Days Black People Not Re-Enslaved By Trump

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

The Black Church Seduced by the "Dark Side"

One of the hallmarks of this administration has been the aggressive courting of the Christian Right. Unawares to many in the Black Community there is a large showing of Black Christians in this corner and they are not a new breed. Back when Martin Luther King Jr. was agitating for Civil Rights he was driven to write a letter from a jail cell to these "men of faith" who were content to line their pockets with tithes and offerings while doing nothing for black peoples progress.

So now these types have been given new life, like Anakin by "The Emperor." I know that's a lot of Star Wars analogies but the "Revenge of the Sith" is an excellent story of how those with good intentions can be sidetracked by their own lust for power. Let me begin with an article from Agape Press:

(AgapePress) - Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist is getting support from a group of black pastors who say judicial nominees like Janice Rogers Brown deserve an up-or-down vote.

Republicans in the U.S. Senate have filed a "cloture petition," a move that is intended to force an end to the Democratic-led filibuster of judicial nominees. The Senate is scheduled to vote on the matter on Tuesday. Two-thirds of the senators (67) must vote in favor of the cloture for it to pass. Frist says if that vote fails, he will move to have the filibusters declared out of order for federal judicial nominees -- a move Democrats have labeled the "nuclear option."

On Thursday (May 19), black religious leaders demanded that senators stop filibustering, and vote "up or down on Janice Brown." At a Capitol Hill news conference with Frist, the clergy members accused Democrats of blocking a confirmation vote on Brown because she is a black conservative.

Bishop Harry Jackson, president of the High Impact Leadership Coalition, said judges like Brown are needed to stop courts from overruling the people with decisions like those requiring the legalization of same-sex "marriage." Standing outside the Capitol, Jackson asked a question about those leading the filibuster: "Why are they afraid to put a black woman on the court?"

Jackson contends Democrats oppose Janice Rogers Brown because she will not find new constitutional rights that are not in the text. "The advocates for issues like same-sex marriage cannot find popular support to change the long-standing institutions of our land," he said. "Therefore they are using the back door in what I'm going to call 'legal sleight of hand' in order to get their way."

Jackson said America needs moral judges like Judge Brown and the other filibustered nominees on the courts -- not more judicial activists.


These particular black clergy are motivated by a great fear of Gay Marriage. With this single issue they have allowed themselves to be used by the Republican Party and the Bush Administration. Of particular interest is this comment:

Jackson contends Democrats oppose Janice Rogers Brown because she will not find new constitutional rights that are not in the text. "The advocates for issues like same-sex marriage cannot find popular support to change the long-standing institutions of our land," he said. "Therefore they are using the back door in what I'm going to call 'legal sleight of hand' in order to get their way."

Someone ought to remind the "good pastor" that the 13, 14 and 15 Amendments to the Constitution were at their times against "popular support to change the long-standing institutions of our land." The "good reverend" should also be reminded that the various Civil Rights Acts and the ruling of Brown V. among many other pieces of legislation also were against "popular support" yet I doubt seriously that he would want those laws overturned.

Now some idiot reading this will interpret my statements as equating "Same-Sex marriages" with Civil Rights. I do not. For the record I do not support Same Sex marriages. I also think the state should not be involved in what is actually a religious matter. I Believe the state should not be giving out marriage licenses or providing benefits based on marital status. Nor do I believe that insurance companies and the like should be doing so. I believe in a single payer who designates those who he or she wants to cover. Marriage should be left to whatever religious institution provides such services and they can choose who and under what circumstances they will perform marriages without interference from the state.

That said, the true nature of these black ministers are treading on ground they clearly do not understand and have stooped to racial scare tactics in order to support their claims:

"Years ago there were people in the South who wore white robes and white hoods. They intimidated many ethnic groups and other groups," he stated. "Today I believe that black-robed vigilantes are operating in the guise of American tradition, and they have taken away the true rights on an entire culture."

Christians, he said, are uniting against immoral judicial rulings. "The black church is going to clasp hands with the white evangelical church, and we are going to be a part of turning America's moral compass back to the way that it needs to be." Black and white churches, he said, are uniting to restore "America's moral compass."


Is this person serious? Klan imagery? And this man has people in his congregation that approve of this? It is highly likely that he does since I suppose that people like me, left once they saw the game for what it was OR like my mother just let it pass. But this isn't the first time that such imagery has been used. Other articles I have read have discussed how Dixiecrats used the filibuster to prevent votes on Civil Rights Legistlation. True indeed. However, the smart person knows that the tool isn't the problem, it's the person wielding it. How does a member of a minority group advocate the removal of a tool that preserves minority strength? Easy, this group of people, so obsessed by same-sex marriages identify with what white evangelicals have sold them that they now identify with them to the detriment of their own.


