Yes, you read that title right. In light of the recent Charlottesville rallies, I have moved the writing of this article up to the current date. (Note: this article is specifically written to white conservative Christians, however it could be applied to anyone being passive about this issue).
The white supremacist and neo-Nazi rally was a heinous, detestable, and abhorrent example of humanity at its worst. But these are just words.
And that’s the problem.
As Christians, our greatest commandment is to love God and love our neighbor. How can we be fulfilling these commandments by standing idly by with the occasional Facebook status promoting peace? That isn’t action and it will not work. To have peace, we must first have justice. This isn’t politics; this is basic human rights and decency.
Since white people love to quote Martin Luther King Jr., there’s a fun quote for you to think about. “…but the white moderate who is more devoted to order than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice.” That is what we need. “…a positive peace which is the presence of justice.” Justice. Not some quote claiming we all need to work together, or trying to point out the other side’s flaws. Justice. It is of the utmost importance that we stop trying to find a compromise and instead acknowledge the real issue.
Ekemini Uwan (@sista_theology on twitter) tweeted, “The identity of racists, bigots, and white supremacists is based on a lie about their imagined superiority over the LIE of black inferiority.” Read it again. And again. And again. Racism and white supremacy is not ignorance, it is a belief system rooted in lies.
And it is the duty of church leaders to speak up against this wickedness. This is not to say that some church leaders have not already done this, but it is to say that we must take affirmative action against this evil hateful lie.
Proverbs 21:15 says “When justice is done it brings joy to the righteous but terror to the evildoers.” Sound reminiscent of anything? “We will not be replaced!” Or maybe “Jews will not replace us!” Justice brings terror to the evildoers.
Isaiah 1:17 says “Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow.” As Christians we are supposed to defend the oppressed. That means passiveness will not do. We have a duty to speak up for the voiceless. Or better yet, pass the microphone. We cannot keep acting as if we know the issue, if we do not listen to the people who have actually experienced it and have actual ideas and intuition into what the solution is.
As Christians it should not be easy and comfortable to sit idly by as violence and terrorism dominate our timelines and infiltrate our lives. In the coming days, weeks, and years, I pray to see a resurgence of uniting for justice.
I could write more, but I digress. I highly encourage everyone to go check out Ekemini Uwan and either read some of her articles or follow her on twitter, @sista_theology.