1) This strikes me as an article that you have wanted to write for a long time; not for weeks or months, but for years, or, depending on your age, maybe decades.
Is this so?
2) When I first saw your title—“What if Jesus was Black?”—I wasn’t sure how you were phrasing it; i.e.:
“Let’s imagine that Jesus was Black”
“How possible is it, historically, that Jesus was Black?”
It’s clear to me that you are exploring the question in the former sense. However, it seems that, at least in part, your friend may have been addressing it in the latter one.
I say that, partly, because his white(?) interlocutors appear to be responding in terms of his query’s negation: No, Jesus could not have looked like the late Nick Ashford, of songwriting duo Ashford & Simpson:
The reason why this is intriguing, first of all, is that it leaves a tremendous amount open to conjecture. For example, what, exactly, are “White people who one may not classify as racist”? That is, what do such people say, think, and do?
Though I suspect I have an idea of what you mean by this categorization, different people have varied notions of what such people would be like. Reasonable ones might even ask, for example, would such persons, possessing “a definitive mindset that is curated from seeing your own image reflected everywhere,” be racist by definition?
That is, amidst a multi-hued species, what kind of people are engendered if the smallest subset—the white ones—see their own image reflected everywhere – including in the face of God?
Which brings me back to your question, via a hypothesis that you, surprisingly, did not explore:
4)If Jesus had been Black, Christianity would have never taken off, because the next global power set—white people—would have treated it much the way they do other symbols of Black power and fortitude: With relative neglect and disdain.
That is, Jesus may have been Black: More than one African-American comic has noted that, to use your example, God would have never directed baby Jared Leto and his parents to hide in Egypt, given the difficulty they would have had blending in.
But, even if He was Black, ultimately, He would become white, because white people would need a white god, in order to make white supremacy coherent.
So, rhetorically, mind you, I ask what is the rationale for Black people needing to make god Black? And how is it you are qualified to make such a sweeping judgment-about white people, a people you can’t understand because you are not white? After all, you Black people say we white people cannot pretend to understand the Black person-because we are apparently “not black enough”
Some coherence is requisite, here, too.
Harry, despite your disdain and derision, ad hominems, and stereotyping people based on their melanin content, reading your screed does have some purpose. And counter to your recent opining that I lack of reading comprehension, I suspect you really meant that I read too well. Between, behind, and beyond just the superficial face value of your words. I truly believe you do not know what you mean when you say these sort of things. But carry on.
OK. If you don’t like the word “freedom”, let’s get more specific; individual rights of thought, action, and property. Capitalism lives where individual rights are respected. Tyranny rules when the use of force is used to usurp those rights, whether by individuals or by governments.
Capitalism “allows” a person to follow his judgment. It does not force. It is a system which allows a person to be acquisitive or charitable, as he sees fit. A Christian who wishes to maintain a view of love as the highest value may do so. He may feel obligated to do so. He cannot obligate others to follow his beliefs. Freedom to choose allows one to follow his moral dictates.
In my experience, most don’t, and, as racial victims, merely go along with white images and concepts.
Some do do this, as you surmise. They do it as a corrective; either a psychological and/or historical one.
So, as an example: At Christmas, a Black female or male may buy their child a Black Barbie®, as a way of psychologically counteracting the deluge of white images their child will expectedly suffer under, during a lifelong tenure by white supremacy:
In my experience, this is very common, though not common enough: Black people adopt Black versions of common white symbols, in order to counteract, or even repel, white ones. One might even interpret, for example, the frequent call for “more positive Black images” in motion pictures and television, this way:
Or, additionally, Black people may do so as a historical corrective. As I suggest, and as does, more firmly, a separate Spectrum essay on this site, Christ may have, in fact, been Black, or at least dark-skinned. So, some of those who embrace such an idea do so to correct a history they deem false.
I understand white people from the position that a victim of white supremacy, which I am, would.
