BreakPoint: Charlottesville, Racism, and the Gospel

Responding to Darkness with the Light

The nation is reeling from Saturday’s chaos in Charlottesville. The Church cannot sit this one out.

The book of Revelation, chapter 7, gives us an extraordinary vision from God of the Kingdom of Heaven in its fullness: “a great multitude … from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne of God and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice: ‘Salvation belongs to our God/who sits on the throne/and to the Lamb.’”

What we saw this past weekend in Charlottesville was the exact, fiendish opposite. Crowds filled with hate, bent on violence. We saw not dazzling robes of white washed in the blood of the lamb, but the stains of red from human blood spilled in demonic anger.

I learned of what happened Saturday afternoon after landing in the Dominican Republic, where I’ll be teaching this week. Yesterday on BreakPoint, we promised part two of our series on the American suicide epidemic, and we will pick that up tomorrow. But today, facing the specter of racism in our country, it’s time for moral clarity.

And here it is: As my BreakPoint co-host Eric Metaxas tweeted over the weekend, racism is the very antithesis of the love of Jesus for all. I’ll expand on that thought: every racist ideology, including the white nationalism and neo-Nazi rhetoric and images displayed by the so-called alt-right in Charlottesville, is rooted in the pit of hell. There’s no defending it. It’s not Christian. It’s not American. And it ought not even be associated with conservatism.

And as My BreakPoint this Week co-host Ed Stetzer wrote at Christianity Today, it’s easy to say that there are “many sides” involved in violence and hatred. In fact, we Christians do well to call out the left-wing extremists like Antifa, who parade through downtowns smashing things. But Christ followers must also condemn this act, this protest, this violence in the strongest possible terms, and I’m grateful for those political and religious leaders who claim the name of Christ who wasted no time in doing so. The world needs to hear that clear Christian witness.

And still, these events make it painfully obvious that, while we need deft and courageous political leadership, it’s the Church that’s most needed now. Politics will not save us from ourselves. As one evangelical adviser to President Trump, Johnnie Moore, told CNN, “The right remains too passive and the left remains too political when it comes to ethnic divisions in this country. One side underestimates the issue and the other side provokes further conflict. Both sides distrust each other. This must end if we are to find national healing.”

I’m glad President Trump finally identified the alt-right by name, but his delay, especially in light of his long history of Twitter specificity, is an example of the passivity Moore described. As Senator Orrin Hatch tweeted, “We should call evil by its name. My brother didn’t die fighting Hitler for Nazis to go unchallenged today.”

Look, America has a race problem. Political parties, special-interest groups, and the media aren’t helping. In fact, too often, they make things worse.

Ours is a culture that loudly pays lip service to ideas like “human dignity,” “value,” and “human rights,” but renders them meaningless by tethering them to made-up identity politics or disgruntled, angry appeals to “heritage.”

Only the biblical vision of the image of God can ground universal dignity, value, and establish human rights. Understanding the biblical concept of the fall keeps us from finding the enemy only in the other, as if the problem is always outside of ourselves. No, as Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn wrote, “the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being.”

And only the restoration Christ brings offers any way forward past the hate, the hurt, and the history still threatening to tear our nation apart. Only the Church has that message—to proclaim and embody—in the midst of the brokenness all around us.

 

Charlottesville, Racism, and the Gospel: Responding to Darkness with the Light

In the midst of events that tear and separate, the Church’s proclamation is of Christ and His salvation. So we pray for our country and we join in the work of Christ, recognizing that it is His love that will heal hurts, restore relationships, and bring unity to people who were once divided.

Resources

A Compassionate Call to Counter Culture in a World of Racism
  • David Platt | Tyndale House Publishers | February 2015
#Charlottesville, the Christian Response, and Your Church's Call
  • Ed Stetzer | Christianity Today | August 12, 2017
Race, the Gospel, and the Moment
  • Tim Keller | The Gospel Coalition | August 14, 2017

Comment Policy: Commenters are welcome to argue all points of view, but they are asked to do it civilly and respectfully. Comments that call names, insult other people or groups, use profanity or obscenity, repeat the same points over and over, or make personal remarks about other commenters will be deleted. After multiple infractions, commenters may be banned.

