Sunday, August 13, 2017

Band-Aids and Civil Disobedience

The world seems to be crashing down around Dixie these days.
Innocents were run down in the streets by evil men.
The horrors of Hate, visited upon our fellow mankind. 

Nobody talks about the cause of Hate, or if they do it is couched is such thick psychosocial-jargon that it comes across as empty vanity prancing in the shoes of academics. And nobody seems to listen; they just find people to talk with who share the same views, so they don't have to listen, and the cause of Hate grows deeper into our world. Fear.
Fear is a murderer, not Hate. You can hate someone, even despise them, but if there is not even a single hint of Fear about them, there is no violence.
On the other hand, every day people kill people out of fear, victims who are not hated at all, just feared.
How many times did we see a white trucker, dragged from his rig by black youth who were trying to bash in his head with bricks? Or the video of Rodney King being assaulted by those who broke their vow of civic trust? So who brought us that loop of footage? into the safety of our homes? 
Who shows the brutality of street violence for the world to see? And who is more likely to be shown as the aggressor? The Media shows the black man to be a criminal who is like a pit bull: one moment relaxing and strong, the next moment murderous and out of control.
Then the media shows us white police officers shooting an unarmed man, so all white police have been painted by the Media as murders in a long line of strange fruit.
Who paints POC in shades that are to be feared? Who stirs the oppressed and marginalized communities into acts of incivility? Why do the major media outlets get a free pass to brainwash citizens toward destruction, conditioning them for the siren song of hate-groups who offer solidarity of force in a ever-thickening cloud of fear?
What happened in Virginia is not new. We see it every week on the streets of France or Syria or Gaza or Venezuela. We see it because the Media brings it to us, not to inform us but to gain viewership ratings so they can make more money by using Fear to generate crisis; this rallies our species to stop thinking critically and switch to reacting-mode.
We are being played by the greatest power in the world to make a buck off us, leaving us terrified of people who are different from us, because we are IGNORANT. Ignorant of other cultures, of other religions, of other communities that live 5 minutes from our homes. And that ignorance is deadly.

But what we also see, if we choose to not be ignorant, is the amazing way people are capable of loving each other. There is no greater illustration of this than the fellow believers at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston. I have never in my years seen a greater demonstration of the power of love.
And perfect Love casts out Fear. 
That Jesus would pray to God for those who were torturing him to death... torturing him because of Fear... that humbles me in ways that I struggle to see myself following. Emanuel showed me the power of "dying to your self", to vengeance, to hate-spawned-by-fear... the amazing people of Emanuel AME showed me that ordinary, amazing people are indeed capable of following Jesus, even to the cross. 
The dynamic tension between White Supremacy racists and BLM bigots will validate mutual violence until the scriptures in John 10:10 are fulfilled: the Thief comes to steal, kill and destroy. And this destruction comes not from Hate... it's from Fear... and that comes from not knowing people who are different from yourself: Ignorance. 

And there are very real issues that need to be addressed, to be dealt with in our daily life in America. Because we are still blinded by the band-aids that surround us, blinded, unless we have a friend from deepest, darkest Africa who needs a bandage on her forehead.

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