I don’t think I know what it’s like to be white; that is, I can’t verifiably say, or prove, that I do…or prove that I do not.
But, as I’ve said to @Arkdrey, @ajshep, and others, I’m not talking about how white people think, even if it appears that I am. I’m talking about how white people function.
I think that those Black people who do say such things are, essentially, surmising what writer James Baldwin said, of white people, collectively: “You never had to look at me. I had to look at you. I know more about you than you know about me.”
In other words, as in any abusive relationship, those victimized need to learn the nuances of the abuser’s behavior, because their lives depend on being able to read his intentions. Meanwhile, the abuser need not know anything about those he abuses, because, to him, they are just things.
I talk about white behavior, generally, as an expression of the white supremacy system.
I do this, based on lifelong observation, and a reasonably acute ability to synthesize data.
I do it so well that, when I share my observations with Black people, anywhere in the world, as I have, they, at the very least, listen closely. Sometimes they nod. Sometimes they smile. Sometimes they laugh. Sometimes they applaud. These indicate the familiarity of a common experience.
In other words, if you think I’m making all this up, print out all of our exchanges, including the one you’re reading right now.
Bind a dozen, or two dozen, copies, and give them to Black people you know, or even ones that you don’t.
Let them read all of what we’ve said to each other. Let them do this for, say, two or three months.
Then, ask them for their opinions; i.e., ask them to what they most related.
Of course, you won’t do this.
Sometimes, even, if they are feeling generous, white people experience this self-recognition, too. Several years ago, I gave a lecture in Australia, featuring a racial analysis of Australian TV content. My white listeners vocally affirmed and nodded in agreement with what I was saying. Then, I admitted to them that I’d never seen a minute of Australian TV in my entire life.
What they didn’t get a chance to ask me, or me to tell them, was how I could get on a plane, fly 11,000 miles, and tell them what they see on TV, as though I’d been looking through their living room windows.
I’m confident none of this means anything to you. You have a framework of what you consider real, and this is not it. I understand that.
But because you’re a reasonable person, you might agree that “disdain and derision, ad hominems, and stereotyping” would not be enough for me to do what I’ve just described, if you are, as well, observant.
Don’t get me wrong: You minimizing the things I say, as “disdain and derision, ad hominems, and stereotyping,” fits my model; it’s a classic expression of fragility. It’s not new. It’s not even old; it’s kinda ancient. But I’m encouraging you to step a little higher.
Well, one man’s screed is another man’s canon.
No, you misunderstand me: It’s not your reading that bothers me. It’s your writing. It’s typically ultra-pretentious.
And you don’t have to do that because, as this current post, above, demonstrates, you can write quite well. Here, you’re being clear, concise, even a little dry. If you continue this, I’d consider it progress.
I still think you have no empathy for the Black imagination; i.e., what Black people see as they interact with white people. But this is to be expected. It takes time, especially when you’re dealing with someone who describes that viewpoint the way I do.
That is, usually, the way Black people talk to white people is to assuage them; to let 'em know it’s going to be O.K., as it pertains to racial matters.
Now, I believe that this is a “slavery holdover,” but, even more, I believe it’s untrue. So, why would I waste your, and my, valuable time with anything but utter clarity?
You keep talking about “the secret behind what I mean” as though it was the MCU Phase 7-9 timeline.
Ponder, momentarily, that you’re not credible on what I “know,” or “mean.” These are cognitive processes to which only I have access.
You can “truly believe” whatever you want. However, if you are receiving what I say a certain way, you can always ask me if I mean X. I will always tell you the truth.
Of course, anything my words mean to you, they mean to you. Absolutely. They just may not mean that to me.
Back at you Harry.
Your meaning is clear-you seem to position yourself as knowing what I-and apparently all white people-think and know.
