It’s heartbreaking knowing that no one will ever truly understand the pain, frustration, anger, disappointment, and yes, fear, that comes with being black. It’s also predictable that right about now is where many of you will stop reading because “Oh, here goes another black person whining. Get over it.” If that is how you feel, respectfully, move on to something else. Because I’m going to express my frustration anyway. I came across this article a few moments ago and it is titled, “After Charlottesville, will white pastors finally take racism seriously?” That’s not a rhetorical question. It’s also not a question that I know will be answered with a “yes” any time soon, if at all. But before I go any further, to those of you who do actively put yourself out there to stand in solidarity with us, your minority brothers and sisters in Christ, you are greatly appreciated! But to everyone else….How much of yourself do you see reflected in the following statements pulled from this article?
Statement: “Yet at the polls, white evangelicals voted overwhelmingly for Trump. Despite all of their verbal commitments to equality and racial reconciliation, 80 percent of white evangelicals went against the voices of their brothers and sisters of color.” 80%. Let that sink in…
Non-minority argument: “I didn’t vote for him because I like him as a person, I voted because I agree with his policies.” (Really? Policies that are rooted in hate, bigotry, sexism, greed, and incompetence, that’s what you voted for? That’s who you are at your core? Well, thank you for letting your ignorance and hate reflect in your approval of having this man in office. I applaud you for managing to do an impeccable job of doing your country AND THE GOSPEL a huge disservice. Pat yourself on the back.)
Statement from Dr. ML King “…all too many others have been more cautious than courageous and have remained silent behind the anesthetizing security of stained-glass windows.”
Non-minority argument: “Well, they shouldn’t make everything about race. They always want to play victim. Maybe they should try to better themselves, work hard, help each other. PULL THEMSELVES OUT OF THIS MESS THEY’RE IN.” (I’ve heard this in churches. I’ve heard this on my CHRISTIAN college campus. I hear it everywhere. Non-minorities telling minorities how we should feel, what we should be grateful for, what we do and don’t deserve, how we’re ungrateful, how we’re too sensitive, how we bring it on ourselves, how we need to stand up for ourselves more, etc. Because struggling to JUST SURVIVE in a racist system that people who uphold white supremacy created is easy enough?)
Statement: “White Christians will inevitably ask, “But what do we do?” This question perpetuates the problem. People of color did not create white supremacy; white people did. To ask a racial minority how to solve a problem they didn’t create and one under which they suffer only adds to their burdens.” (Because POC asked to be shamed for our problems as well as yours? No. Because we choose to be your scapegoat? I think not. Because we asked for our ancestors to be enslaved and broken just to be the foundation of wealth for a nation that to this day prides itself on its inhumane efforts of devaluing and belittling POC just to make itself feel superior? Because we willingly chose to suffer through segregation? Because we take pleasure in feeling like we have to defend our anger of having our basic civil rights ignored?)
Statement: “Evangelicals who prostitute the faith for political power remain in the pulpit and are given wide latitude to stir up racial resentment in the guise of “race neutral” language.”
Non-minority argument: “I’m not a racist. I don’t see color. I believe in equality for everyone.” (STOP perpetuating the illusion of “color-blind racism”. It does not exist and it never will.)
Take a moment and ask yourself, what have you actually done to help alleviate/combat/discourage/etc. the oppression of POC? You can talk about it. Hate it. Denounce it -verbally or silently. But it doesn’t mean anything if you continue to be a perpetrator in the silencing of the voices of POC. It doesn’t mean anything if you are too afraid or concerned of what your non-minority friends will think of you for standing in solidarity with your minority brothers and sisters. It means absolutely nothing if you are too afraid to challenge your white fragility and your white privilege. Evangelical Christians, check yourself. Because we are tired of doing it for you.
Reference: Tisby, J. (2017). After Charlottesville, will white pastors finally take racism seriously?. Retrieved from https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2017/08/12/after-charlottesville-will-white-pastors-finally-take-racism-seriously/?utm_campaign=buffer&utm_content=buffera747b&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_term=.e303fdd3437a