A Critique of Spiritual Vigilantes by Danny Shelton


(Danny Shelton) #30

I don’t usually answer “ghosts”, but in this case the writer is hiding behind a fake name. I won’t deal with all the accusations by him or her. I think the so-called critique would make a nice book to be written unless he/she is already using someone else’s words. I’m sorry, but when someone hides out on these chat sites I have come to be a little suspicious of what they have to say.
Since this person claims to be an ordained minister I would like to ask him/her a question. “Would you administer the wedding vows of two homosexuals that are committing to live as a married couple? If so, why? If not, why not?
You made the statement that couples are not married by the wedding vows performed by a preacher, but they are married according to the state laws. Does this mean that all of the people in the Old Testament, for instance, were not married at all because there was no “State” to offer them a marriage license? My understanding from the Bible, is that the couple was married in the sight of God when they vowed before Him to live as husband and wife (when they “went into the tent”).
I also read where the guidelines of Spectrum specify that topics are to be discussed and NOT the individuals. Several of you have violated this guideline by throwing stones at me. I’m not here to defend my personal/public life with you. I can tell you that each of you who made the personal comments did so in violation of Bible principle. Why? Because you are tale-bearing as you don’t actually KNOW any of the facts involved. You are repeating gossip.
It seems the writer, whoever you are, spends an incredible amount of words describing my “ignorance” of the “two Americas”. I’ll make a statement and then I have a question for you. In case you don’t know it, I am the the Executive Producer and co-founder of Dare To Dream 24/7 television network. It is the only Black televison network in the SDA church. Why did I step out in faith to build an urban network if I am so ignorant of Black America’s needs? I had to raise tremendous amounts of money to start and continue to grow this very necessary inner-city channel managed by co-founder Yvonne Lewis Shelton. The project was initiated before Yvonne ever came to 3ABN. Friend and former 3ABN board member, Wintley Phipps, painstakingly educated me of the economic disparities between Blacks and Whites. Consequently, we discussed starting a 24/7 Black urban channel. However, it did not come into fruition until Yvonne Lewis came to 3ABN, and started the Dare to Dream network. We address inner-city challenges with programming targeting those specific needs. For example, “Workin ‘The Dream”, which teaches resume preparation and job readiness, and how to take God into the workplace. “The New Journey” is a program of victory for ex-offenders, hosted by an ex-offender. The testimonies are riveting and demonstrate the transforming power of the Holy Spirit. “Pure Choices”, which is our program on sexual purity, teaches the importance of morality and abstinence for singles. As you know, the incidence of children born out of wedlock in the black community is about 75%. “Dollars and Sen$e” is a program that teaches financial literacy and money management. This list goes on and on. You can tune into d2dnetwork.tv to view the array of programming for yourself.
I understand that you are a card-carrying NAACP member and that is your choice. We have chosen to provide our inner-city youth with life changing educational and spiritual programming. We believe the best way to even the odds, if you will, for our young black youth is to accomplish this through media.
Although I may not agree with all of your opinions of what I wrote in the book, I do think your critique was well written. I would love the chance to meet the real you to exchange ideas that can help heal the divide between Black and White SDA’s!


(Frankmer7) #31

Why is administering wedding vows four separate times to the same person any less controversial in a Christian setting than gay marriage? Glass houses comes to mind…

Frank


#32

Ouch, I cannot for the life of me imagine Jesus writing such a review whether He agreed or not. The author does so like to be heard in sharp witty tones methinks.


(Harry Allen) #33

Hey, @DannyS: Glad you’ve seen fit to stop by.

I’m not the author of the above essay. However, I am an actual Black person. Also, I’m involved in media as a writer and, until a couple of years ago, as a broadcaster. Finally, I’m a long-time 3ABN fan. I think I can link this all together for you, if you’ll just walk with me, here:

Regarding the gossip about your marriages (the “stones” thrown at you): I think those of us who watched and enjoyed 3ABN were distressed by what we saw in 2004. Certainly, you have a right to your privacy, and you did thirteen years ago, too. And, yes, the guidelines of Spectrum specify that topics are to be discussed, and not individuals. However, if the topic is a book on moral failure, well, your alleged actions toward women have become a part of your narrative. To, now, ask that these matters not be considered seems clueless on your part.

I think it is with this that the writer of this review is charging you: cluelessness. First, what’s implied is that, because of how your marriage(s) played out in public, you lack the credibility to speak out against spiritual vigilantism.

Second, more widely, as the author repeatedly states, the logic of religious and political conservatives typically seems rife with contradictions; i.e., nonsense and double standards. By this, I mean of the sort that pushed Republican anti-abortion zealot Tim Murphy to mutedly plead that his mistress get an abortion, or that, now, drives Judge Roy Moore to loudly proclaim the authority of the Ten Commandments while allegedly hiding a fancy for teenage flesh.

Regarding Dare to Dream, your channel doesn’t release numbers. So, it’s impossible to tell if it’s reaching an audience. But your book and its apparently preachy tone are relevant, here: Why would African-Americans trust people with these politics?

I don’t know what Yvonne Lewis or Wintley Phipps has told you. But many, if not most, Black people see high white culpability for Black ills. In other words, “inner-city challenges” are torsionally counter-balanced by white opportunities and disdain.

This should not surprise anyone who can look at American history in a straight line. Many white Americans absolutely cannot. That they are unable to see what is so obvious and intimate to Black people infuriates us, and brings us back to “do”: Why would African-Americans trust people with these politics?