I do not expect you to apprehend that irony. And the icing on the cake is your “ultra-pretentious” comment. Ah the hubris overwhelms me. (edit to add) Just saying, I learned a long time ago how quixotic a task if I expect anonymous posters on this here interweb respond to my superior perspectives on their tone and style. Good luck with that.
Again, you’re saying so much more than you dare to honestly admit.
Individual rights are respected in many countries where social democracy is practiced, in different forms than American democracy and capitalism. To cast a picture of free market capitalism hand in hand with individual freedoms as opposed to tyranny as the alternative is a false binary. The picture isn’t so black and white.
I agree with your assessment. I agree that this is how capitalism runs.
But, when we speak of a biblical evaluation, that is only half the picture. The biblical view would also take into account how effectively people are taken care of within such a system, beyond leaving it up to how individuals choose or don’t choose to take care of others within it.
The OT economy knew nothing of unbridled free market capitalism. The Torah encoded care for the orphans and widows, mandated the restoration and the return of lands and goods to the disenfranchised in the jubilee years, and prescribed landowners to leave the corners of their fields unharvested, all among various directions that were designed for the sake of the poor. This indicates a systemic way of organizing society and its economy with a systematic care for the have nots and the least of these. This was considered wisdom, a wise way of running things. The fact that Israel did not put these things consistently into practice, neglected the poor, and took advantage of the weak, is what incurred YHWH’s judgement upon them throughout the OT period.
This can help shape our evaluation of the effectiveness of any societal/economic system today. Such evaluation is not just based on the freedom left for individual beneficence. It is based on how effectively a society mitigates inequities, cares for and empowers its weakest members, and brings justice to the marginalized and poor.
Unfettered capitalism has a miserable record in light of such criteria. The banking crisis of 1873 in the U.S. led to people starving to death because of no social safety net. The gilded age produced child labor and sweat shops while people like Rockefeller amassed fortunes beyond comprehension. Rockefeller’s estimated wealth in today’s dollars would have been $336,000,000,000. The expansion that created a robust middle class after WWll was relatively short lived. While CEOS made 20x middle management workers during that period, the disparity of earnings has swelled to 400x today. All while 50%of our population has little to no access to quality health care, higher education costs and loan debt spiral out of control, etc. And this is now in a system that is regulated.
Individual beneficence and the freedom to help has never and can never make up for these horrible, systemic inequities. Other developed nations operate under far more equitable systems, with no discernible losses of freedom. Taxes in places like Denmark or Canada may be more, but many look at it as the necessary cost of providing necessary rights and services to as many people as possible within society.
I believe all these factors need to be taken into account when evaluating the effectiveness and even moral base of any economic system… not just the provision of individual freedom to give or to hoard.
OK. If you don’t like the word “freedom”, let’s get more specific; individual rights of thought, action, and property. Capitalism lives where individual rights are respected. Tyranny rules when the use of force is used to usurp those rights, whether by individuals or by governments.
Thanks for the reply, your answer shows you have somewhat of a grasp of this issue and a desire to defend it.
First of all I didn’t say I didn’t like the word “freedom”. I used the word “wonder”.
I really only have questions. Would you take some time to answer some of them?
It is said 3 people own as much wealth as the lower half of the population, how do capitalists answer for the huge difference in wealth between haves and have nots?
Does everyone have the same “freedom” or “individual rights” under this system?
Are there any limits to this freedom? If so what?
Where do your individual rights end and mine begin?
What do we do about workers dispossessed by changes in technology?
What is your take on Theodore Roosevelt’s trust busting activity of a century ago?
Do governments have the right to regulate and adjust economic activity? If so, how and when?
What should happen when individual rights are not respected?
How do you protect the individual rights of the consumer if big companies begin taking unfair advantage of their “opportunities”?
Where do ideas come from?
I’m not sure I have any answers and It’s not my intent to poke holes in your beliefs. All I do have is decades of observation and a layman’s reading of history
Courtney Ray, thank you for this provoking paper I widely agree.