  • Just One Voice

    I was wondering all weekend why the flags in our town were at half mast. Now I know. Seeing that I’m a low-news-media individual, I only learned of the violence yesterday (Monday).

    America has a race problem. Political parties, special-interest groups, and the media aren’t helping. In fact, too often, they make things worse. I couldn’t agree more. I hate the general news media.

    Scary stuff…and it only seems to be getting worse.

    • James

      If you find it scary, then it is your Christian duty as a man to figure out what is REALLY going on and say and do intelligent things about it. I don’t fault you for eschewing the mostly fake news, but, don’t be arrogant and full of your self thinking you can just jump in with an off the cuff opinion, uninformed and lacking in meditative reflection. Not that you have, yet, but I’ve noticed that a lot of people who don’t follow the news very closely do that.

      • Just One Voice

        Whoooaaaa, put on the brakes bro. Since when is it your place to tell me what my Christian duty is, especially without quoting any scripture? Since that’s where duty orders come from?

        For the record, I am extremely purposeful with my reading (or non-reading) of the news. A) I find that most news is extremely negative, biased, and life-draining. B) I will usually just read the headline and first couple of paragraphs, as I find the rest to be the author’s take on what happened. C) When I do read the news, I compare multiple sources, see what they agree on & come up with some sort of “average” to decide what is really happening. D) Because of A B & C, I spend the majority of my reading-time in the Bible & similar thought-provoking sources, as I find it has the very opposite effect of general news media. Please see Psalm 19:7-11 and Ecclesiastes 12:9-14.

        I realize you said things like “I don’t fault you…” and “Not that you have, but…”

        Dude, everyone’s got a BUT! I have this opinion about x, BUT! I realize a, b, and c, BUT! Yeah, I suppose they are z, BUT!

        Translation? BUT essentially nullifies what you said immediately before. So why even say it in the first place?

        *Pause, zoom back out to the big picture* My overall observation lately has been that groups keep responding with more hate, more anger, and more you’re-wrong-I-have-the-solution commands such as yours. To all that, I will kindly end with James 1:19-21 (ESV) — Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.

  • Steve

    If I saw correctly, there were two groups that clashed on Saturday. Both espouse hate. One is the white nationalists and one is the Antifa group.
    People are looking at one group and pinning it all on them. It takes two to tango, as they say.
    Hate needs to be called by name on both sides of this clash, not just the white nationalists.
    Over the 8 years of the Obama administration the racial divisions in the country have grown. When BLM killed police, where was the outrage when President Obama did not condemn them by name?
    President Trump yesterday named the neo-Nazi extremists, and that is not even enough for the main stream media.
    There needs to be zero tolerance for violence at demonstrations in order that everyones’ rights and lives are protected.

    • James

      Anti-hate can be as stupid and hateful as hate. If anti-hate hates as much as hate hates, then at the very least we’re looking at a lot of hypocrisy.

      • Scott

        This is very true! Another sad truth is that very few people are actually working together to solve the problem…

        In my opinion classism is just as bad… and perpetuates racism. To further aggravate the situation, America is losing its middle class and disparity between the haves and have nots is growing.

        I also see segregation as a major problem… Urban (non-white) vs. suburbs (predominantly white). How can we understand each other if we are choosing to distance ourselves? Truth is, few people are willing to get uncomfortable and actually do something about it.

    • jason taylor

      Technically it only takes one to tango. If only one party wishes violence there will be violence. Though “a plague on both your houses” is not uncommonly applicable. But prudence must never forget that so long as man is fallen, so long will the last one to beat swords into plowshares and spears into pruning hooks prey on those busy farming with their new plowshares and pruning hooks.

