White supremacy pervades US life, says scientist – Baptist News Global

The question of white supremacy in the United States it is not limited to people from the past who expelled racial hatred, said researcher and writer Robert P. Jones at a Baptist gathering in Kentucky.

“When most whites hear the word ‘white supremacy,’ they immediately conjure up some sort of grainy black-and-white photo of the Clan burning on a cross, but it’s folded and wrinkled, and it’s old and faded,” Jones said at a forum on Oct. 8 hosted by Baptist Seminary of the Institute for Black Churches in Kentucky. “And one thing that helps us is that it refers to the word ‘white supremacy’ which is very far from us.”

However, Jones insisted, white supremacy is “close to home,” and evidence of this can be seen in housing patterns across the United States. White Americans used redrawing to separate communities, and then made sure white settlements enjoyed better public services than settlements inhabited by other races, he said.

“The supremacy of whites is nothing but the idea that the lives of whites are more valuable than others, that whites should enjoy better benefits, better jobs, better access to parks, better schools.”

“White supremacy is nothing else than the idea that the lives of whites are more valuable than others, that whites should enjoy better benefits, better jobs, better access to parks, better schools, all that, ”Jones explained. “And that has been a basic principle of white society for almost the entire history of our country.”

Unfortunately, he noted, American Christians not only “closed their eyes” to injustice, but advocated teachings “compatible with that view of the world”.

Robert P. Jones (Photo: Noah Willman)

Jones is a columnist and founder and CEO of PRRI, an organization that deals with topics related to religion, culture and public policy. He is the author of a book for 2020 White for too long: The legacy of white supremacy in American Christianity and an earlier work entitled The end of white Christian America. He grew up as a Southern Baptist in Mississippi, and graduated from Mississippi College and the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary before earning a doctorate in religion from Emory University.

Lewis Brogdon

His observations on the BSK forum were in response to questions from interviewer Lewis Brogdon, director of the BSK Institute for Black Church Studies. The event was part of the “Autumn Celebration” of the Cooperative Baptist Society of Kentucky at Third Baptist Church in Owensboro. Jones also preached during the opening service at the CBF meeting in Kentucky and led one of the introductory sessions of the meeting.

The roots of white supremacy in America can be traced back to its earliest immigrants from Europe, Jones said. They viewed America as “destined by God to be a private land of promise for white Christians.” He said the condemnation led to the enslavement of Africans and the unjust and cruel treatment of the indigenous population.

In his latest book, Jones delves into his family’s race history. His research has revealed some disturbing truths. For example, his grandfather was among a group of deacons in a Baptist church in the early 1960s who took turns guarding the church steps every Sunday. Their purpose was to ban blacks from entering.

Learning about your family’s complicity in racism it caused him a lot of trouble, he said. “There were moments when I was digging through historical material, clarifying my family’s history, that I had to step back and take a walk.”

During his sermon, Jones identified three ways white Christians could address white supremacy:

  • Learn the truth of history. “If every white Christian and every white Christian church in America wrote a truer confessional history of our failures on racial equality, it would be a good first step toward real healing in our communities.”
  • Build relationships across racial divisions. “Casual connections and the replacement of pulpits are not enough. We need to build spaces that create real relationships. We cannot love all our neighbors well if we do not know them. ”
  • Look at the “unfair economic benefits that white institutions have gained since the founding of the country.”This is a recognition of Jesus’ teaching that “where our treasure is, there will be our heart.” He called on white communities and individuals to make “significant contributions to historically black institutions or non-profit institutions that primarily serve colored people.”

Injury caused by white supremacy it’s not limited to colored people, Jones said. White people must “understand once and for all how the supremacy of whites has taken away our own heritage, our ability to be in the right relationships with fellow citizens, with ourselves, and even with God,” he said. “Computing with white supremacy is now an inevitable moral choice for us.”

Kasey Jones

At the closing service of the meeting held the next day, Kasey Jones, associate coordinator for outreach and growth of the World Cooperative Baptist Fellowship Global, also stressed the need to be honest with the past and acknowledge the damage caused by systemic racism.

“Ladies and Gentlemen, I just want to encourage you to get the job done, ”Jones said. “It’s worth the trip. And when you’re struggling with findings and the realization that death and damage may have been caused by the community you grew up in, the church you worshiped, and perhaps even the arms and legs of those around your dinner table, don’t try to deny or dismiss it . Sit with him and give it to God. ”

She stressed that this experience could open the door to a brighter future.

“There is a God who gives courage to consider new friendships, relationships and family expansion,” she said. “And there is a God who can transform unpleasant truths as the foundation into a new, powerful ministry.”

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Facing the clear and present danger lurking among white evangelicals today Opinion of Robert P. Jones

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