The “race” : I assume that Christ was a Jew of his time ad place , no “Scandinavian” white, hair and skin dark brownish, dark colored hair and beard. - We should be aware of how we transformed the Saviour into the pale, longhaired softie - let us compare with early depictions (“Christos Pantocrkrator”, cupola Hosisos Loukas, Greece) - -but let uns remind the Second comandment and question the influence of 1th century illustrators to distort our imagination of the Man on the cross.
Western religion : I take the old and the recent hymnals . And compare : Thre natives of somewhere in the Southern hemisphere sing - a mens terzetto ! : “I walked in the Garden alone -” "Lift up the trumpet and loud let it ring - - " well I enforce my littele chrurch to accept weekly psalm presentations , just 5 minutes. They mostly and highly esteem Psalms are of Mendellsohn - Bartholdy., early 19. Century. - - And I have such peaces (secretly, at home ! ) like Missa Bassa, Missa Cameroun, Psalmodiae Bassae - yes and the “Melodians” - not Boney M ! - in original Reggae sound : "By the Rivers of Babylon - " ,; Yet our minster frwoned about Joerg Douda , born 1968 and out of the tradition of Dresdner Kreuzchor, and his “Friede ueber Israel” (Psalm 122) : “Quite modern !” - The next occasion I confronted him with was Boris Blacher (“Times of War”) And today in reverence to Hiroshima and Dersden a part of Mauerspergers “Dresdner Requiem”, 1989 - 1971, Kantor of the Dresden “Kreuzchor.” - - -Nonono, Mendelssohn !
And generally in music : NO rhythms stimulating bodily movement ! And sing slowly ! ( Horrible to hear Catholics and Adventists ( ! ) sing the “Sanctus” of Schuberts “Deutsche Messe” !. No clasping ! Watch carefully what the littel kids sing ! (“Musik und ich” results of a training week for Childrens SS - teachers in Bogenhofen) : Avoid rhythms ! - Late Congo missionary in the early sixties Hans Fichtberger told me of the Sabbath worship there : The choir marches down the aisle - an endless procession, since they danced ! - And his native believers danced for every special occasion : At the wedding, when a child was born, at baptism ( ! ) - - at the funeral service ( ! )
But maybe local leaders - you know : Leadership ! - , not dressed in their national costumes, but according to the Saville Row dresscode, have stopped this heathen influence inbetween !
Bishiop Kreutler of Austrian orgin, a greatly honored man for hins engagement in problems of the environment of his sheep in the Aazonas jungle wrote about a mass there : The naives in their native dress (a skirt of leaves), the young mothers - topless -breastnursing their babes - -a comunity honoring Christ. I wonder about the music : It surely was not Hadyns “Missa in tempore belli” or his “Organ Solo Mass”.
Patriotism : - Americanism. In Bogenhofen, our local SDA acadmey,some now do not note “Psalm 7, 15.” as in use here since centuries, but "Psalm 7 : 15. Just for instance…
Capitalism : means the possession of the material you need for production . The farmer owns his land and plow. The taylor owns his scissor and sewing untilities.- Everything produced in a greater scale has the landlord and his slaves, so already Abraham . Well. somewhere in the South Sea they have a community owned boat for fishing - - Capitalism only is abused when the owner or the shareholder without contributing more than the production device and without playing an active role in production himself withholds part of the profit out of the production for his very own private luxurious life.(Karl Marx : Surpuls value for the expropriateur).
Any claim, by me, to know what you, and apparently all white people, think and know, can readily and immediately be dismissed. I guarantee this. Only you, God, and the people to whom you tell your thoughts know what you think.
In part, this is why I say that a chief, yet-to-be-disclosed answer is to this question: Why do white people need to practice racism?
By this, I mean more than for obvious, material benefits. I’m talking about the needs that racist practice fills.
It was one of my mentors who said to me, “Even movies without any Black people in them are about white supremacy. The proof is that there aren’t any Black people in them.” In other words, someone made a decision to do that. Why?