So this leads to the most recent article on the slipping moral character of the Black Church. The LA Times posted an article entitled: A U.S. Faith Initiative for Africa where it was reported that ministers such as TD Jakes, Donnie McClurklin and others were invited by the Head Liar in Charge, Condoleeza Rice to discuss Faith Based initiatives for Black Churches to provide Aid to Africa:

WASHINGTON — Escalating its courtship of a politically powerful constituency, the Bush administration is teaming up with some of the nation's best-known and most influential black clergy to craft a new role for U.S. churches in Africa.

The effort was launched last week, when more than two dozen leading African American religious figures met privately with Secretary of State Condoleezaa Rice and senior White House officials at the State Department, according to administration officials and meeting participants.

The hour longg session focused largely on how the administration's faith-based initiative could be expanded to combat the spread of HIV and provide help for tens of millions of children orphaned by the epidemic across Africa.

Some of the pastors said it was a matter of national security — that those orphans were susceptible to recruitment by Islamic extremists unless they could be exposed to churches such as theirs.


This meeting raises the othebogeymanan of the Black Church: Islam. Since the rise of the Nation Of Islam, many many Churhes have been upset by the rising numbers of blacks (especially males) turning to Islam. Many have said many disparaging remarks regarding Islam and Minister Farrakhan and Mohammed in their efforts to blunt defections to the NOI camp. Indeed for a few years the work of the NOI, culminating in the Million Man March had Church Leaders up in arms over the influence and credibility that Muslims had developed. So I cannot say that it is surprising at all to see that the "leadership" would want to step into Africa to turn people to "their churches."

If the Bush administration was so serious about the plight of Africa, why not invite Dr. James Smalls of Cornel University or the numerous Scholars and thinkers and organizers who have spent much of their lifetimes studying the issues that face Africa. No doubt they know who they are given that the FBI keeps tabs on such people in the US. But Rice didn't go there because this isn't about allieviating AIDS this is about political points and stripping away more black votes from the Democrats.

Going back to our Star Wars analogy: Anakin's fall to the Dark Side is precipitated by his want to save his wife. Palpatine uses this knowledge to offer Anakin hope. However; in order to get the power he wants he must do things that are not good. Eventually, Anakin does not see what he is doing as wrong but as neccessary to save his wife and assure effecient government. The parrallel is clear. Who would argue that AIDS relief efforts is a bad thing? If it takes axing fillibusters then what's the harm? It stands in the way of the greater good. "I know better than everybody else...."

The LA Times article pointed out some of the poisonous fruit being conceived by this meeting:

The meeting reflected the expanding relationship between some of the country's best-known black clergy and the Bush administration — a relationship that has been nurtured through a White House program that encourages funneling government grants to religious charities.

Illustrating the political benefit of that relationship, White House officials injected some Capitol Hill strategy into the session. They solicited support among the black pastors for controversial legislation that would allow faith-based charities in the U.S. to discriminate in hiring based on an applicant's religious beliefs — a provision that has spurred opposition from some Democrats and civil rights groups.

"Compassion has a way of cutting across partisan lines," said James Towey, the top White House official in charge of the faith-based programs, who asked the pastors to sign a letter endorsing the legislation.


Blacks, who have been at the forefront of fighting discrimination in the workplace, now have representatives who want to legalize discrimination in hiring. Imagine that!! I personally would not be applying for a job at a Church since I don't particular care to be bombarded with the general prejudices that are found in such places. Similarly I would not be applying for a job at a Temple , Mosque, or the like, However, some people don't have the same luxery of picking and choosing the jobs they apply for. Imaging you being a bus driver who happens to be Buddhist. And the ALAN AME church has a need for a bus driver and you qualify. Why should you be denied the job because you don't accept Jesus as your personal Lord and Saviour?

Of course this is/was the same situation facing Africans. If you didn't accept Church doctrine you couldn't get into schools. So now we get blacks doing the discriminating.

The other very obvious thing about this piece is that the administration made a clear political move with the "letter of support". So just as it was clear to us who had eyes to see and ears to hear, that Palpatine was using Anakin to further his own agenda, So is the White House is also using black clergy to furttheirhier aims. It is fitting that people in the Church are described as sheep. Sheep are not the smartest animals in the world. So long as their is some sort of leader they will follow. In fact Sheep will blindly follow the sheep in front of it even to it's death.

Links:
http://headlines.agapepress.org/archive/5/202005f.asp
http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/la-na-ministers29may29,1,1269719.story?ctrack=1&cset=true

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