      • Darth Hideous

        You just joined the tango with Steve now didn’t you jason taylor. 1+1= TANGO

  • James

    I believe that God is not a respecter of persons, and I believe what God’s Word says in Acts 17:
    Acts 17:26
    24 God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands;
    25 Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to
    all life, and breath, and all things;
    26 And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and
    hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation;
    But, that said about my personal religious and spiritual convictions, it is my duty to point out to you that you are making the same mistake the ignorant busybodies who pushed abstinence in the name of temperance with the 18th Amendment and the Volstead Act.
    Just as the anti-drunkenness of the busybodies back then became a much worse problem than the drunkenness they supposedly wanted to mitigate, now it’s a sad fact that anti-racism is a much worse problem than racism.
    Can’t you see how the problem of racism is like alcoholism, scatted and diffused and mostly an individual problem, whilst the problem of anti-racism is institutionalized and has perverted the laws and is used to destroy what’s left of our limited government under our Constitution?
    Just as the self righteous busybodies of long ago would have accused me of favoring drunkenness because I despised “Prohibition,” so too now the self righteous, and Marxist, busybody anti-racists try to accuse me of being a racist because I am concerned about the wickedness of the way the pursue their cause. Well, I didn’t really understand what was going on before but I’m figuring it out now and I’m telling you that ignorance and stupidity about racism and anti-racism are very dangerous to us as Christians and as Americans, far more so than alcoholism and drunkenness ever were.

    • Just One Voice

      And we wonder why people don’t like Christians.

      Brother, your readiness & passion are very evident. But may I kindly encourage you to heed the following words (emphasis mine):

      2 Timothy 4:2 preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.

      Also James 3:13-18
      Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good conduct let him show his works in the meekness of wisdom. But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth. This is not the wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice. But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

      Proverbs 15:1,4 A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger…A gentle tongue is a tree of life”

      Respectfully,

      • Scott

        I really like your reply.

        “Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” ~ Colossians 4:6

    • Joel Stucki

      James, you are just simply dead wrong. Racism is not mostly individual, it is and always has been institutionalized. Otherwise we wouldn’t have needed a 13th amendment and we wouldn’t have needed a civil rights act, and we would still (at least) have Jim Crow, or maybe even slavery, and blacks wouldn’t be able to vote, etc., etc. And I find your use of terminology concerning. Would you say you are not “anti-racist?” If you are not anti-racist, doesn’t that by default make you a racist? I’m gonna give you the benefit of the doubt here and assume you just haven’t thought through the words you have chosen here.

      But your comparison to prohibition is ridiculous. You are comparing a law created to curtail the individual rights of citizens with the philosophical position that all citizens should have rights. There is absolutely no comparison to be made there.

  • Loretta

    Where is the church in the midst of all this hate that’s flowing through our country. Where is the church in Chicago where children are being killed every week/ Where was the church in Charlotte where the hate poured like a river in the streets. Is the church of today playing offense or defense. For the church to have any meaning in todays culture it needs to be where they hate is the strongest.

  • ah.1960

    To say that the church needs to be involved is true, but admittedly, I’m not sure what we should do.

    As Christians we can make a pronouncement against the hatred of the KKK and Black Lives Matter and the other groups represented at the event. There is no question that these groups are hate groups.

    As Christians we can and should pray about this issue and for our nation.

    But should we as Christians have traveled to Charlottesville and attempted to stand between the two sides that were both bent on violence? I’m not sure I can support that Biblically.

    Should we as Christians demand the removal of Confederate monuments? Again, I’m not sure I can support that Biblically. (Wherever ISIS goes, they seek to destroy a nation’s history by destroying its historical monuments. Should we do the same?)

    Should Christians serving in the Virginia police forces represented at the event used force to stop the violence or stepped aside and let the two sides at each other?

    Quite honestly I am not sure what the Biblical mandate is in this case beyond Romans 12:9 (“Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil. Cling to what is good.”) and Matthew 5:44 (“Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.”)

    I appreciate John Stonestreet, but I’m not sure the application or actions we should take in this case are as clear cut as we might like to think. The question, though, is worth more discussion and thought.