HA


(Danny Shelton) #34

Thanks, Harry. It’s nice to talk to a real person…that’s a good start. Divorce in the Bible is not a sin. The sin comes from “why the divorce”. Divorce is not the unpardonable sin, as some want to make out. While I am not condoning sin, my point is this: If people want to make statements about me and divorce, they should only make statements that they know to be true. Simply put, some of what is said about me is a lie. And to tell you the truth, I’m used to it. One of the biggest sins in the SDA church, in my opinion, is the rumor mill! You and ghost writer believe that I am rendered “clueless” because I would expect a Christian site to restrict people’s comments to the Bible principle of no gossiping, throwing out innuendos, tale bearing etc.?
I’m still in ministry because God is willing to use anyone who is willing to be used. I admit that I am a sinner and that I’m saved by grace. The Bible says “All who live Godly SHALL suffer persecution.” Hopefully, you and the ghost writer are suffering some kind of persecution because you are willing to be sold out to Jesus and not to politics or culture.
The Devil hates those who are in ministry. Attacks against the character of those spreading the gospel go all the way back to the Old Testament. In fact, there are movies that have been made and books written that accuse Jesus of either being gay or having an affair with Mary M. It was false accusations that cried for Him to be nailed to the cross. I’m not Jesus, and neither are you or the ghost writer, but the principle is the same.
Are you ready to denounce Dr. Martin Luther King because of his alleged affairs? He allegedly had a moral weakness for women. Should he then be discounted for championing the moral issue of human rights? I doubt his personal life has caused you to render him clueless when it comes to all the moral issues he fought for! In fact, there is a movement going on right now where the NAACP is trying to stop Dr. King’s personal information from going public. I think most of us know the answer as to why they don’t want his personal business to become public, right? Are you willing to hold Dr. King to the same moral standard that you are holding me to when it comes to writing or championing moral issues? When it comes to me, you don’t seem to care about the facts. You say my discrediting comes from allegations. There are numerous allegations against the Rev. King about his affairs with many women.
Already you write about Judge Moore, when there have been no proven facts. Did you jump on Hillary’s emails and accusations taking millions and millions of dollars from foreign governments, to mean the she was “clueless” and should not run for President?
As I see it, both you and the ghost writer have quite a problem to deal with in our discussion. The SDA church is considered conservative when it comes to religious groups. Yet, in your politics you appear liberal. How do you reconcile the two extremely different paths you are taking?
If you are a SDA, how can you justify voting for people who supported and championed same-sex marriage, as did former President Obama? How can you support those in office who believe it is ok to kill innocent babies, when this position totally goes against your belief in keeping all 10 commandments?
How can you tell others, Christian or non-Christian that they should keep ALL Ten Commandments including the Sabbath, when you, by your words and voting actions do away with “thou shalt not kill” and the adultery commandment?
I don’t personally know the ghost writer on this site who critiqued my book; but I can tell you that he spent much more time dealing in the physical than in the spiritual. He unleashed years of built up venom…
Anyone reading my book can tell that he didn’t come up with all of his information because I wrote a book that he thought was off the wall. He obviously has disdain for White people and tends to judge others such as myself because of all of his years dealing with cultural issues as a Black man in America. That’s why I said that his critique may be good reading in a book that he could author. But in his critique he went way beyond what I actually wrote in my book. Did you notice that both you and he tend to stereotype White people? My wife is Black, so I know how she feels about being stereotyped… We have learned from each other. She now sees that stereotyping can go both ways, which violates biblical principles.
SDA’s should be able to rise above all of the resentments that they have for each other because of the color of someone’s skin. Christ is coming back for a purified bride, not a divided church.
You and the ghost writer both refer to me as not having any idea of what is like to be Black in America. And that is correct. You, on the other hand have no idea what it is like to be a poor White in this country. You tend to group all Whites as privileged and all Blacks as targets by White people.
Much of the disparity in today’s America has to do with economics. Ask billionaire Oprah about how unfairly people treat her. Look at the privileges that Black athletes and movie stars get verses poor Whites. Does anyone believe that OJ Simpson was not guilty of murdering his White wife? I could go on and on, but I’ll keep it short. Everyone knew that Richard Pryor was using drugs, but did he spend time in prison for it? While there is still prejudice and racism, we shouldn’t blame all of it on the color of someone’s skin. The wealthy in this country of ours enjoy privileges, Black and White.
Back to my topic. The ghost writer mocked me for not bringing up GOP sins. I did notice that the ghost writer, who claims to be an SDA minister, did not call out Obama for campaigning and championing same-sex marriage all the way to the Supreme Court. Would he have been silent on the subject of same sex-marriage if Mitt Romney had made this a major part of his platform while campaigning for President?
Did you or the ghost writer vote for Obama knowing that he would pass a federal law that makes a mockery of God’s crowning creation male and female? How many Black SDA’s voted for Obama purely because he is Black? Isn’t this in itself prejudiced and racist? Voting for someone because of the color of his skin? Or voting against someone because of the color of his skin?
I’m White, but I would not vote for anyone who campaigned on same-sex marriage. Had Donald Trump run his campaign on passing a national Sunday law, I wouldn’t have voted for him, and I would have discouraged all SDA’s from voting for him.
The truth is, I didn’t vote for him. Neither did I vote for Hillary. I would not have voted for Romney (even though he is White), if Romney had campaigned for same-sex marriage. By the way, I didn’t vote for him either.
The ghost writer says that I called Obama and Clinton out about same-sex marriage and abortion, but I did not call out the other side such as Donald Trump’s terrible remarks about women. There is a reason for this. There have always been terrible sinful people in this world, and politicians are no exception to the rule. The reason I called out Obama and Hillary is that they championed same-sex marriage, which is anti-Bible, anti-Christian and anti-SDA beliefs to be made law of the land! When the government of the United States passed a law re-defining marriage, it was in opposition to God’s law. This is the same as a National Sunday Law being passed. We as a nation will face the consequences of our rebellion.
I find it interesting that a number of prominent Black SDA’s made a video in support of the football player bending his knee when the National Anthem is being played. Many pastors support Black Lives Matter BUT I never heard or saw one video where they stood up against then President Obama who campaigned on making same-sex marriage law of the land. Let me ask you: if Donald Trump had campaigned on passing a National Sunday Law would you all have been as silent as you were when Obama ran on passing same-sex legislation?
What’s my point? My point is that I feel like there are things that some of you don’t have a spiritual clue about also. The shame of it is, that our SDA ministers, Black and White, should stand up for what is right in the spiritual context, not what fits our racial or political profile. We as SDA’s should be lifting up Jesus Christ and Him crucified to a lost and dying world. If people come to the knowledge of Christ, love will bring us together as sons and daughters and heirs to the kingdom of God.
There is one last point that I want to make concerning the support for my book by Black SDA members. I can tell you that of the over 800,000 of the Spiritual Vigilantes books that have been distributed, more than half are being used as evangelistic tools by Black SDA members of this church. As I travel to various churches, many Black members express how necessary it is to speak out about the issues covered in my book. They see what is happening with current events from a biblical perspective.
In closing, no one can force others to put aside their prejudices. Until we as a church learn that no one is perfect and that we all make mistakes, we will never be able to look past our differences to become one body in Christ.


#35

Danny, thinking about 3ABN gives me a sinking feeling, like the whole thing is past the point of no return.

I know someone who works there with whom I avoid speaking because I feel heartsick about it, and I don’t want to cause more discouragement than I sense is already there. I also know one of your relatives.

When I was an Adventist, I felt assured that our leaders, as shepherds of the flock, would be held to the highest standards. I was devastated when I found out firsthand that this was not the case, in fact, quite the opposite.

Laquering over things with convoluted and confusing words will not suffice in the end.

I have all the love and forgiveness in the world for you as a person, for I have been forgiven much myself, but some people should not be leaders. Sometimes, as with Samuel Pippim, it’s just too late.

I think you are not mindful of what a mess this is, and the disgrace it brings on your beloved church, and the harm your example causes by normalizing what should never be normalized.

It brings everything down. I know you don’t mean it to, but some things cannot be walked back when you are a public figure and example. The amount of brokeness it would require is almost beyond imagination.

I am only allowed one comment.

I wish you all the best.


(Danny Shelton) #36

Also, I noted that neither the ghost writer or Harry answered my concerns that the SDA minister sees marriage as a civil union administered by the state, rather than seeing marriage between one man and one woman, as a sacred union instituted by our creator God. They can’t agree with me that marriage is a sacred union between one man and one woman or they would have to denounce the liberal left and the NAACP stance in supporting the gay community to unite under the state in marriage, which is totally contrary to God’s law.
This is an example of what I meant when I said in my last statement that the ghost writer spends much more time trying to sell the reader on the physical side of life from his eyes rather than use Bible principle. He actually justifies that it is “right” to pledge allegiance to earthly organizations who throw out the law of God. He says he is a card-carrying NAACP member who supports gay marriage. I would discourage any SDA Christian from joining organizations that trample on the law of God. Democratic Party, Republican Party, Black Lives Matter etc.
If you support Black Lives Matter then you support the promotion of the gay and lesbian lifestyle. How do I know? I read it on the Black Lives Matter’s website! Look it up for yourself. Here is one quote from Black Lives Matter’s website: “We foster a queer‐affirming network. When we gather, we do so with the intention of freeing ourselves from the tight grip of heteronormative thinking, or rather, the belief that all in the world are heterosexual (unless s/he or they disclose otherwise).” I would encourage the reader to go to the website. They say similar things regarding transgenders. Some SDA ministers are encouraging their members to support and protest with the Black Lives Matter organization. While the ghost writer may have much of his history right… two wrongs do not make a right. Just because you have been done wrong in so many ways does not give a SDA minister or any SDA member the biblical right to join earthly groups who trample God’s laws. Maybe the SDA ghost writer preacher should additionally become a member of the Catholic Church, for instance, as they do great work around the world. They feed the homeless and have created the world’s largest health institutions. They have built a tremendous amount of orphanages that feed, clothe, and educate young people around the world, etc, etc. My guess is that he is not a card-carrying Catholic, as he is able to see that while they do much great work, they are not God’s remnant church. In fact, if he is like other SDA ministers, he sees the Catholic system as the antichrist system that is prophesied in Daniel and Revelation. When it comes to Catholicism he understands that Satan can come as an angel of light to deceive the world. If we take our eyes off of the word of God to fight all of our own battles in the flesh we will lose big time. Read Exodus 14:14 “The Lord will fight for you and you will hold your peace”. At some point we must do our best but trust God to do the rest.


(Harry Allen) #37

Hi, @DannyS. Good to hear from you, and thanks for this response.

Spectrum’s motto is “Community Through Conversation.” Yet, seemingly counterintuitively, they’ve chosen to manage discussion on the site by limiting writers “to one comment per article, unless the author of the article directly engages you in further conversation. … Comments that fail to meet these criteria will be removed,” they promise.

Technically, I’ve used up my one comment already, in my earlier response to you. You are already at three comments.

What’s odd here, though, is that, while not the author of the article, you are the subject of the article. Common sense indicates that, then, this email falls well within Spectrum’s guidelines. However, they have not been clear on the matter.