And, by this, I don’t mean that someone thought, “Don’t put any Black people in this movie.” I don’t mean that they thought that…or that they didn’t think that.
I mean that a movie is the end result of a series of thoughts, words, and actions, the total outcome of which is "No Black people in this movie." So, how did that happen, and how does it happen repeatedly?
In summary, if you’ve read something by me that seems to suggest I know what any white people think, I don’t. Please kindly put this somewhere where you can see it, so that I don’t have to keep saying it.
I know what white people say and do. I know this by experience.
I only know anyone’s thoughts to the degree that they say or do what they are thinking. That’s why I say, and have said, I’m not talking about how white people think. I’m talking about how white people function.
Perhaps it’s something only you can see, or, like a dog whistle, that only canines can hear.
Thanks for bringing this up.
Yes: Your writing is often ultra-pretentious. Self-important. Ostentatious. These are other words I would use.
I’m not saying that you possess these qualities. I don’t know you.
I’m not saying that this is something with which I would necessarily charge white people, generally.
I’m not saying that this is something I’d lobby at @ajshep. I wouldn’t even say it of @Arkdrey, whose writing I often find difficult to understand, and some of which I’ve charged with being gobbledygook.
Both of these are commentators with whom I typically disagree. But I would not charge either of them with writing in an ultra-pretentious manner.
I’m saying, as just one example among many, that writing like this…
…is a waste of everyone’s time IF your objective is to communicate, as it should be in a forum like this one.
Even stuff like this…
…is clear, but just a bit precious. “I truly believe you do not know” is, again, conjectural and sucking up space. Why not just state what you mean, instead of alluding to it?
If your object is to just express yourself, perhaps you should take a class in writing for self-expression. If the issue is that English is not your first language—you have said this—then take what I, a native speaker, am saying as cautionary, and work to get better.
As I said, the way you composed your previous post, #22, shows that you’re quite capable of writing in a way that is clear, and that conveys an idea compactly. In my opinion, you should keep doing that.
I come here to rip ideas to pieces. I’d like the same done to mine. If I can’t read or understand what you’re saying, it’s like locking a lock, then putting that locked lock inside of a box with a lock, and locking it. What’s the point?
@Timo: Everything I’ve ever said here, on Spectrum’s forums, may be wrong, and probably is incorrect.
Maybe, in fact, by charging you with writing pretentiously, the 2x4 is in my eye. Maybe it is me whose writing is self-important and ostentatious, while yours is straightforward and unadorned.
Maybe, as you charge, my pride, or self-confidence, is excessive, and it is from that place that I critique your words.
All I can say is that others will have to judge which of us is correct, here. I’m not credible on how my writing reads to those who encounter it for the first time. All I can go by is the responses to it that I receive.
So, for example, it’s clear to me that many, of the white people, who read what I write, think I believe that all white people are racists. I know this, because they keep coming back to this, some even claiming I’ve said it, though none of them have been able to provide a quote.
I believe I understand how they come to this conclusion. However, that’s not what I’ve said, or mean to say.
What I mean to say is that the existence of white supremacy makes it very simple, even trivial, for any white person to become a racist. This is my argument. What arises, naturally, from it, if one is so convinced, are the words of a children’s song:
Oh, be careful, little feet, where you go…
In other words, one might be a racist and not even know it. One may have “tripped” into it, so to speak, depending on what one has done, and/or continues to do.
Racism is very much like the common conception of sin, which is why that children’s song works for talking about both. It’s also why I say, as you remember well, I’ll bet, that white supremacy is the chief form of sin.
I think you’re positing, or perhaps imagining, that I feel I possess a superior perspective on your tone and style. I don’t.
I’m someone who has to read your words, but, unlike you, I do so having never thought them. So, I have a perspective on what you write that you cannot acquire, except through me, or others like me.
