Posts Tagged ‘Mike Brown’

Congrats to the new Mrs. Darren Wilson! Uh…May I have a word, please?

November 28, 2014

Dear Mrs. Darren Wilson,

Congrats on your recent nuptials and the new baby you are expecting!

Before you get too comfortable though, I wanted to share some thoughts I’ve had about protecting your future. I realize things are great now: You have the glow of love and marriage, a baby on the way, money in the bank, and Darren at home full time. You’ve had the exhilarating experience of standing by your man, as you fight together against all that would come against him, and for now at least, you’ve won. However there is some truth to the old adage that is is wise to “prepare for war in times of peace.”

Babies are wonderful. I truly believe they are a blessing from God. You see your seed, and a fierce joy wells up in your heart, and you know there is nothing you would not do to protect them and make the world better for them. They demand your love, time, and focus, and you give it to them gladly.  Now, while they can push back relationship and family problems for a while, they can’t make them totally go away, as I’m sure you already know. Eventually life comes back: Financial issues arise. Darren goes back to work with all it’s pressures and can’t help full time. You’re alone most of the day with the kids, while he gets to get out and live a little, or you’re struggling to balance your own career with home and family life. People will eventually forget about recent events enough to where you can live a semi-normal life, and instead of facing the world together, you’re back to facing each other. If what I’ve read is accurate, you were both a little sloppy in your former relationships (I’m not judging though, you’re both adults), and so there is another well known adage for you to consider as well: “If he will cheat WITH you, he will cheat ON you.”  Though I hate to say it, as a woman a little older than you, you aren’t a spring chicken anymore, and Darren is quite a few years younger than you. Divorce rates in general are high, and even if Darren doesn’t stray, recognizing this can eat away at you and cause you to be insecure anyway.

I’ve noticed that when things go sour in relationships, what you once loved, you come to hate. It’s the flip-side of the same coin.  Protectiveness becomes smothering. Being carefree turns into being immature, unreliable. Cute snores becoming irritating.  Being decisive and having structure comes being rigid and over-bearing. Giving guidance and advice comes across as being critical. Likewise, if he has not been truthful, Darren’s actions which now may be seen as clever, cunning, inventive, and victorious may strike you later as cowardly and lacking honor. You may not be able to look at and lay beside someone who you feel is less than a man.

I’d also caution you to look at George Zimmerman and learn from his example. I know that Darren said he had no remorse and would shoot Michael Brown again, but that could change in the future.  He might one day look at his own child, realize what he caused the Brown family to lose, and actually grow a heart, so to speak.  He (or you) could become terminally ill and want to die with a clean conscious, again assuming that it isn’t already.  Zimmerman for all his bravado and tough talk, had some sort of decency, otherwise he wouldn’t be in the self destruct mode that he is now. He may have been acquitted by a jury, but he knows the truth about his actions and there is no way he can get away from self judgement. He wasn’t exactly stable before he killed Trayvon, but afterward the violence against his girlfriend, her and his wife’s subsequent turning on him, going through all the money he had received, trouble with the law – it’s all self sabotage. He may not be in jail, but he will never be free.

With all this in mind, I urge you to consider your future and prepare for yourself a little “insurance policy”, should your current bliss come to an end on less than conciliatory terms.

Now, let me preface this with the fact that all this may be unnecessary. Though I’m biased, Darren could have been upfront and honest with us all this time. If that is the case, you have nothing to worry about. Mostly nothing, anyway. However, if it’s not the case, get your ducks in row now, because it’s just a matter of time before it all comes crashing down.

I assume you know him pretty well and that you trust each other as you are now married. I’m sure over the past few months he has been 100% truthful with you about his actions, the reason behind them, and any feelings he had on the matter.  I’m not asking you to share them, and thankfully as his wife, even the courts cannot compel you to testify against him, but I want you to document it. All of it. Write it down. Take pictures. Record conversations. Do it now while events are fresh in your mind. Make copies for a couple of SD cards, hide them well, then go on to enjoy your life and forget about it.  When Zimmerman’s wife and girlfriend finally wanted to speak up, it came across as being bitter and wanting revenge. Gathering all this now will allow you to keep your composure in the future, should you need to.

