Monday, October 23, 2006

Not so black and white

This week's column is up. It's the beginning of a short series on Black Theology. I've been wanting to do this for some time and now seems as good as any.



Kansas Bob said...

Growing up in NYC gave me the gift of growing up in an ethnically and racially diverse neighborhood. Prejudice was prevalent among whites/blacks/Italians/Puerto Ricans/etc ... but for me friendship was colorblind when I was young. Unfortunately for me I became a bit prejudiced as I grew older.

That began to change in the years after I came to faith in Jesus - I wish it came sooner but it did come. Over time I began to grieve the legacy that my ancestors left me. I can remember a church service in the early 1990s when I began to confess my ancestral sin of slavery (my dad was raised in Mississippi) to an older African American man in my church ... he graciously accepted my words of sorrow for the way my ancestors treated his ancestors.

I guess the journey of love is one that is marked with sorrow ... sorrow for how the white church has acted toward our African American brothers ... sorrow for how apathetic we can be toward the inhumanity ... sorrow for how little we have changed since the 1960s.

Thank you for writing on this. I am looking foward to the next edition of your column Julie.

Blessings, Bob

carrie said...

Hey Julie,

Can the titles "War Between the States," or "The War of Northern Agression, " or even, "that recent unpleasantness" really be a classic case of postmodern linguistic power games? I mean, the terms have been in use for all of the 140 years since the war. They aren't recent or postmodern. ;-)

While I admit the southern resentment of the north has been real in my lifetime, I feel like most southerners are like me. We resent what happened, but don't hold anyone alive today responsible for it. I don't hate anyone from the north simply because of what someone did a century and a half ago. And honestly, I'm not sure there is any going back to fix what happened, so you move on. Most of us would agree the ultimate outcome of the war was good- the aboilition of slavery and the retention of the unity of the U.S. It is just one of those "did the end justify the means" situations.

Since we can't go back and change the past, I think a lot more can be accomplished by focusing on what can be done now than in finding out who to blame now. Of course, I do see and understand the point you've made before- that to understand how to move forward we have to know what really happened in the past and figure out how to deal with the situation now.

Some situations are "easier" than others to address as a nation or people group. We can go to the original inhabitants of Bikini Islands and apologize and try to restore their way of life (although not their island, unfortunately). But other situations are much more complicated (as if that example isn't complicated enough!).

I look forward to hearing more in future columns.


julieunplugged said...

The names of the Civil War reflect a trend that is postmodern to rename in order to describe more accurately or to relieve a term of the implicit power move inherent in it. I didn't mean that as a denigration but as an example! Postmodernism's birth is dated to the end of WWI so it'spretty old. :)

You are totally right about the fact that we have to make adjustments now and to learn from the past to make a better future.

My columns coming up will focus not so much on what we've done wrong but on how those wrongs shaped a theology that I find inspiring! Hope it inspires you and others too.


carrie said...

trend that is postmodern to rename in order to describe more accurately or to relieve a term of the implicit power move inherent in it. I didn't mean that as a denigration but as an example!

Well, I really didn't think you were denigrating anything! LOL! It made me smile, actually. I was just curious about how those names could be considered postmodern. Now I get it I think. You mean they may have the same purpose as the " rename in order to describe more accurately" (at least for the person doing the renaming ;-) ) "or to relieve a term of the implicit power move inherent in it." For southerners, it was never a "civil war." It was a war for independence. (In fact, that's another name for the war...the War for Southern Independence.)

Anyway, I like the way you put it. I'll have to ponder how people have done that in the past century. Why is it considered postmodern? I'm just curious because it seems like that would be a longstanding tactic used to express a minority position or win sympathy.


Chuck said...

Are you planning to hear James Cone in Dayton this weekend? We can't make it on Saturday, but plan to make it to the service on Sunday morning.