    • Gina Dalfonzo

      “But should we as Christians have traveled to Charlottesville and attempted to stand between the two sides that were both bent on violence? I’m not sure I can support that Biblically.”

      I think I can: “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.”

      • ah.1960

        An excellent verse for this situation, Gina.

        Please don’t think I am trying to avoid the question, but I wonder if we need to take a closer look at what peace or peacemaking is all about. Is it just the cessation of hostilities or is it something deeper?

        By applying force, we can prevent each side from committing violence against the other. Would doing so fulfill Christ’s command to us to be peacemakers?

        Hostilities between North and South Korea stopped more than 60 years ago.
        Would anyone say these two are at peace with each other?

        • jason taylor

          North and South Korea went for generations with a stalemate that allowed quiet folk in South Korea to live quietly. If you demand a criterion for “peace” any higher then that between nations you are surely to be disappointed. By your definition there really is no such thing as peace in a fallen world.

      • Steve

        Jordan Peterson espouses (as do many others) changing ourselves first if we are to change the world.
        Solzhenitsyn claimed that the reason the Soviet Union was so bad was that so many people were lying or accepting the lie.
        His premise was “let the lie come into the world, let it even win; but not through me.”

    • Just One Voice

      I like your adherence to supporting things with Scripture! That is not seen very often on these forums.

    • Hoopyding

      Sorry; I know that White conservatives keep on calling BLM a hate group, but they really don’t seem to get what a hate group is. It isn’t a binary issue with clear pushback on both sides. BLM exists because of fundamental imbalance and injustice, which conservative Whites still fail to properly acknowledge, instead, insisting, as Donald Trump does, that it is “all sides”. That’s called deflection. It is a failure to take ownership of a particular racist problem that is undeniably White and has no polar opposite.

      Certainly there are bad apples in every cart. But, until White conservatives actually learn a bit about history and the particular, extreme prejudice and hate that has been directed to Blacks for hundreds of years, they have no right to stand in judgement of BLM.

      Black people have been lynched in the United States by White Christians within the last 50 years. Let that sink in. It simply is not a polar opposite to BLM.

      • ah.1960

        “Black people have been lynched in the United States by White Christians within the last 50 years.” Please provide proof to back up your claim.

      • jason taylor

        Directing violence at, “White Christians” or just “Whites” is enough in itself to qualify as a hate group. Nor is there a need for there to be a “binary issue” as if one mob ceases to be a mob because it has supposedly been less successful in it’s mobbing. And I know a lot about history and frankly I do not care because BLM is claiming the right to riot based on whose second cousin twice removed they do not like.

      • Darth Hideous

        What right do you have to stand in judgement of “white christians”? It’s the hypocrisy that angers people with movements like this. “Pigs in a blanket”, police being targeted and killed, property being destroyed, etc. All because a president and a group of violent people became enraged before due process could be completed.

    • Jeff Miller

      The church is the body of Christ. When you look at 1 Corinthians 12 and 13, examine what gifts you have and how you can bring those gifts to the table that is in front of you. You don’t have to necessarily go to Charlottesville or find a way to conter-protest or get involved politically, just do what you can in your own community and your own sphere of influence to love one another and meet someone’s needs the best that you can with the guidance and leading of The Holy Spirit. If more members of the body did this, we would be combating hatred with love at an even greater level worldwide. Perhaps we may not ever get media attention, and we certainly won’t save everyone, but we can make a positive difference through Christ nonetheless.

      • ah.1960

        I appreciate your points, Jeff, but the article specifically addressed the church’s silence on the Charlottesville incidents.

        I do indeed support my local food pantry, YFC ministry in the local high schools, etc., and am happy to do so in the name of Christ, but none of that addresses the question of Charlottesville.

        So if the problem is that we as the Christian Church and I as an individual Christian am too silent on what happened there, what can or should I be doing, specific to that event(s)?