Next, get a financial planner. Put some  money away for the kids in the future that you can’t touch, so that if needy relatives or self sabotage does kick in, you have something to fall back on.

Finally, keep a close eye on Darren.  As I’ve said, I’m sure he’s been 100% open with you, but please consider the possibility that he may have told you one thing, and kept the truth to himself. If he starts drinking heavily, becoming violent, binge spending, acting reckless, he may be experiencing guilt, whether or not he is actually guilty. Tell a friend you can trust so that if something happens to you or the children, you have an advocate.

Now, should the relationship not last, whether it is fallout from recent events or just a natural progression in life,  you have some leverage for the divorce, a little money to keep you going, and some peace of mind. Hopefully all this advice is just me wasting text, but I figure, better safe than sorry, and I like being potentially helpful.  : )

Wishing you both all the best you deserve in love and life.

~Chant~

Advertisements

Anonymous: Cyber Criminals or Robin Hood for the Digital Age?

October 27, 2014

I’ve always been a traditionalist when it comes to information leaks: There are some things I just don’t think we need to know.  I figured government secrets were secret for a reason. I was never heavily into politics. I did some research, elected people, and just trusted them to run the city/state/country. From the two terms of President Bush and leading up to and following the election of President Obama, I was much more aware. And disturbed.  The lies of Fox news and hateful rhetoric used to influence their viewers, the viewers who believed them even though there were facts that said otherwise, amazed me.  Almost daily, congress became a major source of entertainment and fright. It was a cross between a soap opera, SNL sketch, Onion article, TV thriller and con-artist show.  Seeing what were supposed to be respectable elected officials act like children, blatantly lie, throw tantrums and just unashamedly show their ass in public was the scary part.  You don’t know if they are really as obtuse as they appear to be, or if they appear to be so for political/monetary gain, or what is worse: an idiot or someone who appears to be one while knowingly ruining the country, blocking good policies and enacting nonsense at the expense of our citizens. Anyway, prior to the last 10-12 years, I was basically tuned out. I only paid attention near election season.  In regards to leaks: If someone leaked information in a “whistle blower” fashion, exposing wrong doing, I was OK with that, but leaking information for the sake of leaking information, well, I really couldn’t stand behind that.  I had seen some write ups and news releases about wiki-leaks and  the cyber group “Anonymous”, and I just figured they were cyber criminals and sooner or later someone would catch up with them.

Then came Ferguson, Missouri.

Before Ferguson, I never really paid much attention to the hacker group Anonymous. Not wanting to be seen as behind something illegal,  I reluctantly followed some of them on twitter, because they were one of the few places I could see consolidated information regarding the events taking place in Ferguson after the killing of Mike Brown.  I was still on the edge about hacking and bringing down police and other public sites, but their passion and compassion for the people of Ferguson could not be denied, which I had to respect. Then the respect grew. Ferguson is not the only cause they are involved in.  They are speaking truth to power, being a voice for people struggling without one and amplifying the voices of people who have little to no power in areas all over the globe. A group I would have once dismissed, I’ve come to root for and admire.  Now, I don’t want anyone to catch up with them. On one hand, I cringe at the thought of someone’s privacy being invaded, but on the other hand, they seem to get results, or at least a response. When people are stone walled and locked out by the powers that be, they go in a window and let everything air out.  Their actions, in turn, encourage others to investigate and uncover truths for themselves.  It’s a risk, because what is being used for good could very easily be used for evil, but it’s hard to be against something or someone who is in your corner, and helping the underdog. I’d like to thank all the different Anonymous groups for their support and help in bringing attention to the corruption and abuses in Ferguson. Things may change in the future, but for now, I wish Anonymous and their band of Merry Men (and women) all the best.

With all due respect: FUCK YOU Bill Maher

October 25, 2014

From the most recent Real Time episode:

BILL MAHER: You know what else I find disturbing is that everybody in America just sides with their own people and doesn’t look at the facts. The cops, I saw on the news a couple of weeks ago, were wearing bracelets or something that said, “I am Darren Wilson.” Why do you want to throw your lot in with this plain murderer?

