voters in the run-up to the Iowa Caucuses (Jan. 26, 2016)
    He claimed that Donald Trump 'reminded him of his father' (except for the whole 'AIDS as a punishment for Gays' thing...)
    He frequently commandeers the Liberty University curriculum to promote his own Republican politics.
    This includes sanctioning the University's required weekly convocation for Senator Ted Cruz's Presidential campaign announcement, to ensure maximum turnout (unenthused students could be seen wearing 'Stand with Rand' shirts in the background).
    If he was ever actually on board with Team Cruz, he jumped ship, like so many before him, when it became clear that Donald Trump was going to remain the frontrunner in the 2016 Presidential race.
    Many Liberty University students openly questioned their president's decision to endorse a man who could barely identify 'Second Corinthians' correctly, knowing that his action would probably cede the Evangelical vote to his campaign.
    Before comparing Trump to Martin Luther King Jr., Jesus Christ, and his father, he introduced him as 'one of the greatest visionaries of our time.'
    Constitutional scholar, Michael Farris, criticized him for fawning endorsement of Trump, releasing a statement reading 'shame on you... for elevating success in business over the principles of right and wrong that flow from giving priority to the Word of God over the priority of a balance sheet. I am deeply saddened.'
    Those shocked about his Trump endorsement clearly don't realize that periodically utilizing a nonprofit tax-exempt school to intervene in a Presidential primary (possibly violating federal tax laws prohibiting campaign activities for political candidates) is just something 'he does.' He had previously shilled for Mike Huckabee in 2008, and then Newt Gingrich in 2012, likely as a means of promoting the University.
    He had his first brush with viral infamy when he was accused of anti-Muslim bigotry during one of his University Convocations, having addressed the San Bernadino Shootings by saying ‘If more good people had concealed-carry permits, then we could end those Muslims before they walked in and killed them’ (Dec. 06, 2015).
    He didn't use his financial resources to revive Heritage USA.
    He headed off Liberty University's outreach to a broader student base, reworking the school's image as a 'Christian fundamentalist academy.'
    His most effective approach may have been the expansion of the school curriculum to the growing pool of 'online students,' enabling them to attract an additional 50,000 to the University student roster.
    He helped Liberty University secure $120 million in tax-exempt facilities bonds after the school received a AA bond rating from Standard & Poor’s (Dec. 2010).
    Although his Convocation speakers tend to be Right-leaning, he invited liberal Democrat and Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders to speak (who later accepted; Sept. 2015).
    He granted an interview to Sean Hannity shortly after his endorsement speech, defending his decision by citing several of Trump's philanthropic efforts that received comparably little attention in the media.
    His 'those Muslims' line, while phrased poorly, was a clear reference to the actual perpetrators of the California terror attack, Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik (rather than some veiled dog whistle for ethnic cleansing of Muslims).
    Besides the 'concealed carry' gaffe, he's managed to distance himself from his father's penchant for making polarizing, sometimes incendiary fringe statements (avoiding witticisms like, oh we don't know, blaming the feminist Left and the LGBT community for the 9/11 terrorist attacks...)

Credit: BoyWiththeGreenHair


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