Tag Archives: hatred

In response to the killings at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church

From my friends who have commented on the act of terror that involved the killing of nine people, nine of God’s children, nine of my brothers and sisters, at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, I share, with permission, some words that touched me:

This is outrageous – this white terrorist murderer said “you’re raping our women and taking over our country and you gotta go” before killing 9 African Americans, and Fox is trying to spin this as the nutty right wing “Christian persecution” complex that somehow this is part of the war on people with traditional values. This was racial hatred – our own particular American sickness. The white shooter has not been portrayed as a “thug”, or even a terrorist, even though he has a mug shot and was arrested twice in the last 3 months. “We do know we’ll never understand what motivates someone to do this” (Governor Nikki Haley) Yes, we do understand what motivates him – he told them – racial hatred. And a white terrorist, according to the media, must have some sort of mental illness, or bad childhood, some reason to explain his actions, other than that he was raised in the US, where racial hatred is taught and not addressed and is so rampant that our media give this white kid all kinds of white privilege.
– Patrick Evans

What happened in Charleston was not random or senseless. It was an act of domestic terrorism fueled by ever present white supremacy. Church, let’s not live in denial.
– Christine Hong

Senseless (adj.): A word that forever needs to be extracted from our political and national vocabulary, especially after instances of mass violence. We can make sense of the horrific murders of nine black South Carolinians gathering for Bible study– and it starts with confronting a culture which idolizes guns and violence and refuses to acknowledge white supremacy.
– Kyle Cristofolo

Recent events are almost incomprehensible. From the precious lives lost, to how it happened, to the fact that these acts of hate happen way too often, to the policies that allow them to happen, to the hatred and bigotry that undergird the violence. Wish this wasn’t true. RIP, our fellow humans, brothers and sisters, and neighbors. It seems almost trite to say that we send thoughts and prayers to the impacted community…right? But maybe we do that, in combination with holding onto conviction and hope for a better tomorrow, that we have the courage and will for justice to co-construct better and more peaceful communities and country.
– Ester Sihite

And finally, my own words:

I grieve for my brothers and sisters, unknown to me in person yet my family nonetheless, who were killed in Emanuel AME Church. I rage against the racial hatred and anger that apparently resulted in the killing of God’s precious children. I ache at this bloody reminder of the power of the system of racism to shape our behavior. I hear a call, again, still, to work with my sisters and brothers more creatively and effectively to dismantle racism and to build community and to address gun violence. And I pray for the grace and courage and faith and hope to respond.

With thanks for my friends.

See you along the Trail.

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Filed under Antiracism, Current Events, Friends, Gun Violence

Easter, 2015

The world looks much the same;
horror, hatred, evil still remain.
Yet somehow, somehow all has changed.
Christ is risen!
May we experience and live
the Easter message
today and all days.

5 April 2015
Louisville, Kentucky

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Filed under Easter, Poem

No turning back

A friend’s post on Facebook today reminds me of the power of racism and of my need to respond.

Describing an experience from earlier today, my friend writes:

A bunch of people in a car just tried to run me off the road while calling me racial slurs and pulling their eyelids at me.

Horrifying. Horrible. Scary. Despicable. Stupidity. All the words shared by my friend’s friends apply.

Other words do as well.

Bigotry. Racism. A call to action.

In particular, people, such as me, who are part of the dominant culture, need to act:

  • To speak when bigotry and hatred rear their heads.
  • To challenge stereotypes in print, on video and wherever they appear.
  • To confront our friends, our families, ourselves when we use or accept stereotypes.
  • To learn the histories and current realities of our brothers and sisters. To learn how those histories shape current realities of our brothers and sisters. And how they shape the current reality of the dominant culture.
  • To take the responsibility to name racism for what it is.
  • To study systems of privilege to understand how they work and how they benefit us and how they can be resisted and dismantled and remade.
  • To consider where we live, where we go to school, how we use our money, who are the professionals who provide services to us, who owns the businesses we support.
  • To remain open to new understandings, new commitments, new challenges, new responsibilities.
  • To recognize that the commitment to seek racial justice lasts a lifetime.

That’s a partial list. Put together quickly. At a moment when my heart aches for a friend. I will revisit it. Amend it. Add to it.

The journey goes on. The struggle continues. There is no turning back.

See you along the Trail.

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Filed under Antiracism, Current Events, Friends