And Michael Brown’s people. I’m sorry, but Michael Brown’s people say he is a gentle giant. Well, we saw of when he was in that 7-11. No, he wasn’t a gentle giant. He was committing a robbery and he pushed that guy. He was acting like a thug, not a gentle giant. He certainly didn’t deserve to be shot for it. (HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher, October 24, 2014)

Fuck you, Bill.

Now Bill isn’t the first person to say this about Mike Brown, and he does agree he was wrongly killed. My sister is of the same mindset: Mike Brown was a “thug” and Officer Wilson is a “dirty, murdering cop”.  I’ve also had conversations with others who thought along the same lines:

“I was very sad and disappointed when I heard the news that this young brother had robbed a store. His mother had us believe he was a big teddy bear who wouldn’t harm a fly. That he was just a young cool kid who was on his way to his grand-mothers house when he was accosted by the police for walking in the street. In just a few days he was on his way to college. With a story like that we all need to get behind a brother like that.

Man, the way he threw that clerk around this guy has “thug” written all over him. These type of people are in the the ATL everyday doing home invasions, killing innocent families on the regular. Someone robbing a store is not normal behavior. My friends and I were never robbing people when we were kids,  that never entered our mind.

I know what I’m saying is not popular, but we can’t use up our resources and good will on this dude, no way in  hell I would be out on the street championing a dude that in any day might be robbing or killing me.” (Edited for language, ironic considering my title huh?)

I’ll say now what I said then:

“How much dirt do teens do that their parents know nothing about? How many kids are shoplifting on dares or for the thrill of it and taking and sending naked selfies? There was a bunch of white kids running a prostitute ring, I’m sure their parents didn’t know until the cops came knocking. He didn’t have a criminal record so if he was acting a fool outside the house and not bringing the drama home, I wouldn’t expect his mother to know. When I was growing up, it was called respecting your mother’s house. Plus, they had inquired at the QT store (not the liquor store where it took place) so she didn’t have any reason to believe differently.”

Black kids often look older and more mature than kids of the same age of other races. People tend to perceive them as needing to be controlled, instead of guiding them and allowing self expression. I’ve seen young black boys scolded for doing things that are appropriate for their age while other kids around them exhibit the same behavior and go unaddressed or are encouraged in their behavior. When you are a black kid and bigger than the others, like Mike Brown, it’s even worse.  Bigger kids are always constantly reminded not to hurt others and to mind their strength. They often have their childhoods inhibited to a degree and are not free to express themselves, because in being open and active, they intimidate others. They are told they are too old to do things that is perfectly fine for other physically smaller kids of the same age. They never really get to “wild out” like other kids do. Older kids may not want to play with them because of their age, and if they do then sometimes they get exposed to things at an inappropriate level or that they aren’t ready to handle.  So, if Mike’s upbringing was typical of that which most kids in similar situations receive, I expect everyone around him thought of him as a “gentle giant” because in actuality he was. He had probably had it instilled in him since he could walk to be mindful and considerate of his physical interactions in relation to others.

From an early age, black children in general  are taught to view their behavior though the eyes of others and adjust it accordingly.  Ask any black man about not making sudden movements to keep others (read: white folks) at ease. Ask them about speaking slowly, in calming tones in order to try to maintain the peace of mind and security of someone else.  Ask any black person about going shopping well dressed, because if you are casual in jeans and a t-shirt, store clerks wont take you seriously, especially when it comes to buying big ticket items such as a car. When shopping, I was always taught to keep my hands visible, not to dig through my purse or open it except when I was at the register, not to wear big coats or carry big purses or place my hands in and out my pockets where someone might think I was shoplifting. I was well into adulthood when I was able to get to the point where I was able to go into a store and walk out with out making some kind of  purchase, even when they didn’t have what I was looking for, so as not to be thought a thief.