    • Joel Stucki

      Confederate monuments are NOT just “history.” They are, intrinsically, monuments to the Confederate cause, which is inseparable from white supremacy, and therefore they ARE symbols of racism and hatred. Ditto the Confederate flag. (Yes, I am aware it was a battle flag. Doesn’t matter.) To claim it as merely a symbol of Southern heritage is to misappropriate the symbol, or at least to be very selective about heritage.

      Take them down and put them in museums, like they did in NOLA. That way history is preserved and can be put in a proper context. Otherwise–yes, they are symbols of hate, and it is a moral imperative to demand their removal.

      • ah.1960

        Making a sweeping generalization that “Confederate monuments…are intrinsically monuments to the Confederate cause.” is an oversimplification of the Civil War, its causes, and the loyalties of those involved.

        Lincoln was elected as the first President from the Republican Party, which was formed as an abolitionist party, but his interest was as focused equally (some would say more so) on the preservation of the Union. There were devout Christians in the Confederate armies, like Robert E. Lee, who had no love for slavery, but felt his loyalty to his state of Virginia trumped his loyalty to the federal government.

        Certainly families were divided with those living in Northern states serving in the Union army and those living in Southern states serving in the Confederate army. Brother truly was fighting against brother.

        None of this is to justify the evil of slavery, but the issues involved here, indeed each of our own lives are not one-dimensional. Treating them as such diminishes the pain and cost of that conflict for our nation as a whole.

        • gladys1071

          i agree history is a lot more nuanced , someone like Robert E. Lee should not be demonized for for being loyal to the confederecy.

          Human beings and the history of a nation is complex, and it has its good and bad, their are many shades of gray in a person and in the history of a nation.

          No one person is going to be morally perfect or a nation.

    • jason taylor

      If in fact Christians in the Virginia police force are not prepared to use force when ordered to keep two ostentatiously obnoxious factions from beating each other to a pulp in defiance of the law(not to mention hurting people who have nothing to do with either party) then clearly they should not be in the police force. The police are there to control and punish evildoers and if one is going to refuse to do that one is simply a thief for taking the salary given for doing so. It is not a matter of whether it is right to use force or not. It is a matter of whether someone who took a job expressly for the purpose of using force when called has a right to not do his duty.

  • NorrinRadd

    I’m sorry, but you’re wrong in saying Trump waited too long in calling out the alt-right by name. We conservatives got mad at Barry for shooting from the lip, as the saying goes, in hastily proclaiming things like “The police acted stupidly.” When Trump made his original comments, things were still very fluid, and “naming names” of only one side would have been precipitous. Even now, it’s not clear which “side” initiated the actual violence, and there is even a bit of doubt about the exact circumstances of the vehicular homicide. No doubt that suspect has a known history of violence, but in the matter at hand, some witnesses and recordings suggest he acted out of panic when his car was assaulted.

    • Gina Dalfonzo

      Please refer to the former president by his last name and not as “Barry.” Thank you.

      • NorrinRadd

        Um, no.

        You’re welcome.

        • Gina Dalfonzo

          Very well. Bye.

      • Darth Hideous

        Why? Is free speech monitored and edited here as well? Everyone knows who Barry is and what NorrinRadd is referencing.

        One should never react hastily, especially in the sort of situation that happened in VA. We also now know more truth about how these two groups clashed and why the police were told to “stand down.”

        • Gina Dalfonzo

          Because, as the comment policy above clearly lays out, we are in the business of running a civil and polite discussion forum, and part of that includes speaking of others with proper respect, including those with whom we disagree. Commenters who are not interested in complying with that policy are welcome to take their comments elsewhere.

  • Joel Stucki

    Thank you.

  • ah.1960

    Perhaps we should ponder C.S. Lewis’ comments regarding those on opposite sides of a war.