You’d be a better, more effective writer, in that regard, were you to compose your words with more care, aiming for simplicity. That’s what I’m saying.
You can accept this advice, or you can reject it. I’d like to read what you say, and respond to it. But if you write like you don’t care if I do, then I’ll act in kind.
Again, you seem positively addicted to talking about my thinking. I simply cannot figure out why, when these claims are so easily refuted….
You’re not credible on what I “dare,” or about that on which I’m “honest.” Doing so would require divinity, on your part, as these are cognitive processes, and, thus, inaccessible to other humans.
I don’t think you’re claiming that you’re God. But, if so, let me know, so that, to quote Fatboy Slim, I can praise you like I should.
Thankfully you’re good, then, and sin free-although, unless God adroitly hid this nugget of truth in scripture or White shed further light on it but the white handlers hid it, i suspect you are making it up to support your idea. Saved, ostensibly because you happen to have black skin. Nope, can’t imagine a white-or a black god- suggesting that skin color is salvific.
Although-it’s famously opined that “one drop” of black blood makes a Superior Black Person, I have a question for you. Given that it is unlikely that I do not have at least a drop of black blood (which means I too am partly black), and given that it is quite likely that you have at least one drop of white blood-why does that not function like black blood does and by virtue of that one drop of white blood also make you a white person?
See, there undoubtedly is a space to communicate beyond this banal skin-deep superficiality being fomented by rabid identity politics-but I’ve not met any here in this corner of my faith community. I do however have friends, colleagues, peers, acquaintances (who happen to be more black than I)-and more open to that deeper conversation.
We’ve been deluded into a meaningless fight-.in effect fighting racism with racism.
I’ll continue to pray for you, that you get that promised eye salve -for it is clear you cannot see
(or perhaps, will not).
I’ll add one note in passing-what sort of god do you worship that would create the possibility that a large part of the world will sin the chief sin automatically, even trivially?
You’ve got to, not only, write more carefully, @Timo, but read and respond more carefully.
A better way to handle this would be to simply ask, “Are you good, then, and sin-free?” This would mean that not only do I have to make my original claim, but now I have to respond to your inquiry.
Instead, you’ve posed an easily deflected charge. Here’s the rebound: I said chief form, not only form.
Much as I stated, back on June 22, 2019, at 12:59 am ET, when my first assertion of this point, below, similarly lit up your pen:
… the Bible doesn’t say that all sin involves money, or that all sin is about loving money. It says that all evil has the love of money at its root.
My belief is that white supremacy is the predominant basis for most of the sin that happens in this world; that, at least 51% of it can be traced back, in some way, to the white race system.
It’s a conjecture. A suspicion.
I believe it to be true, but can’t prove it, yet.
It’s a hypothesis.
My skin is a beautiful shade of chocolate brown.
You’re tripping if you think the import of my statement is “suggesting that skin color is salvific.”
I’m saying that white supremacy is widely and wildly underestimated in its effects on corrupting human behavior.
Some people say this of sex. Some say it of liquor. Some say it of gambling.
I say it of racism.
You’ve asked versions of this question before.
The answer is that there is a race system that white people dominate. It is the most effective system of domination yet conceived.
To keep it this way, it is important that white people be able to tell which people are white, and which are not. Otherwise, racism would decohere and collapse.
As a result of this, there is no such thing as a “partly Black” person. Any person who is generally deemed “partly Black” is typically classified, under white supremacy, as non-white.
In a similar way, while I have white ancestry, and many Black people do, “having white ancestry” is not the definition of being white. Whiteness is defined negatively; i.e., “not Black.”
Tell me if I’ve answered your question and, if not, what question you now possess.
What are “rabid identity politics”? I mean this.
Whenever the subject of race is brought up, I keep hearing white people respond by talking about “identity politics.” However, they never define this term.