Despite this, here’s my response to the first of your two posts to me:

You said:

Divorce in the Bible is not a sin. The sin comes from “why the divorce”. Divorce is not the unpardonable sin, as some want to make out. While I am not condoning sin, my point is this: If people want to make statements about me and divorce, they should only make statements that they know to be true. Simply put, some of what is said about me is a lie. And to tell you the truth, I’m used to it. One of the biggest sins in the SDA church, in my opinion, is the rumor mill!

In response:

You’re correct, Danny, that divorce is not a sin. However, in Malachi 2:16, God says he hates it. So, we can agree that divorce isn’t something of which God approves.

Also, you’re correct when you say, “If people want to make statements about me and divorce, they should only make statements that they know to be true.”

So, here are some statements that I know to be true:

• Once married, one’s ties, and commitments, to one’s spouse end at the death of that spouse. The only acceptable dissolution of the marital tie before death is if that spouse commits adultery. That is, if one’s spouse commits adultery, one may divorce them. It is not required that one do so, of course. One may forgive them and take them back. But one is not required to do so. The aggrieved spouse may divorce, and remarry, while the offending spouse may not do so, ever.

• The dictionary definition of “adultery” is, “Voluntary sexual intercourse,” or coitus, “between a married man and someone other than his wife or between a married woman and someone other than her husband.”

The word “voluntary” is key here. What it means, for example, is that if one’s wife engages in an act of sexual intercourse against her will, she is not guilty of adultery; e.g., if she is raped, for example.

However, because the secondary dictionary of “sexual intercourse” is “intercourse (such as anal or oral intercourse) that does not involve penetration of the vagina by the penis,” this also means that if one’s spouse voluntarily engages in these acts with another person, even if there is no coitus, they are committing adultery.

• There is no such act as “spiritual adultery” in the setting of a marital relationship. In other words, the Bible does not define such a thing, nor is there a common understanding of it in marital law. There is no such term in the dictionary.

Indeed, upon doing a Google search, most uses of the term refer to Israel’s rebellion against God in the Old Testament; their repeated disobedience over centuries; the actions which ultimately led to their exile, and that God called adultery.

So, biblically, one cannot divorce their wife because they think that they are cheating on them. One cannot do so because they hear them whispering on the phone to another man. One cannot even do so because she’s spent time in another man’s home. In these instances, the Bible, and the courts, give us means to rectify such situations in ways that minimize conflict, and that preserve the dignity of each spouse.

In other words, the spirit of the biblical text suggests that, if one thinks one’s spouse is being unfaithful, God would rather one remain married to that spouse, and certify that they are committing adultery—beyond a reasonable doubt, let’s say—than to be wrong and divorce them, based on unfounded suspicion.

• If a man were to wrongly divorce his wife—if he were to suspect that she had committed adultery, but she had not—and marry another woman, he would be committing adultery with the new wife. Were he to divorce that woman—or were she to abandon him—and he marry another, he would be committing adultery with the subsequent wife, because God would only recognize the original coupling; i.e., the one with the woman he wrongly divorced.

You said:

You and ghost writer believe that I am rendered “clueless” because I would expect a Christian site to restrict people’s comments to the Bible principle of no gossiping, throwing out innuendos, tale bearing etc.?

In response:

No. I’m saying you appear clueless to the degree that you don’t think:

a) Your divorce of Linda Shelton put a lingering cloud over 3ABN and its ministry; one that raised questions, not only about your morality, but that of your on-air colleagues, because they continued on as though nothing were happening, while it appeared that Ms. Shelton was being horribly mistreated.

I’m not saying that this is what happened. I’m saying that this is how it looked to many of us who just watch the channel. Sadly, you never seemed to find a way to put this all in the correct context.

Again, you have a right to your privacy. But the cost of privacy, in your case, was clarity; the content of your witness regarding the subject of marriage. Also, since you run a broadcasting company, of which you are also the lead host, with every new occupant in the chair next to yours—Brandy Elswick, Yvonne Lewis—your testimony becomes more and more unclear.

b) Many people won’t take you seriously as a moral arbiter, because of a)

c) Many people, especially many Black people, see white religio-political conservatives as hypocrites. So, if you’re going to start a channel aimed at Black people, but espouse conservative talking points, my best to you.

You said:

I’m still in ministry because God is willing to use anyone who is willing to be used. I admit that I am a sinner and that I’m saved by grace. The Bible says “All who live Godly SHALL suffer persecution.” Hopefully, you and the ghost writer are suffering some kind of persecution because you are willing to be sold out to Jesus and not to politics or culture.

In response:

O.K.

You said:

Are you ready to denounce Dr. Martin Luther King because of his alleged affairs? He allegedly had a moral weakness for women.

In response:

Great question.

I denounce Martin Luther King’s infidelities. They were against the law of God.

You said:

Should he then be discounted for championing the moral issue of human rights?

In response:

He should be discounted for cheating on his wife; yes.

In other words, he should be discounted for those actions, in proportion to their centrality in his message.

So, what does that mean?

It means that his reputation chiefly remains intact, because, for the most part, he wasn’t fighting against cheating in America. He was fighting against racism in America, and he didn’t practice racism.

Now, as he stated, and you and others have affirmed, his claim had an essentially moral core. So, any wavering on his part was deleterious to his message.

However, white oppression was, and is, so severe, that many Black people see such shortcomings as lesser ills, compared to the global one of white supremacy. In other words, white calls for his censure and reassessment, on the basis of his infidelities, are seen by many Black people, if not most, as fundamentally hypocritical.

You said:

I doubt his personal life has caused you to render him clueless when it comes to all the moral issues he fought for!

In response:

See above.

You said:

In fact, there is a movement going on right now where the NAACP is trying to stop Dr. King’s personal information from going public. I think most of us know the answer as to why they don’t want his personal business to become public, right?

In response:

If they are doing so, yes, it’s clear why they’re doing this, and they should not do it.

You said:

Are you willing to hold Dr. King to the same moral standard that you are holding me to when it comes to writing or championing moral issues?

In response:

I am, and I have. See above.

You said:

When it comes to me, you don’t seem to care about the facts. You say my discrediting comes from allegations. There are numerous allegations against the Rev. King about his affairs with many women.

In response:

It’s interesting you say this, Danny, because, from my perspective, it seems like it’s you who don’t care about facts.

In other words, you haven’t cared about facts enough to set the record straight on why you divorced Linda Shelton and Brandy Shelton. You haven’t made it clear to how many marriages you think a man is entitled.

You said:

Already you write about Judge Moore, when there have been no proven facts. Did you jump on Hillary’s emails and accusations taking millions and millions of dollars from foreign governments, to mean the she was “clueless” and should not run for President?

In response:

What I’ll say, here, is that it’s false equivalences of this sort that make many people say white conservatives are morally bankrupt.

I’ll leave it at that.

You said:

As I see it, both you and the ghost writer have quite a problem to deal with in our discussion. The SDA church is considered conservative when it comes to religious groups. Yet, in your politics you appear liberal. How do you reconcile the two extremely different paths you are taking?

In response:

The answer is that the SDA church doesn’t decide my politics. I get my theology, mostly, from the SDA church. I get my politics from my experiences, moderated by the Holy Spirit.

You said:

If you are a SDA, how can you justify voting for people who supported and championed same-sex marriage, as did former President Obama? How can you support those in office who believe it is ok to kill innocent babies, when this position totally goes against your belief in keeping all 10 commandments?
How can you tell others, Christian or non-Christian that they should keep ALL Ten Commandments including the Sabbath, when you, by your words and voting actions do away with “thou shalt not kill” and the adultery commandment?

In response:

I do it by voting and agitating for the things in which I believe, but at the same time understanding that, in a civil society, there is only so far that this can go.

So, for example, I believe that marriage is only for men and women, mostly because the Bible says this, and I believe in the Bible’s authority for moral issues. But I live in a country where not everyone agrees with this, or in the validity of the Bible for setting communal standards.

So, what I do is state what I believe and want. But I do so in a Christian manner, and, after a certain point, I turn the decision over to the electorate, then abide by that decision to the degree my conscience allows…while doing so in a Christian manner.

You said:

Did you notice that both you and [“the ghost writer”] tend to stereotype White people?

In response:

I did not, and I do not. The only statement I made about white people was the final sentence, in bold, below:

“In other words, ‘inner-city challenges’ are torsionally counter-balanced by white opportunities and disdain. This should not surprise anyone who can look at American history in a straight line. Many white Americans absolutely cannot.