The problem goes beyond this though. When black and white kids display poor behavior, they are judged differently. The black kid’s behavior is seen as being indicative of inherent character flaws and innate criminal tendencies,  but the white kid is just going through a phase. Mike used his size to intimidate a store clerk, and while no one is making excuses for that, nor is it related to the shooting incident, somehow that one incident is being used to say he was irredeemable.  He was just a kid. They make bad decisions. He would have gone on to college, matured, and become a responsible adult. The white kids at pumpkin fest, who were older than Mike and already in college,  breaking out windows, looting stores, starting fires, well they were just being a little rowdy. They will grow out of it. Mike? Well there was no hope for him, those six bullets just stopped him from robbing someone else later on.

The person in the discussion I quoted above went on to say because he was in the adult business, that if he had died similarly and info on his business ventures got out, it would “derail the movement”  because “you need someone clean to lead a movement, even in death.”

I say this is bullshit.

We are individuals. We need to get away from black people being collectively guilty or innocent based on the actions of one or a few. We need to get away from saying a black person doesn’t deserve justice because they are poor, have a past, are not well spoken, wear hoodies or sagging pants etc. No other race has to have their victims vetted to see if they are worthy to seek justice for wrongs visited upon them. This is victim blaming and shaming.

It’s asking us to play the game by a set of rules no one else is using by telling black people if you do a,b,c or d, and be the “good negro” then you would be treated well and not be on the receiving end of violence or of racist acts and hate crimes. It is a lie. For decades we have been doing all sorts of contortions to have someone else pass judgement as to whether or not we are worthy to exist and breath the same air and have the same protections that all American’s are supposed to have under the protection of the law by simply being citizens. That’s like telling an abused child that mommy wouldn’t beat them and burn them with the iron or lock them in the closet for days on end if they kept their room clean, or played quietly or got good grades. No, mommy is a deranged monster and no matter how well behaved the kid is, when mommy gets good and ready she is going to go off. None of the changes he makes to his behavior  to try to placate her will make one iota of difference. We set some white people off simply because we exist, and it isn’t because we don’t dress like them, or speak like them or carry ourselves a certain way. The only trigger they need is our non-white skin and it doesn’t matter whether it’s covered in a a hoodie or a suit. Oprah is one of the wealthiest and well respected black women in the world. President Obama is leader of the free world.  The Obama family is the epitome of respectability.  Yet there are people who would hunt them down like animals if they could and mount their heads as trophies. If they aren’t exempt from being called n*ggers and apes, and being the target of racists, why would anyone in the hood or on a lower social/economic level be any different? Hell, often being well to do and successful sets them off even more.

The bottom line is that the protests that are going on are not about Mike Brown’s character. Protester’s are not out for two months straight because they are defending “an angel” incapable of wrong doing.  People protesting are not blindly taking Mike’s side, or denying he was flawed. If this is what you, Bill or anyone else thinks, you haven’t been paying attention. It’s about the fact that according to multiple witnesses, recorded immediately in the aftermath, he had his hands up in surrender and was shot multiple times (excessive force),  and then left to lie like an animal in the street for 4+ hours. It’s about Ferguson police bypassing basic policing 101 and not filing a police report. (I actually believe they did file a report and made it disappear. The robbery report involving Brown referenced both a Ferguson and St Louis County police incident report number the day he was killed, yet it took them 20+ days to release a report amounting to a blank sheet of paper. At the very least they are incompetent and guilty of shoddy police work. I’ve heard of confrontations between officers and citizens resulting in the shooting of a dog where a more thorough incident report was filed. I’d like to think that people are worthy of more consideration than a German Shepard.) It’s about It’s about having no confidence in the local law enforcement, whose ranking officers have a history of lying and falsifying police reports, but are asking us to believe them now when they say Mike Brown went for the holstered weapon of a police officer in a SUV.  It’s about withholding the name of the police officer, giving them time to scrub social media before the general public and reporters could vet him. It’s about Ferguson and St. Louis County police officers trampling on the civil and constitutional rights of it’s citizens and news reporters, treating a grieving community as criminals in a war zone instead of concerned citizens seeking answers. Ferguson has transcended Mike Brown. He was the last straw in a long line of slights and abuses across the entire nation. It’s now also about justice for all the other Mike Brown’s who are shot or beaten by police, who face no repercussions even with video evidence of wrong doing, because they did it with a badge on. It’s about preventing our loved ones from being the next Mike Brown.