It reminds me of how, in 2014, @CervvantesEsq said here, on Spectrum:
The race card is a convenient crutch and is much in evidence in the current Administration a la Holder. Each person must be considered on the basis of his work and its results not on ethnicity. Nor should anyone be given a pass because of ethnicity.
In The Grip of Truth
I asked, “What is ‘the race card’”?
@Jude24 replied, “A trump card meant to confer special privilege or deflect guilt.”
So, I said:
Thanks, Jude 24.
I have a standard maxim: Charges made against victims of race are typically better, more accurately, made against the race system, itself.
It’s operative, here, clearly, because, based on the definition you just gave, the system of white supremacy, itself—which creates the Black responses decried here—is The Ultimate Race Card.
I say this, because racism—the sole functional form of which is white supremacy—confers special privilege and deflects guilt, for those white people who practice it, better than any other method in the known universe. It certainly does this better than any “race card” which non-white people use.
Jude24’s response was humble, even pithy. I’d like to think mine was, also:
I can’t wait for the world to come when we will all coexist in peace, equality, and love. Maranatha.
Thanks, Jude 24.
I think your statement neatly summarizes how Black people feel, while mine, which precedes it, says why.
Since that time, I’ve taken to calling that maxim The Maximum Maxim: Any charge made against one or more non-white persons is typically more accurately made against the system of white supremacy (aka racism).
So, just based on the words you’ve used, per Oxford—
rabid = having or proceeding from an extreme or fanatical support of or belief in something
identity = the fact of being who or what a person or thing is
politics = the assumptions or principles relating to or inherent in a sphere, theory, or thing, especially when concerned with power and status in a society
—it sounds like you’re talking about white supremacy.
To my knowledge, there’s no more rabid a system of identity politics yet built. Racism is more rabid than anything I’d muster on my best day. If you doubt me, just look at Brazil’s skin color code.
It’s like I always told my female friends who wanted to marry a rich guy: The best way to get a millionaire is to be one.
With your facile questions about blood drops, what you write, to me, sounds like “banal skin-deep superficiality being fomented by rabid identity politics.” Maybe the reason that you haven’t been able to get beyond it, with anyone in your faith community, is that you haven’t got beyond it, yourself.
In my experience, Black conversations of which white people approve, especially “deeper” ones, are typically those which do not assess racism/white supremacy as the dominant, provocative issue.
In other words, these conversations are usually ones that are conducted by espousing the techno-babble of economic theory, or the question of whether the state vs. private interests should have sway, or IRL nuances of hard sci-fi. Someone smokes a nice cigar. Someone else brings a bottle of port. There’s cool music, and tasty finger foods.
Often, the non-white people who have these conversations also have white sexual “partners.” This tends to make truthful conversations about racism more difficult for those non-white people, as well. That’s because non-white people, so engaged, will tend to meter their conclusions in terms of the comfort of those with whom they are having sexual relations.
In my opinion, you don’t have a right to the deeper conversations you seek, because you’re not going deep, yourself, if the topics you raise and how you conduct them are any example.
The minute your friends, colleagues, peers, and acquaintances (who happen to be more Black than you) get a more resilient, cogent race analysis than they currently possess, my guess is that you are going to need new friends.
“Racism with racism.” You don’t even have the basic concepts correct, yet you seek “a deeper conversation.” You’ve not earned it.
Thank you. I’ll accept any prayer, on my behalf, that you offer, for any reason, whatsoever.
My prayer is that the non-white people of the world—especially in the Christian church—will begin to honor both their white brothers and sisters and themselves by having pointed conversations about racism (white supremacy), and the burden that, by it, white people have created for the majority of the human species.
However: I hope these non-white people will do this only after they, themselves, have become more clear about this matter themselves, and that they make it their business to do so.
One of my mentors says, of non-white people, “If you don’t understand white supremacy—what it is, and how it works—everything else that you try to understand will only confuse you.”
I want non-white people to have those conversations with white people after they grok that.
If you properly could read my point, you might discover I did not say that at all.