    “I have often thought to myself how it would have been if, when I served in the first World War, I and some young German had killed each other simultaneously and found ourselves together a moment after death. I cannot imagine that either of us would have felt any resentment or even any embarrassment. I think we might have laughed over it (p. 119).” Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

    • jason taylor

      That is a soldierly comment. Europe has long had a tacit “soldiers union” designed to make sure that it was not more uncomfortable and that there were no hard feelings about the matter and it was easier because most soldiers just fired in the direction of their enemy rather then at individuals. In the 1700’s for instance it was bad manners for pickets to shoot at each other unless there was a commando raid on because it made a lot of noise, and everyone had a lot of work tomorrow and needed their sleep. It wasn’t the same as “loving your enemy” but it was a parable. It is something to learn from when you understand it and I have tried to take it to heart.

      To get an idea of what Lewis meant try watching the famous “Men of Harlech” singing contest from Zulu.

  • ah.1960

    Joel, with all due respect, your statements go way beyond and outside of what the historical record supports. One simply cannot paint every person who fought for the Confederacy as favoring “white supremacy and slavery.” This simply is not true.

    As for General Lee’s motivation, it is quite significant. People like Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson did not fight for the Confederacy to sustain slavery. Their loyalty was to their states over the federal government. They both were men of honor, character, and integrity.

    Did you know that both Lee and Jackson were devout Christians? So even though they fought for the Confederacy, both have been cleansed from their sins by the blood of Jesus Christ just as we (and I hope also you) have been, and they will be in heaven with us. I look forward to meeting them.

    • Joel Stucki

      That’s not what I said. I said nothing whatsoever about each individual fighting for the Confederacy. I made statements about the Confederate government. So yeah, my statements are absolutely supported by the historical record.

  • Scott

    I really like John’s use of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn quote, “the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being.”

    Our church is conducting a series of discussions open to the public concerning topics such as racism, LGBT rights, immigration, etc. We host these discussions in local breweries and brand them “Issues and Ales.” This months discussion was held this week and the topic was “Racism in America.” Ironically the dates, times and subject matter were determined back in March so the timing couldn’t have been more appropriate for the subject matter this month.

    We asked the question “what can we do to help solve the problem of race relations in America?” Human to human contact is essential for forming relationships… what would it look like if we were willing to live next door to a low income family that did not share our skin color? What would it look like if we were willing to volunteer in the inner-city public schools? What if our kids went to those schools? What if our suburbs were equally mixed with all ethnicities represented and the same were true for the urban landscape? The truth is most White Americans are not willing to do what it takes to get there. Most are not willing to move in and get uncomfortable. Develop the relationships necessary to gain trust and understanding. None of this is easy… but what would it look like if we truly committed to seeing it happen. What if we tried to live it? I think we all need to ask where the line dividing good and evil is in our heart and how far will we go towards removing that evil.

    • cbarr

      most whites are not willing to do what it takes???! stop please with the black vs white vs yellow vs brown…. what you just stated could be said-since it is a broad generalization, about any race. What not instead-stay , rely, worship on and meditate on Christ’s words, commands to love. Simplicity will always wins, Christ’s simplicity.

      • Scott

        I had a feeling when I wrote that, it wouldn’t be popular. : )

        

I don’t disagree with you… it shouldn’t be about one color vs. another color. I wish we lived in a country that was further along than we are when it comes to hate and racism. Unfortunately the very nature of racism is “black vs white vs yellow vs brown.”

Since terms/phrases like “White Privilege” and “Institutional Racism” have become main stream, shouldn’t we ask ourselves why?

        A pastor (I will use the name Rick) who was present at our discussion this week told us a story about how he was driving an elderly lady to church one Sunday morning. Rick was driving through one of the most impoverished parts of our city when he was pulled over by a police officer. At the time he was traveling just under the speed limit… he and the elderly lady are African American. The police officer approached Rick’s car and asked for his license and registration. When the police officer came back to the car Rick asked why he was pulled over. The officer said he was speeding. When he told the officer the speed he was driving the officer said “well, it looked like you were speeding.” The police officer was white. The officer then asked the pastor what he was doing in that part of town. Rick replied “we are driving to church.” The officer asked several more questions and then proceeded to follow Rick all the way to he church. Of the stories he told, this was by far the most “mild.”