One last thought:  I’ve seen comments to the effect that because police shootings are such a small percentage of incidents,  that we shouldn’t pursue this issue:

This shows a total lack of compassion. This is viewing people as stats, as numbers on a page. By this logic, since the majority of people drive sober, we shouldn’t campaign against drunk driving. Since the majority of husbands don’t beat their wives, we can ignore domestic violence. Since the majority of children aren’t abused or molested, no awareness is needed.  Since the majority of children are born without birth defects, we don’t need to try to prevent them. This is telling people, who have been victims of police violence, that their pain is insignificant because the stats are insignificant. We are tired of having our pain and grievances dismissed. I don’t care if only one person in all the world is the victim of police brutality, they deserve justice. Also, please keep in mind, the drama going on in Ferguson is just to get Wilson indicted to be brought to trial, not an actual trial to determine his guilt or innocence. The family of Mike Brown and the people of Ferguson want and deserve to have Officer Wilson give an account of his actions and have them publicly weighed in a court of law.

Someone lost a loved one. Good or bad, Mike Brown was loved and mattered to someone. Several someones. If your loved one was killed, for whatever reason, would you want answers? If you lost your child, your spouse, your best friend, under normal circumstances, let alone a violent shooting, and could not get straight forward answers, how would you react? Yeah, I thought so.

Where is the Clergy on Ferguson and Race Relations?

September 1, 2014

istockphoto

I’m a huge sci-fi fan. I like it all from the cheesy to the spectacular. Some of the content that has come out over the years has been frowned upon by some Christians, but I don’t tend to freak out when I see a “Christian theme” expressed in secular entertainment. I see it more as making a Christian concept understandable in layman’s terms. One such concept was delivered in the 4th season of Angel, an episode titled Sacrifice.  Episode 86 on Netflix.  I wish I had the video clip to share. The demon Jasmine had come to have influence on the human population, with promises of peace and love. For lack of a better description she had basically possessed the people exposed to her. She could see what they see, feel what they feel and control them. She referred to them as the Body of Jasmine.  At the very end of the episode, her soldiers were descending upon the band of dissenters who had seen her true face and were no longer under her influence. As fighting commenced every slash, gunshot, or other wound visited upon those she dwelt in, manifested on her body.  As I watched her demonically laugh, seeming to enjoy all this, it occurred to me that this is what it must be like for the body of Christ when believers indwelt with the Holy Spirit, strike out at each other. The harm is visited upon the whole body, unbeknownst to us. It had such a profound effect on me, seeing the VISUAL, that I’ve never forgotten it, and it always comes to mind when I see Christians at odds with each other or divided somehow on one issue or another.

One such divide resolves around race.  We’ve all seen the historical photographs of black people being lynched or otherwise terrorized. Even now roughly 80% of Americans identify as Christian, so it’s not too far fetched to assume that these same people who could have a family outing for such morbid entertainment as a lynching on Saturday, were probably in church praising God on Sunday, and feeling guilt free.

So when I ask “Where is the clergy?”, I mean where are they when it comes to addressing racial injustice  by perpetrators who identify as Christian.  I know there have been clergy on the ground in Ferguson.  Some have been injured standing with protestors. I saw all the pastors who attended the gathering with Al Sharpton, (when you proudly stood as he asked the clergy present to show themselves, y’all weren’t expecting that $100.00 donation request were you? haha…)  and those who attended the Michael Brown funeral services. But where is the national church conversation, directed in-house, at Christians who hold racial biases and feel justified in doing so?  Also where is the conversation with the black youth who see Christianity as just another form of “white oppression”, designed to keep black people pacified, and less likely to revolt when they experience perceived (read: real, actual, concrete, and video taped) wrongs? Should they feel they can trust the church when they do not see their white brothers and sisters in Christ even addressed for their actions or skewed thinking?