I did say, and mean “with anyone in this corner of my faith community”.
I have my own surmisings why that might be true.
In some places people seek ways to walk together.
In other places they seek to divide, exclude, cancel, burn, shut down, dismiss, denigrate.
The way you walk is clear.
I invite you to differ with me, although i may not agree with your opinion.
Likewise if you disrespect and disabuse my right to differing opinion
through attempted impugning via hate, shame, guilt, or feigned victimhood
or other some such manipulations, constructs and machinations,
you have shown yourself failing intellectually honest intercourse.
Your thoughtful approach to a subject, being able to take arguments apart piece by piece, exposing many of ‘white privilege’ misconceptions and ideas. Although it seems your background is different from mine, I have to agree with your thoughts/posting.
@Timo, you’re correct: You said “this corner of my faith community.” I did not quote you correctly.
I recalled what I thought was the import of your statement—and kinda still do—and wrote that. I should have checked, then copied-and-pasted it.
I apologize for the error.
What I meant to say was:
With your facile questions about blood drops, what you write, to me, sounds like “banal skin-deep superficiality being fomented by rabid identity politics.” Maybe the reason that you haven’t been able to get beyond it, with anyone in this corner of your faith community, is that you haven’t got beyond it, yourself.
Maybe. Again, you’ve lead with allusion, and not a direct statement.
So, I don’t know which walkway, you’re saying, is clearly mine, though my guess is that you’re implying it’s the latter.
If so, instead of asking you to provide examples of where, exactly, I “divide, exclude, cancel, burn, shut down, dismiss, denigrate,” I’ll just quote one of my favorite writers, the prophet Amos; the third verse of his third chapter:
"Can two walk together, except they be agreed?"
People who walk together must, first, be agreed. That’s what the Bible says.
The Bible doesn’t say, “Can two be agreed, except they walk together?” The agreement comes first.
So, the way I walk is clear, much as you say. The way I walk is with those who agree, for example, that racism has a sole functional form: White supremacy.
People who don’t agree with that—who think that that is the most offensive, outrageous, Satanic thing anyone has ever said—will not walk with me, per Amos. Our paths may not even cross. I’m not compelled to agree with them, just so I can walk with them, however.
In other words, there are people who believe that “Black people can be just as racist as white people.” They believe this to be true, and would bet their dead mother’s cherry pie recipe on it.
I think that that statement is easily falsified, because, not only do I believe racism is white supremacy, but that belief is surrounded by a logic system, which I possess, as well.
So, when people say such things, I respond in a way that falsifies it, much as I’ve done, repeatedly, here, on Spectrum.
For example, I’ll say that, if racism wasn’t white supremacy, what would happen, sometimes, is that white people would raise racism, as a topic of discussion, at inconvenient times, and Black people would go mute, staring into their coffees in silence.
White people would loudly describe historical atrocities, slights, and indignities they’d suffered at the hands of Black people, and Black people would, after much of this, quietly say, “I feel your pain,” or, “I feel guilty for what my ancestors did to yours.”
A Black woman would stand up, confess the racism in her heart, begin loudly weeping, and the whole meeting would come to a halt, as white people rushed to hug her.
Now, neither you, @Timo; nor any of the white people who write about racism, here, on Spectrum — @ajshep, @Arkdrey, @GeorgeTichy, @Sirje, etc.; nor those who don’t, but say, “Black people can be just as racist as white people”; nor your your friends, colleagues, peers, and acquaintances (who happen to be more Black than you) have never seen any of this happen, in any of your entire lives.
But if racism were something anyone could practice, what I’ve just described would happen just as often as the opposite; i.e., as often as what actually does happen.
Black and white people, talking about racism at church potlucks, would be as uncontroversial and un-fraught with tension as talking about taxes or the weather, because everyone would be dealing with the pressures of racism.
Put another way: If Black people could be as racist as white people, they would be.