This is a true statement: Many white Americans absolutely cannot. Why are you saying that it is a stereotype?

You said:

My wife is Black …

In response:

All right.

You said:

… so I know how she feels about being stereotyped… We have learned from each other. She now sees that stereotyping can go both ways, which violates biblical principles.

In response:

This is a false equivalence, too, Danny.

I haven’t said anything about “stereotypes.” But since you raise the issue, your wife will probably also agree that, since white people dominate non-white people through a global power system, the “stereotyping” we mutually do of each other is not of equal tonnage.

You said:

SDA’s should be able to rise above all of the resentments that they have for each other because of the color of someone’s skin. Christ is coming back for a purified bride, not a divided church.

In response:

O.K.

You said:

You and the ghost writer both refer to me as not having any idea of what is like to be Black in America. And that is correct.

In response:

It may be correct, but I did not make any statements about your conceptions of Black life.

Also, I never use terms like, “Black in America.”

You said:

You, on the other hand have no idea what it is like to be a poor White in this country.

In response:

I tend to avoid making definitive statements about other people’s mental states, as you’ve done here.

I can’t say that I know what it’s like to be a poor white person in this country. But, perhaps, I know exactly what it’s like to be a poor white person in this country.

I can’t say, because that would require someone having access to both 1) my mental states, and 2) a poor white person’s mental states. In other words, only God can say what I know, including if I know what it’s like to be a poor white person in this country.

You said:

You tend to group all Whites as privileged and all Blacks as targets by White people.

In response:

What I say is this: Because white supremacy is a deceitful, global system, all white people are racist suspects, and all non-white people are victims of racism.

That’s exactly what I say, because that’s exactly what I mean.

You said:

Much of the disparity in today’s America has to do with economics. Ask billionaire Oprah about how unfairly people treat her. Look at the privileges that Black athletes and movie stars get verses poor Whites. Does anyone believe that OJ Simpson was not guilty of murdering his White wife? I could go on and on, but I’ll keep it short. Everyone knew that Richard Pryor was using drugs, but did he spend time in prison for it? While there is still prejudice and racism, we shouldn’t blame all of it on the color of someone’s skin. The wealthy in this country of ours enjoy privileges, Black and White.

In response:

I won’t take the time to disentangle this.

What I’ll say is that Economics are dominated by the white supremacists, also. So, among other facts, what that means is that “rich” Black people are dominated by race, and “poor” white people are not.

You said:

Did you or the ghost writer vote for Obama knowing that he would pass a federal law that makes a mockery of God’s crowning creation male and female?

In response:

I didn’t know President Obama would support same-sex marriage. Initially, he did not, either.

You said:

How many Black SDA’s voted for Obama purely because he is Black?

In response:

I don’t know, but I suspect the majority of them did.

You said:

Isn’t this in itself prejudiced and racist? Voting for someone because of the color of his skin? Or voting against someone because of the color of his skin?

In response:

It’s racist when white people do it. It’s not racist when Black people do it. When Black people do it, it’s a reaction to racism.

You said:

I find it interesting that a number of prominent Black SDA’s made a video in support of the football player bending his knee when the National Anthem is being played. Many pastors support Black Lives Matter BUT I never heard or saw one video where they stood up against then President Obama who campaigned on making same-sex marriage law of the land.

In response:

Many Black people find the matter of whether they or their children will be shot and killed by police, for no reason and/or to no avail, more urgent than if someone can marry another person of their own gender.

Further, white people—not even white so-called Christians—generally don’t seem to find these killings that outrageous. So, Black people tend to focus more of their energy on this issue because they are mostly alone in doing so.

You said:

Let me ask you: if Donald Trump had campaigned on passing a National Sunday Law would you all have been as silent as you were when Obama ran on passing same-sex legislation?

In response:

Who’s “you all”?

You said:

What’s my point? My point is that I feel like there are things that some of you don’t have a spiritual clue about also.

In response:

Who is “some of you”?

You said:

The shame of it is, that our SDA ministers, Black and White, should stand up for what is right in the spiritual context, not what fits our racial or political profile. We as SDA’s should be lifting up Jesus Christ and Him crucified to a lost and dying world. If people come to the knowledge of Christ, love will bring us together as sons and daughters and heirs to the kingdom of God.

In response:

O.K.

You said:

There is one last point that I want to make concerning the support for my book by Black SDA members. I can tell you that of the over 800,000 of the Spiritual Vigilantes books that have been distributed, more than half are being used as evangelistic tools by Black SDA members of this church. As I travel to various churches, many Black members express how necessary it is to speak out about the issues covered in my book. They see what is happening with current events from a biblical perspective.

In response:

Even if true:

i) My impression was that Dare to Dream exists to reach Black non-Adventists and non-Christians; people who may not be as conservative as Black SDAs.

ii) My guess is that many Black Adventists do think that these issues should be addressed. I certainly do. The question is not that you address them. My question is how do you address them?

iii) Many Black Adventists are not going to express their counter-positions to you, in personal and live settings, because, in the SDA church, you’re a famous white person that people generally like, and who leads a ministry that they think has high value. In my case, none of these facts overrides the need for directness with you.

You said:

In closing, no one can force others to put aside their prejudices. Until we as a church learn that no one is perfect and that we all make mistakes, we will never be able to look past our differences to become one body in Christ.

In response:

O.K.

HA


(Harry Allen) #38

Thanks, @DannyS, for your 2nd response.

As it turns out, you posted it to yourself. So, at first, I didn’t see that you’d sent it.

In any event:

You said:

Also, I noted that neither the ghost writer or Harry answered my concerns that the SDA minister sees marriage as a civil union administered by the state, rather than seeing marriage between one man and one woman, as a sacred union instituted by our creator God. They can’t agree with me that marriage is a sacred union between one man and one woman or they would have to denounce the liberal left and the NAACP stance in supporting the gay community to unite under the state in marriage, which is totally contrary to God’s law.

In response:

See my earlier response on same-sex marriage.

You said:

If you support Black Lives Matter then you support the promotion of the gay and lesbian lifestyle. How do I know? I read it on the Black Lives Matter’s website! Look it up for yourself. Here is one quote from Black Lives Matter’s website: “We foster a queer‐affirming network. When we gather, we do so with the intention of freeing ourselves from the tight grip of heteronormative thinking, or rather, the belief that all in the world are heterosexual (unless s/he or they disclose otherwise).” I would encourage the reader to go to the website. They say similar things regarding transgenders. Some SDA ministers are encouraging their members to support and protest with the Black Lives Matter organization.

In response:

Please see what I said, previously. In short, the issue of police brutality is of ultra-high priority for Black people, because, in a certain sense, it’s all-encompassing.

If white conservatives want to put Black Lives Matter out of business, the way to do it is to use your political power to make sure that Black people are treated equitably by the police. If you do so, BLM will evaporate like a mist.

You said:

While the ghost writer may have much of his history right… two wrongs do not make a right. Just because you have been done wrong in so many ways does not give a SDA minister or any SDA member the biblical right to join earthly groups who trample God’s laws.

In response:

What are your plans, then, Danny, to give up your American citizenship?