See, when Christians are being persecuted in some manner, what generally tends to happen is that the victims hear something along the lines of “And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” or “But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.” Perhaps, “In all their suffering he also suffered, and he personally rescued them. ”  In other words, be patient they will get theirs. Just stand and watch the deliverance of the Lord.  We hear  promises such as  “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Not really convincing when you’ve seen the future of an 18 year old ended by 6 shots and no guaranteed justice in sight.  Not to mention remaining steadfast while seeking said justice when people vehemently oppose considering it for someone who had recently robbed a local store for cigars, as though that one act makes him ineligible for all time, or nullifies the wrong done to him by another. Weariness can definitely set in when you feel powerless and unheard. It wears one out to experience repeated insults and injuries while the world is either indifferent to or delighting in your misery. Death by 1000 paper cuts. You bleed out in the middle of the crowd, and remain invisible the entire time. This is not to discount the word. I believe the word of God has power. (I know there are those outside the faith that believe scriptures such as those above only encourage inaction and discourage working to change one’s situation, and while there are some who have used the word as such, the bible does not advocate this.)  In times of challenges, these and other scripture have indeed been a real and present help, making it possible for Christians to hold on and weather hard times and injustice. However, when they are uttered as simple platitudes to absolve oneself from taking action to help another, or to allow evil to go unchallenged, we rob them of their power, and bring no real comfort to those who need it.

Where are the teachings that state “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus” or “If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen.”  or “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” or “Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates a brother or sister is still in the darkness.” or “But anyone who hates a brother or sister is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness. They do not know where they are going, because the darkness has blinded them.” or even a simple “You reap what you sow”? I was always taught that “Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks.” When is the clergy going to call out their congregation for sowing and speaking hate and division? Or do they not recognize black people as their brothers and sisters in Christ?

“There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end leads to destruction.”  is sometimes used to justify/excuse the actions of people. They just don’t know better.  Victims are told to love everyone and not let evil overcome good. The perpetrators aren’t getting told anything.  I was always taught that the word of God convicts you in your heart of wrong doing. You are compelled to change or go crazy rebelling. Yet when it comes to racism, race relations and indifference toward people of color and their experiences,  white folks aren’t hearing the word that would convict their hearts, allow them to have compassion and  possibly lead to repentance around their actions.  People and organizations can shed light on racism, show it’s effects, and pass laws, but you can’t legislate someone’s heart and mind. People have to have their own epiphany, their own “Come to Jesus” moment.  In failing to address this, the church is failing us.

The Church is not supposed to look like “the world”. It is supposed to stand on biblical principles, regardless of what the mainstream way of thinking happens to be at the moment. Sadly, the world has a lot more influence in the church than it should have.  How else do you explain something like what happened in Mississippi?  Members of a majority white church opposed having a black couple wed there.  Not an interracial couple, which caused church controversy before, even though there is no biblical basis to oppose it – this was  a basic black couple.  So instead of the pastor telling them all to kiss his backside and the backsides of all the saints throughout all the ages, he gave in and officiated over the wedding elsewhere in order to save his job. Now maybe they don’t make pastors the way they used to, but as I was taught the word of God is the same yesterday, today and forever,  I thought that Galatians 1:10 still applied: For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ. Guess I was wrong.

Some may say there is no issue because they attend where there is a multicultural congregation, or because some whites/non-blacks may be willing to “sit under” a black pastor, such as TD Jakes,  Fred Price Sr.,  or whomever it is  that is well respected locally.  That is inconsequential.  Aside from the wedding example given above (of which the couple was probably unaware of the attitudes held in the hearts of their fellow church-goers until they were refused a place for their ceremony), for one, black people have always been willing to take religious instruction from a white pastor. Secondly, when you have someone with the reach of Jakes or Price, or one who has amassed a certain amount of respect, they are seen as the exception to the rule of whatever negative image is held for black people in general. Believing there is not an issue simply because there are black people in the congregation, or white people receiving instruction from a black pastor, is akin to situations where someone says something racially insensitive and seeks to rationalize it as not being an issue because they have “black friends” or friends of whatever race they just insulted.

