It seems to me that this is a systemic issue. Adventism has implicit and explicit racial attitudes that are rooted in its history, its belief system and its organizational structure.
A lot of intergenerational trauma has accumulated over the decades, and I’m not sure talk, however well-intentioned, will heal this. This kind of stress becomes part of peoples’ physiology, and impacts choices over generations.
Has Adventism ever been willing to face the fact that it harms people?
Until this is seen as something deeper than behavior problems that need to be controlled, the tensions will keep accumulating and come out in explosions because the feelings were never validated, the attitudes were never faced, the 19th century writings cannot be questioned, and responsibility for the damage done therefore cannot ever be taken.
Where are the academics in Adventism specializing in healing transgenerational trauma caused by racist institutions and attitudes?
Perhaps Spectrum could run some articles by scholars on what is known about transgenerational racial trauma, and talk about what could be done at the grassroots levels to facilitate unraveling and healing this legacy of racism.
This critical situation requires more than goodwill, it also requires knowledge and skills, it seems to me. Surely the Adventist church has academic resources that could be brought to bear.
I understand “tired.” But it’s more than “tired,” it’s ongoing traumatic damage in the face of indifference. You wouldn’t be talking about it in your churches if it weren’t real and ongoing. I’m sure there are stories.
Canada seems to be trying to address the cumulative trauma of racism on First Nations peoples.
ABORIGINAL EXPERIENCES WITH RACISM AND ITS IMPACTS
Racism must be understood as something that is lived; it is experienced,
by individuals, families, communities, and nations through interactions and
structures of the everyday world.
The truth is that the ideologies, social prejudices and words upon which race and racism are built do a great deal of damage.
In fact, racism infects the lives of individuals and institutions – sometimes quietly, sometimes covertly, sometimes immediately, and sometimes over long periods of time, but always unjustly.
Canada’s First Nations: A Legacy of Institutional Racism
Intergenerational Trauma: Convergence of Multiple Processes among First Nations
peoples in Canada
Stressful events may have immediate effects on well-being, and by influencing appraisal
processes, coping methods, life styles, parental behaviours, as well as behavioural and neuronal
reactivity, may also have long lasting repercussions on physical and psychological health.
In addition, through these and similar processes, traumatic experiences may have adverse
Given the lengthy and traumatic history of stressors experienced by Aboriginal peoples, it might be expected that such intergenerational effects may be particularly notable.
In the present review we outline some of the behavioural disturbances associated with stressful/traumatic experiences (e.g., depression, anxiety, posttraumatic stress disorder, and substance abuse disorder), and describe the influence of several variables (age, sex, early life or other experiences, appraisals, coping strategies, as well as stressor chronicity, controllability, predictability and ambiguity) on vulnerability to pathology.
Moreover, we suggest that trauma may dispose individuals to further stressors, and increase the response to these stressors.
It is further argued that the shared collective experiences of trauma experienced
by First Nations peoples, coupled with related collective memories, and persistent sociocultural
disadvantages, have acted to increase vulnerability to the transmission and expression of
intergenerational trauma effects.
I pray this will happen. The issues are so deeply entrenched, it will be chaotic for awhile, if people try, I imagine.
All the best.