HA


(Danny Shelton) #39

Hi Harry, Since I don’t know the rules very well myself on this site, I would love to get your email address so that we can continue this conversation privately… if you choose to, of course.
If Spectrum would allow it, I would love to deal with your false narrative that I divorced Linda on grounds of spiritual adultery. You have read too many gossip columns. Do you really think I could have stayed in ministry and have been supported all these 131/2 years from the General Conference President to people like Mark Finley (who was Linda’s marriage counselor), if I had no grounds for divorce.? There is nothing in the Bible that says we are to publically expose other people’s sin. In fact, there is plenty of evidence against it.
I would love to address your statement that you didn’t know that former President Obama ran his second term campaign with the same-sex agenda as a major platform item. Yvonne voted for Obama the first election, but did NOT vote for him the second time because of this platform. Not sure where you were during all of this, as so far, you seem to be fairly well informed on politics.
I would love to hear your thoughts on why you don’t stand up against black-on-black violence that is the number one foe of the black male. If black lives is the main concern, then there should be much more protesting in the urban communities where thousands of young black men are dying at the hands of other young black males. We as SDA’s should concentrate on inner-city evangelism. When you are ready to do this, please let me know and I will be willing to involve 3ABN by giving you a platform to raise the finances needed to help this cause, which should be dear to all of us.
I’m really interested in discussing why numerous times you talk about white conservatives as though they are ALL one person… I think this is called stereotyping.
I would love to understand your mindset as to why you think it is ok to be suspect of all conservative whites about their intentions to blacks. This seems like racial profiling to me. I wonder if this principle would apply to many white people in general, or to white police when they encounter inner-city black males who are small in number yet commit more than 50% of major felonies. BOTH ARE WRONG!
I would love to hear more of your thoughts on how you can dismiss some sin such as same-sex marriage in trade-offs with groups that you think will help your cause. It sounds very much like what you are accusing early SDA’s and conservitive Christians of doing. They were justifying their sins. You seem to pick up on this when it is done you to, but not when you do it to others.
I would love to discuss whether you would use this same reasoning when Sunday worship is made law of the land here in America. Will that still be on the bottom of the totem pole for people such as yourself and Trevor, that it will be considered a minor issue?
I assume your comment about denouncing my American citizenship was done tongue-in-cheek. As you well know that a person does not choose the country they are born in, just like you didn’t choose to be born black and I didn’t choose to be born white. There is only one perfect country and I’m plannng on moving there when Jesus takes us home.
I also would love to find out why you and ghost writer can be part of the SDA church with all the terrible racist people that started and still control this church.
We can deal with these subjects on this site so people can follow and decide what they choose, or we can trade emails and do it privately. One of my emails is danshelton@earthlink.net
There’s one last thing that I would love to discuss with you. At some point, don’t we all have to take some blame for our directions in life? So far, you seem to suggest that white supremacy dominates everything. It would be interesting to hear how you think Obama got 47% of the white vote, if America’s all about white supremacy.
I will have these conversations because I do care about fairness and equality to all people. I believe as SDA’s can’t come together if we don’t have these kind of candid discussions. Should the Andrews professor want to join in with his real name I am happy to include him in this process.


(Harry Allen) #40

Hi, @DannyS:

You said:

Hi Harry, Since I don’t know the rules very well myself on this site, I would love to get your email address so that we can continue this conversation privately… if you choose to, of course.

In response:

Of course. Let us do that.

You said:

If Spectrum would allow it, I would love to deal with your false narrative that I divorced Linda on grounds of spiritual adultery. You have read too many gossip columns.

In response:

This isn’t my narrative, Danny. This is the narrative that developed from a combination of:

a) Linda vanishing from the screens of 3ABN, without explanation;

b) Her own published statements about her alleged subsequent mistreatment;

c) The written statements of her associates about what happened;

d) E-mails written by you, apparently, commenting on your marriage, the timing of the divorce, property, and related matters;

e) Open legal documents;

f) The fact that you are on your 2nd wife since divorcing Linda;

g) The failure of 3BN to address or contextualize any of this in an age of social media.

I don’t get my information from gossip columns. As I said at the outset, I’m a journalist. So I know how to work from primary sources.

You said:

Do you really think I could have stayed in ministry and have been supported all these 131/2 years from the General Conference President to people like Mark Finley (who was Linda’s marriage counselor), if I had no grounds for divorce.?

In response:

Yes. I absolutely do think so. The church has weathered larger scandals with far less disclosure (e.g., Morris Venden; Davenport; its own complicity during both apartheid and, help us, the Rwandan genocide).

Further, I don’t know Mark Finley. However, I do know organizations and how they work.

So, if you’re asking could the General Conference of Seventh-Day Adventists “look the other way” in the case of a broken marriage, should doing so serve their long-term interests, I would respond by asking you: What counseling did Brandy get from Mark Finley?

You said:

There is nothing in the Bible that says we are to publically expose other people’s sin. In fact, there is plenty of evidence against it.

In response:

The Bible also says that the elder must be “the husband of one wife.” (1 Timothy 3:2) In Proverbs 22:1, it says, “A good reputation and respect are worth much more than silver and gold.” (CEV)

Throughout our exchange, I’ve repeatedly said that you have a right to privacy. But what I’ve also said is that 3ABN did not clarify what was happening between you and Linda, and it became a “story behind the story.” Whether “3ABN” means you, its board, or all the people at the dinner table in your “Mending Broken People” opening promo, this narrative went wildly, rapidly off the tracks.

You can talk about not exposing others’s sin. I agree with you. But if you think that what happened, and has happened since, is better than what I’m talking about, that clearly explains why 13 1/2 years later, this is still an oblique splatter across the channel’s history.

You said:

I would love to address your statement that you didn’t know that former President Obama ran his second term campaign with the same-sex agenda as a major platform item. Yvonne voted for Obama the first election, but did NOT vote for him the second time because of this platform. Not sure where you were during all of this, as so far, you seem to be fairly well informed on politics.

In response:

Thanks, but I’m really not that informed on politics. I didn’t even recall that the right of LGBTQIA people to marry and serve in the military was part of his 2nd term election platform until you mentioned it.

However, that didn’t move, and wouldn’t have moved, me to vote for Mitt Romney, or to not vote. I thought, and think, that Barack Obama’s overall view of the world was broader and more up-to-date than Romney’s.

I oppose same-sex marriage on biblical and other grounds. But I live in a secular society, with people who need another argument, in order to be persuaded. We haven’t lived in a theocracy for millennia. So, to the people who oppose same-sex marriage, etc., I say make your case. But after you do, and the vote is taken, don’t cry “Not fair!”

You said:

I would love to hear your thoughts on why you don’t stand up against black-on-black violence that is the number one foe of the black male. If black lives is the main concern, then there should be much more protesting in the urban communities where thousands of young black men are dying at the hands of other young black males.

In response:

I don’t because “black-on-black” crime is a racist slur.

It’s a boogeyman that white people use to scare folks when they don’t want to address the effects of white supremacy. It’s a red herring; a way to change the subject; a way to “make fun” of Black people, that being a chief racist tactic.

It’s a subject white people only raise when the issue of white people—cops—killing Black people is being discussed. As a group, white people show no other concern for murdered Black people. Citing their gruesomely harvested bodies is, thus, a cynical ploy

Plus, they have their own problems: People tend to kill the people around them, and white people do the same thing, at almost the same rates Black people do: The FBI says that, in 2014, the white-on-white murder rate was 82%. (The Black-on-Black rate was 90%.)

Yet, until this moment, you’ve never heard the term “white-on-white” crime, have you, Danny?

In all your life, watching the news, reading the paper, talking to your white friends, no one’s ever brought up “white-on-white” crime, dropping their heads and gently clucking their tongues.

Why is that, do you think?

After the devil, himself, the number one foe of the Black male is the system of white supremacy. I consider it the chief form of sin on the planet. The other ills Black people face are mere sniffles, compared to the cancer of racism.

You said:

We as SDA’s should concentrate on inner-city evangelism.

In response:

Yes.

But SDAs should also concentrate on “outer-city evangelism,” and on telling the white residents of those communities about the sin of white supremacy. They should counsel them with the words of Revelation 3:17: “You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.”

You said:

When you are ready to do this, please let me know and I will be willing to involve 3ABN by giving you a platform to raise the finances needed to help this cause, which should be dear to all of us.

In response:

Better yet, Danny: When you’re ready to talk to Black people in a way that they understand, based on the realities that they face, in the true strength of the Gospel, why don’t you let me know?

You said:

I’m really interested in discussing why numerous times you talk about white conservatives as though they are ALL one person… I think this is called stereotyping.

In response:

I’ve only talked about white conservatives in terms of what other people say about them. I’ve not characterized them myself.

You said:

I would love to understand your mindset as to why you think it is ok to be suspect of all conservative whites about their intentions to blacks.

In response:

See directly above.

You said:

This seems like racial profiling to me.

In response:

It’s not. Racial profiling is, so to speak, “stereotyping with the force of law behind it.”

You said:

I wonder if this principle would apply to many white people in general, or to white police when they encounter inner-city black males who are small in number yet commit more than 50% of major felonies. BOTH ARE WRONG!

In response:

You said, ”inner-city black males who are small in number yet commit more than 50% of major felonies.”

What is your source for these statistics, Danny? That is, the number of “inner-city males,” and their felony rate?

You said:

I would love to hear more of your thoughts on how you can dismiss some sin such as same-sex marriage in trade-offs with groups that you think will help your cause.

In response:

Thanks.

It’s simple: I don’t believe that police officers should kill unarmed Black people, and I don’t think that they should do so without penalty.

I have strong feelings about this, because a) I’m a Black person, and b) not only am I married to one, and related to many, but most of the people that I know, work with, and think are really interesting are Black.

However, because I live in a country where, for hundreds of years, Black people were imported—like cords of wood, or barrels of rum—then enslaved and terrorized, I think it’s hard for the political descendants of those importers and slavers to effectively see Black people as more than utilitarian. At least, that’s my guess; I could be wrong.

In any event, because, perhaps, of these social reasons, it’s hard to get people to take this up as a cause. So, I accept the help where I can get it.

You said:

It sounds very much like what you are accusing early SDA’s and conservitive Christians of doing. They were justifying their sins. You seem to pick up on this when it is done you to, but not when you do it to others.

In response:

In what instances, do you mean, am I doing this?

You said:

I would love to discuss whether you would use this same reasoning when Sunday worship is made law of the land here in America. Will that still be on the bottom of the totem pole for people such as yourself and Trevor, that it will be considered a minor issue?

In response:

I can’t address such hypotheticals.

You said:

I assume your comment about denouncing my American citizenship was done tongue-in-cheek.

In response:

I didn’t do it tongue-in-cheek, at all: I was completely serious.

You said, “Just because you have been done wrong in so many ways does not give a SDA minister or any SDA member the biblical right to join earthly groups who trample God’s laws.”

The United States of America is an earthly group that has trampled God’s laws. They’ve certainly done it more than Black Lives Matter.

So I asked you the obvious question: What are your plans to give up your American citizenship, which joins you to that group?

You said:

As you well know that a person does not choose the country they are born in, just like you didn’t choose to be born black and I didn’t choose to be born white.

In response:

This is not a sensible response.

A citizenship is a political designation, like being a Republican, or a Nazi. It’s not comparable to the biological markers of being Black, white, or a leopard. You were born here, but could be a citizen anywhere.

You said:

There is only one perfect country and I’m plannng on moving there when Jesus takes us home.

In response:

O.K.

You said:

I also would love to find out why you and ghost writer can be part of the SDA church with all the terrible racist people that started and still control this church.

In response:

I dunno…the patience of the saints?

You said:

There’s one last thing that I would love to discuss with you. At some point, don’t we all have to take some blame for our directions in life?

In response:

Yes, certainly, to some greater or lesser degree, depending on the circumstances.

You said:

So far, you seem to suggest that white supremacy dominates everything.

In response:

It dominates relations between people throughout the known universe.

You said:

It would be interesting to hear how you think Obama got 47% of the white vote, if America’s all about white supremacy.

In response:

They needed a president, and he seemed like he’d do the best job.

You said:

I will have these conversations because I do care about fairness and equality to all people. I believe as SDA’s can’t come together if we don’t have these kind of candid discussions.

In response:

If so, then why don’t you have them on 3ABN?

HA


(Nic Samojluk) #41

Aren’t you aware that the book is given to everybody free of charge? I ordered ten of them, then ordered 100, distributed them and ordered another 100. All free, except for the shipping fee. The shipping of 100 copies cost me only $18.50 dollars.

I thank God for the publication of this book, because while the entire liberal Adventist media will not deal with the abortion topic, Shelton is the first well known Adventist who has spoken against the genocide of the unborn in the present century.

This is a topic that needs to be talked about. The blood of all those killed inside Adventist medical facilities is claiming for justice, and sooner or later God will punish those responsible for the crime of abortion.

The guidelines on abortion are a relic of the greatest departure from the biblical truth. Those guidelines were designed to void and replace God’s Sixth Commandment with human tradition and philosophical reasoning.

Said guidelines represent one of the most deceptive documents I have ever read. They attempt to please both pro-lifers and those who embraced elective abortion back in 1970 when Neal Wilson, the NAD president, announced that the Adventist church was leaning towards abortion because there was too much hunger and too many people in the world.

Since then, we Adventists have been keeping–like Catholics–only Nine of God’s Commandments. We need to repent of this great sin against the Creator!


(Danny Shelton) #42

Harry, I’ve enjoyed talking to you on this site. I have gone through your last comments and have answers and questions that I will email to you personally.
There is one thing that Trevor, the ghost writer, and you have left out of all of your comments. I see or hear no love or compassion for all the white people who have historically treated black people so terribly.
Jesus commands us to love one another. It seems that you both have a hatred for leaders, present and past in the SDA church and in our government.
Your statement “After the devil, himself, the number one foe of the Black male is the system of white supremacy. I consider it the chief form of sin on the planet. The other ills Black people face are mere sniffles, compared to the cancer of racism.” This train of thought is why you categorize abortion and same-sex marriage, which both are an abomination to God, as “mere sniffles”. If appears your hatred for white supremacy has blinded your theology as SDA church members.
I won’t bother to quote a lot of Ellen White and the Bible to a seminary professor and a SDA journalist. You have to know better than me,that we as Christians, have to love those who persecute us. You don’t seem to have Love for white people. I will leave you with this scripture: Matt: 5:44 “But I say unto you, Love your enemies, and bless them that despite fully use you, and persecute you”.
In 1979 I experienced racism while playing in a one on one basketball tournament. It was a double elimination tournament. The Black students organized the tournament. The were in charge. There was only about 4 white boys in the tournaments that I can remember. I played in the 6’0 and under. Night after night I played one black player after another without even one loss. There were several games going on at one time in the big gym there at Andrews. The more I won, the bigger the crowds of mostly young black students came to watch me. There were wanting me to get beat as I would hear them calling me numerous names including racial slurs. Cracker, white trash, polar bear etc. They would cheer every time my opponent made a basket and “boo” at me every time I made a basket.
The final day of the playoff I was scheduled to play for 1st or 2nd place. The 1st place trophy must have been 3’ tall! The problem for all the racist who were cheering for me to lose was this, since it was double elimination, ( I had not even lost one game yet) The person I was playing would have to beat me twice. I would only have to beat him once to win first place, as he had already been beaten. To make matters worse, the organizers of the tournament knew that I had given him his only defeat! It didn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that I was probably going to win the first place trophy in a tournament dominated by black players.
When I showed up a the gym to play for first place there was a large sign on the entrance doors. It read,
TOURNAMENT CANCELED! I had several choices to make. I could go the school authorities, or go to the local TV and news media. OR, I could do nothing and let God deal with those people. And that is what I chose to do.
Let’s jump forward 20 plus years later to approximately to the year 2,000. A man came from Andrews to do a program on 3ABN. While talking in my office he started talking about all the racism that still exists in the SDA church. I told him that sometimes racism can work two ways. He explained to me that racism can’t work two ways because white people are in charge and believe they are superior to blacks, therefore they tend to oppress people of color.
I looked up the term racism in the dictionary and this is what I found. “Racism is the belief in the superiority of one race over another, which often results in discrimination and prejudice towards people based on their race or ethnicity.”
I thought I would put racism to the test and see if I had experienced at racism at Andrews in 1979. When it comes to basketball, I’ve yet to talk to a black man who believes that whites are as athletic as blacks. I’m sure you are familiar with terms like “white people can’t jump” etc. OK, I think we can agree so far that what happened to me is starting to smell like racism. Test number two. Almost every black person watching my games was prejudice against me because I was white, and the belief by many blacks that a white person should not win a one on one tournament against dozens of superior black competitors, told me that my hunch had turned into a reality.
Lastly I’m told by my black friends and black wife that racism is different than prejudice because when racism is present the racist group controls the plight of the oppressed ethnic group or individual.
So I put that to the test also. This time it wreaked of racism. Why? Because even though I had paid an entrance fee to be in the tournament, I did not get my money back when the tournament canceled. And, I did not get my first or second place trophy! I would have at least gotten 2nd place in this tournament, which still would have brought me home a nice size trophy.
Before you try to tell me this was not a racist act against me by those in control, because I’m white… Let me ask you a question. If everything I told you was reversed and the black player got called racist names and was cheated out of winning first place against an almost all white group of players…would you call it racism? I know your answer would be a resounding “YES”.
By now you may be doubting my story as did the man who came from Andrews to do a program with me. He decided to go back to Andrews and check out my story. I told him to talk to Karen Thomas as she was a black student who watched nearly all of my undefeated games. Twenty years later I hired her hunsband Samuel Thomas to be a Pastor here at 3ABN. After I met Karen, she told me about how badly she had felt that I was cheated out of winning the tournament back in 1979. She knew a number of those in charge. She told me they were not going to let a white boy win. She also sent this man from Andrews to talk to some teachers who actually had played in the 1979 tournament. They confirmed her story. During Black history month that year I got a call from Andrews asking me to attend as they wanted to make right their wrongs back in 1979. They said they had bought a large trophy and wanted me to come and accept it in front of the student body.
Harry, you may not understand this, but I turned down the offer to go to Andrews and receive my trophy 20 plus years later. Why? Because I had forgiven those involved. Most of the student body had not even been born yet in 1979. I had to let the past go so that it didn’t take over my spirituality causing me to lose focus on what God had called me to do with my life.
One last thing. For many years NAPS, a wonderful group of young people from Oakwood come to 3ABN to do programs. I still play basketball with them. A few years ago they gave me a plaque to put on my wall. Here’s what it says in part, “Because of your unusual athetic ability we name you an “honorary Negro man”! I love it!!


(DENNIS HOFER) #43

No, I’m sorry, I did not realize that the book was ‘free’.
I now see that Danny has plenty of money to spend, already.

Are you also thankful for Danny Shelton’s ‘Free’ (?) publication of this music video, which he claimed on 3ABN Night Light LIVE at ASI in 2014, to be sending to American military bases dedicated to adult ‘abortion’ and ‘genocide’ ?

John 18:36 NKJV
Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, My servants would fight, so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here.”

The Great Advent Movement began in 1844 in celebration of the Great Day (era) of At-One-Ment, NOT with ‘America’ on Earth, but with the God of the rest of ‘Heaven’ ( ‘the Kingdom of Heaven’ ) . . . so shouldn’t Danny be forsaking that ‘Image to the Beast’ that finally brings about ‘Sunday Laws’ in America, that enables the ‘abortions’ of whole families worldwide in the name of American Corporate ‘freedom’ . . . and, instead be singing – as an SDA – ‘Kingdom of Heaven, We Are One’ ?

If you or Danny would like to kill me, I’m sure that God will forgive you because I’m just an ugly, wasted old man – and that makes killing me ‘defensible’ – but don’t touch that cute, but invisible, little fresh fetus ?
Such ‘rightness’, such ‘justice’, is truly blind !

During the Civil War in America, I’ve heard that the new SDA Church paid the fines so its members did not have to fight. When did Danny Shelton’s military fervor become fashionable in the SDA church ?


(Steve Mga) #45

WHY does Yvonne NOT USE her married name???


(DENNIS HOFER) #46

Perhaps for the same reason Linda Shelton still does.
http://www.lindashelton.org/


#47

Danny, you may not be aware that Spectrum has an access-by-permission-only “Lounge” where this article, and your personal-but-unavoidably-public life, are also being discussed.

@webEd - I hope Danny Shelton will be given access to the Lounge so that he can read and participate in the discussion about him there, if he so chooses.

Danny, I’m sure people here will help you navigate the site if you choose to, and Spectrum gives you access.

All the best.


(Harry Allen) #48

Thanks, @DannyS.

You said:

Harry, I’ve enjoyed talking to you on this site. I have gone through your last comments and have answers and questions that I will email to you personally.

In response:

I think you’re saying, Danny, that this will be your last response to me on this thread. If so, then this will be my last to you, here, also.

I’ve appreciated the opportunity to correspond with you, also, and will reach out to you at your email address.

Even more, though, I expect that I’ll be working with you on 3ABN programming that can advance more of these candid discussions.

You said:

There is one thing that Trevor, the ghost writer, and you have left out of all of your comments. I see or hear no love or compassion for all the white people who have historically treated black people so terribly.
Jesus commands us to love one another. It seems that you both have a hatred for leaders, present and past in the SDA church and in our government.

In response:

I take the commands of Christ as authoritative. Because of this, I can’t hate anyone, and don’t. I don’t even consider hatred a productive use of energy.

I think what’s happening here is that, because what I say may seem direct and undiluted, or even impolite, it feels like hatred, especially if these are not sentiments one usually hears, especially from Black people.

As I often say, white people shouldn’t necessarily think that what they normally hear from Black people about race is what Black people really feel. This is especially true if what we really feel could be received, by white people, as disagreeable. Most Black people, I’ve found, will just, instead, avoid the topic, as opposed to telling white people what they really feel about race.

Think of me, then, like you would a person lancing a wound on your leg, deep in the Amazonian jungle. The action would feel excruciating, especially if the infestation is deeply placed, as, I’d argue, racism usually is.

Because of this, as the lancing took place, it would be very easy to imagine that the person doing this actually hates you. That’s because of the aggression with which he’d attack the infestation, and the pain he’d cause, as a result. However, if he does not lance deeply, and painfully, the infestation will not come out.

He could just dig in a little bit, and leave most of the infestation there. Or, he could just chop off your leg at the knee, and say, “Why bother saving this guy?”

The compassion is in the action, itself. You should see any person who is unwilling to lie to you as essentially compassionate.

You said:

Your statement “After the devil, himself, the number one foe of the Black male is the system of white supremacy. I consider it the chief form of sin on the planet. The other ills Black people face are mere sniffles, compared to the cancer of racism.” This train of thought is why you categorize abortion and same-sex marriage, which both are an abomination to God, as “mere sniffles”. If appears your hatred for white supremacy has blinded your theology as SDA church members.

In response:

I said, after the devil, himself, the number one foe of the Black male is the system of white supremacy.

In other words:

a) As opposed to what you said, “black-on-black violence” is not the number one foe of Black people;

b) To the degree that abortion and same-sex marriage afflict Black people, they do so within the power circumference of white supremacy; and

c) White supremacy is satanic.

Now, with what part of this does SDA theology disagree, and why?

You said:

I won’t bother to quote a lot of Ellen White and the Bible to a seminary professor and a SDA journalist. You have to know better than me,that we as Christians, have to love those who persecute us. You don’t seem to have Love for white people. I will leave you with this scripture: Matt: 5:44 “But I say unto you, Love your enemies, and bless them that despite fully use you, and persecute you”.

In response:

See above.

You said:

In 1979 I experienced racism while playing in a one on one basketball tournament. It was a double elimination tournament. The Black students organized the tournament. The were in charge. There was only about 4 white boys in the tournaments that I can remember. I played in the 6’0 and under. Night after night I played one black player after another without even one loss. There were several games going on at one time in the big gym there at Andrews. The more I won, the bigger the crowds of mostly young black students came to watch me. There were wanting me to get beat as I would hear them calling me numerous names including racial slurs. Cracker, white trash, polar bear etc. They would cheer every time my opponent made a basket and “boo” at me every time I made a basket.
The final day of the playoff I was scheduled to play for 1st or 2nd place. The 1st place trophy must have been 3’ tall! The problem for all the racist who were cheering for me to lose was this, since it was double elimination, ( I had not even lost one game yet) The person I was playing would have to beat me twice. I would only have to beat him once to win first place, as he had already been beaten. To make matters worse, the organizers of the tournament knew that I had given him his only defeat! It didn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that I was probably going to win the first place trophy in a tournament dominated by black players.
When I showed up a the gym to play for first place there was a large sign on the entrance doors. It read,
TOURNAMENT CANCELED! I had several choices to make. I could go the school authorities, or go to the local TV and news media. OR, I could do nothing and let God deal with those people. And that is what I chose to do.

In response:

I appreciate you sharing this event from your past.

This wasn’t an instance of racism, Danny.

Rather than explain, here, why I’m saying this, let me refer you to an essay I wrote on this subject, several years ago.

The piece is called, “Why Can’t Black People Be Racist?”: A Brief Primer on White Supremacy.” Please read it, and read the comments below it, too.

Then, please consider this my reply to your story, above.

You said:

Let’s jump forward 20 plus years later to approximately to the year 2,000. A man came from Andrews to do a program on 3ABN. While talking in my office he started talking about all the racism that still exists in the SDA church. I told him that sometimes racism can work two ways. He explained to me that racism can’t work two ways because white people are in charge and believe they are superior to blacks, therefore they tend to oppress people of color.

In response:

I wouldn’t have put it in those words. However, the man is correct.

I would have said, “Racism can’t work two ways, because racism is white supremacy, and the first requirement for being a white supremacist is that you be white.”

Or, I might have said, “When you think about it, a system of polar oppression that can work in two ways would immediately become incoherent, and, thus, impossible to practice.”

It’d be like having a Fourth of July tug-of-war where, right before dropping the handkerchief, the judge said, “By the way: All of you are allowed to push or pull.”