When ever something blows up in “the world”, I go visit Christianforums.com to see what the Christian view point is regarding politics or current events.  I’m almost always saddened by what I read there.  I made a recent trip over there to see what the commentary was around Ferguson. There are always opposing voices on both sides of an issue, and they have trolls just like every other forum, but to see someone, seemingly intelligent, argue as to why we (black people) should be feared (we are huge, violent, and own the sucker punch apparently) is disturbing to say the least. I don’t think they are “bad” people, necessarily, but I wonder how much exposure to black people these posters have had in their day to day lives. Perhaps they are one of the many who can live their lives and barely come in contact with black people, aside from what they see on TV.  If so,  maybe they are not hearing sermons about brotherly love in a racial context, because no black peers = no problem. Out of sight, out of mind, so to speak.

Regardless, it’s unsettling to see some of the mindset that Mike Brown couldn’t have been redeemed.  Forgiveness and redemption are throughout the bible.  Forgiveness is not just a get out of jail hell free card when we have wronged someone. We are taught to forgive, as we have been forgiven by Christ.  So it strikes me as odd that while Paul persecuted and killed Christians, and was worthy to go on and be a leader in the early church, Mike brown stole some cigars and is  only worthy and deserving of the 6 shots he received, even if the officer in the situation wasn’t aware of it at the time. This is not to cast dispersion on ChristianForums.com, it’s a good place overall. I’ve asked for and received prayer there, and submitted questions to the ask a Chaplin section, and received very helpful replies. Also, as I said there is opposing views to balance out what I consider “the bad”. It just bothers me that (some) people who are my brothers and sisters in Christ (according to the bible, if not in their own minds) truly believe black people are superhuman, bullet proof, rowdy, violent machines and everyone should fear us coming for your wallets and your daughters at knife point.

In light of all this,  I’d like to see an effort on behalf of pastors who have a national and international audience address these issues.  Reprimand the members who would other wise look down upon and separate themselves from or even seek to harm or discriminate against other members who are all of the same Body.  Get us to stop cutting ourselves, and doing harm to the body of Christ. I’d like them to tell the youth why the church is not outdated, and black youth specifically why it still applies to them. (A word of warning:  Young people have a BS detector that is unmatched in this universe. They know when someone is being real, when someone is speaking on what they truly believe,  and when someone is just spewing talking points because it is what they are expected to say. They are also highly observant when it comes to disparities in how they and others around them are treated, and will write someone off with the quickness who is being less than genuine.)

Now, I may come off sounding as ignorant as those who question “Where is the outrage about black on black crime?” Who assume because they haven’t seen it, there is none. (Though that is a separate, made up issue,  the existence of such crime does not justify or nullify the existence of brutality at the hands of official police authority). Perhaps there had been an effort to discuss race, and I just haven’t seen it. I am not as avid a watcher of television ministries as I have been in the past, and it’s quite possible I missed it. I don’t recall anyone speaking out on race since Fred Price, and even he said he got flack and lost relationships over it. So if you have seen such a sermon, or your pastor has had such discussion please share, as  I’d like my hope renewed. My faith in God is absolute. His servants? Not so much.

~~~~~~~

Comments about Ferguson made by clergy I have seen so far:

TD Jakes:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/bishop-td-jakes/a-fathers-cry-for-justice_b_5691027.html

TD Jakes daughter, Sarah:

http://sarahjakes.com/ferguson/

I thought I had seen a video response posted of Fred Price Jr. speaking on Ferguson. I was planning to watch it later, but I am unable to find it, and searching turned up nothing.

I  came across this just as I was going to post this blog piece. He gets it, I think:
http://www.ncregister.com/daily-news/st.-louis-archbishop-the-issue-is-bigger-than-ferguson-america/

~~~~~~~

Scripture references used:

Galatians 6:9 Matthew 5:39  Isaiah 63:9  Jeremiah 29:11 Galatians 3:28 1 John 4:20-21
John 13:34-35 1 John 2:9-11 1 John 3:15  Galatians 6:7 Luke 6:45  Matthew 12:34
Proverbs 14:12  Romans 12:21 Hebrews 4:12 Galatians 1:10


%d bloggers like this: