The American experiment has failed because it has been inequitable, unfair, unjust and discriminatory from the start, sanctioned by segments of a religion which propagated it while benefitting enormously from it.
For all the complexities and sharp disagreements among Christians on matters that shape our citizenship, a certain foundation of shared faith can guide all of us who believe we have a constructive, even transformative, role to play in society.
Just as Trump has not risen to the stature of the presidency, religious leaders who have blindly supported and defended him have not risen to the stature of their prophetic calling. A country cannot afford to have both king (president, in America’s case) and prophets fail all at once.
Both the Republican Party and the white evangelical megachurches of America may be back to normal by mid-summer. But if the rush to re-open sends the death rate spiraling upward, the white megachurch model may never recover.
This God-forsaken red stain on our white hands will never be washed clean until we white Christians repent and through peaceful, nonviolent protest declare, “We’re mad as hell and we’re not going to take any more dead black men at the hands of white police.”
I come from people who had to “steal away” to worship God. Slaveowners could not prevent my ancestors from worshiping God and caring for others. No politician in the current version of U.S. slavocracy will do so.
President Trump is running scared, and understandably so. His press room appearance to demand the reopening of houses of worship is proof positive. Without the so-called white evangelical vote, he has no chance at reelection.
Amid the widening divisions and deepening polarization in every area of life, we can make choices that are intended to bring people together rather than push them farther away.
The parable of “The Friend at Midnight” offers insight into the importance of a postal service now under threat. People of faith should weigh in on this important political and moral issue.