You said:

I looked up the term racism in the dictionary and this is what I found. “Racism is the belief in the superiority of one race over another, which often results in discrimination and prejudice towards people based on their race or ethnicity.”

In response:

That sounds like a definition created by white people, for white people. That definition is possibly 500-plus years out-of-date.

Only white people would describe racism weightlessly; as “a belief.” No Black person, who goes through race, not only moment-by-moment, but in their dreams, would define racism so ethereally.

Racism may have once been a belief. But at some point, white people went about the effective business of making it a reality.

You said:

I thought I would put racism to the test and see if I had experienced at racism at Andrews in 1979. When it comes to basketball, I’ve yet to talk to a black man who believes that whites are as athletic as blacks. I’m sure you are familiar with terms like “white people can’t jump” etc. OK, I think we can agree so far that what happened to me is starting to smell like racism.

In response:

I’m not sure what you’re arguing.

I’m a Black male who believes that white people are as athletic as Black people, or can be.

I’m not clear how this shows racism is not real, or not dominant.

You said:

Test number two. Almost every black person watching my games was prejudice against me because I was white, and the belief by many blacks that a white person should not win a one on one tournament against dozens of superior black competitors, told me that my hunch had turned into a reality.

In response:

  1. You can’t credibly speak about the mental states of observers, or anyone else, Danny, except yourself.

  2. Indeed, the organizers may have cancelled the tournament because they didn’t want to give a white guy a trophy.

But, if so, that’s not racism. It’s actually a response to racism.

You said:

Lastly I’m told by my black friends and black wife that racism is different than prejudice because when racism is present the racist group controls the plight of the oppressed ethnic group or individual.

In response:

I wouldn’t have put it in those words. However, I think your “Black friends” and “Black wife” are correct.

I would have said, “Racism is different from prejudice, because racism is white supremacy.”

Then, I would have said something similar to what I said here:

http://bit.ly/2mBkOCJ

but especially similar to what I said to Lacy Elizabeth Lizarraga, here. (Particularly note the part about “NABISCO”):

http://bit.ly/2A9HYGb

Or, let me put it another way:

Prejudice is one thing.

Racism is prejudice coupled to a Wärtsilä 14RT-flex96C diesel engine.

You said:

So I put that to the test also. This time it wreaked of racism. Why? Because even though I had paid an entrance fee to be in the tournament, I did not get my money back when the tournament canceled. And, I did not get my first or second place trophy! I would have at least gotten 2nd place in this tournament, which still would have brought me home a nice size trophy.

In response:

Racism doesn’t mean Black people denied you a basketball trophy, Danny. It’s not a good example.

A good example of racism is that, because you’re white, it’s likely you could have resolved these difficulties with greater ease than the hypothetical Black player you described, below, could have done.

You said:

Before you try to tell me this was not a racist act against me by those in control, because I’m white… Let me ask you a question. If everything I told you was reversed and the black player got called racist names and was cheated out of winning first place against an almost all white group of players…would you call it racism? I know your answer would be a resounding “YES”.

In response:

I would call it racism, not resoundingly, but obviously.

I would do that, because, if we just think about it, objectively, stories about the following topic:

“Black people being cheated out of something valuable”—land, wages, ideas, children, history, time, knowledge, lives, family, hope, a future, etc.—“by hostile white people, who do so without penalty”

are common in the history of racism. The above subject describes gargantuan portions of the interactions white and non-white people have had during the history of race. Every SDA regional conference owes its origin to such a story. Indeed, if you deleted every narrative with this theme, the story of Black and white people would simply disintegrate.

The reverse is not true. In other words, for example, there aren’t sites around the nation, to which you can go and see the places where Black people lynched white people.

Take a look at this short video, by comedian Aamer Rahman, when you get a chance:

You said:

By now you may be doubting my story as did the man who came from Andrews to do a program with me. He decided to go back to Andrews and check out my story. I told him to talk to Karen Thomas as she was a black student who watched nearly all of my undefeated games. Twenty years later I hired her hunsband Samuel Thomas to be a Pastor here at 3ABN. After I met Karen, she told me about how badly she had felt that I was cheated out of winning the tournament back in 1979. She knew a number of those in charge. She told me they were not going to let a white boy win. She also sent this man from Andrews to talk to some teachers who actually had played in the 1979 tournament. They confirmed her story. During Black history month that year I got a call from Andrews asking me to attend as they wanted to make right their wrongs back in 1979. They said they had bought a large trophy and wanted me to come and accept it in front of the student body.

In response:

I’ve never doubted your story.

But thanks for these details about it.

You said:

Harry, you may not understand this, but I turned down the offer to go to Andrews and receive my trophy 20 plus years later. Why? Because I had forgiven those involved. Most of the student body had not even been born yet in 1979. I had to let the past go so that it didn’t take over my spirituality causing me to lose focus on what God had called me to do with my life.

In response:

Danny, another reason, perhaps, you could do that is because, in the end, you did all right for yourself. So, you could be gracious about the loss.

Had the reverse been the case, more than likely, the Black player could have suffered catastrophic life consequences, having been cheated of his glory.

So, after the tournament was canceled, someone could have told his gym teacher, who was putting the Black player’s name forward for a state basketball scholarship, “How are you puttin’ ahead someone who’d humiliate all of our local boys?” So, instead, they give the scholarship to the best white player.

As a result, the Black player doesn’t go to college. As a result, he gets a menial job in town. As a result, he can’t take care of his family. As a result, his wife leaves him. As a result, his family falls apart. As a result, his kids get into drugs and crime. As a result, some of the boys go to jail, while the girls have unstable marriages and home lives. As a result, his mother’s heart is broken. As a result, an opportunistic disease takes over her body. As a result, her son buries her the year she turns 58.

When he gets the call from Andrews, he is going to get there, somehow, even if he has to walk. He’s not going to take the old 3ABN Cessna Citation VII, but he is going to go, because of what that trophy represents: Not just the lost game, but a lost life.

So, when you tell me that story, it’s just a longer way of saying that what you experienced was certainly not racism. Because, if what happened to you is “racism,” then we have to find an entirely different vocabulary to describe what Black people continuously go through and experience.

You said:

One last thing. For many years NAPS, a wonderful group of young people from Oakwood come to 3ABN to do programs. I still play basketball with them. A few years ago they gave me a plaque to put on my wall. Here’s what it says in part, “Because of your unusual athetic ability we name you an “honorary Negro man”! I love it!!

In response:

Thanks for sharing that, Danny.

I do not love it. I don’t even like it.

Besides hoping that they did not misspell “athletic,” as you have, :slight_smile: and besides the fact that, since 1968, almost no Black person has used the term “Negro” to describe African-Americans—except when doing so with deep irony—the statement seems to equate being Black with being unusually athletic.

This is a common, racist, white reduction. It’s not really different from saying, “because you like fried chicken so much…,” “because you play saxophone so well and are an incredible rapper…” or, “because you have such a huge penis….”

I trust that, since then, these young people have come to a deeper understanding of what being Black means. I expect they have. Life has a frighteningly bracing way of doing this.

To me, if you’re a white person, and you want to be an “honorary Negro man,” then you must eliminate the system of white supremacy (racism). You must do so, without seeking thanks, attention, or praise.

Doing so, if you’re a white person, is the only thing that qualifies you to be “an honorary Negro.” Doing so, if you’re a white person, is the only thing that qualifies you to be “friend,” a “champion,” or even a “husband,” of, or to, Black people or persons.

From my perspective, anything else is slumming. Anything else is just merely letting people languish in misery, while you soberly observe. Anything else is failing to engage with what is, ultimately, a crisis.

HA


(Danny Shelton) #49

Harry, Thanks for getting my email address. I’ll send you my more lengthy answers to your last post privately.
I’m glad that you understand the process of loving someone enough to do surgery on them to get out all of the infection and infestation. Had I as a white person brought it up to you, it may have been taken as very demeaning. It is my intention to talk frankly to you, not to win an argument, but to explore what we may do to rightly represent the character of God.
Most white people have the same problem as you have described that many blacks have… they tend to shy away from real candid discussions.
It seems we are both willing to “put it out there” to hopefully get some solutions that can improve the relationship between blacks and whites, especially in the church. Unless we are in one accord as SDA Christians, it will be hard for those we are trying to reach, to understand the true character of God. God is love.


(Danny Shelton) #50

Thank you very much Cassie.