        There is validity in those terms and we have to ask ourselves what can we do about it. What can we do to expunge the need for such ugly terms/phrases as those? It has been just about 150 years since President Lincoln affirmed the Emancipation Proclamation. We should be further along. What exists in our own hearts that impedes such progress?

        Sadly I witness too many of my own peers unwilling to change their life styles to make a real difference. Trust is earned through relationships.

        • BLBeamer

          My own son was pulled over after midnight in a small college town in our state. My son was on his way home from working a late shift. He had just spent 10 hours working a fairly physical and menial job. He was, as you might imagine, very tired.

          It’s still not clear why the policeman really pulled my son over, but from the very beginning of his interaction with my son, the officer assumed my son had been drinking. My son passed the breathalyzer. The policeman was visibly disappointed, so he insisted my son take it again. He passed again. The policeman called for backup and had my son do the various field sobriety tests, which my son also passed.

          The policeman became irritated that he was not able to cite or arrest my son despite him “being sure” my son had been drinking. When my son asked him why he had been pulled over, the officer said that my son’s eyes looked bloodshot. My son’s car had tinted windows and it was dark outside.

          Was this racism? Or, maybe just a lousy or bored cop? Or maybe since it was a college town they figured the odds were good that a college age man driving that late was on his way home from a bar. Whatever it was, I believe my son was profiled. Perhaps the policeman needed to fill his quota of citations for the month. I don’t know.

          I’m not discounting Rick’s experience but I do think that it is too easy to always blame racism for these types of events.

          P.S. Both my son and the officer were white.

      • Scott

        Also I apologize… I may not have done the best job of adhering to one of my favorite verses:

        “Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” ~ Colossians 4:6

  • cbarr

    First let me begin with I love break-point and thank you once again for bridging our faith with culture today. I initially heard this on the radio and finally got to read this…the phrase ‘alt-right’ made my focus even closer as it is a term which has been promoted/publicized/twisted to the purposes of the left these days, to marginalize anyone who differs from their agenda,broadly paint them as evil. The epitome of what the side which lost last years election (both dem + rep), has been drumming to the public, incessantly. They also excel and practice dividing people, races, cultures,segregating us all-the ultimate opposite of Christ’s message. I heard a conversation with Dinesh DeSousa last night and he said it best, if you want to define what an ultra-right person really would be- he would be the one running around tearing up stop signs on roads as he would want no government at all! …Media’s use of ‘alt-right is semantics used to shame, therefore please do not sate their wishes. God Bless us all!

  • OllieProphet

    If the anti monument movement is so clearly defined by racist southern motives, then how do you explain the destruction of a Lincoln monument in Chicago? Or the calls, now, for the removal of Washington’s monuments, whom, aside from leading this new nation’s fight for Independence, but had freed his slaves well before it was a popular.
    The connection to the cause of slavery simply does not disqualify the legitimate desire to remember with reference your fallen warriors. Those southern monuments did not stop the civil Rights movement and progress all these years, yet somehow, suddenly, they cannot be allowed. This is nothing more than Leftist passive aggressiveness. “Please stop your hateful speech/ behavior, or I will be forced to punch you in the face” is the msg we are being given by the alt left.

    • Joel Stucki

      I think removing monuments of anyone who happened to own slaves is dumb. I think removing monuments erected to people specifically for what they did to preserve slavery is appropriate. We never erected a monument to Washington for being a slave owner. But we erected statues of Gens. Lee, Jackson, and others specifically because they fought for a government whose sole reason for existence was the oppression of non-whites. The fact that Lee himself opposed slavery is irrelevant. The government he fought for existed to preserve an institution which he found personally distasteful, yet he fought because he believed allegiance to state trumped allegiance to nation. Why should an otherwise good and noble man be commemorated for his worst act?

  • Jeff Pittman

    Keep your history in front of you. That reminds you of where you were and where you need to go.
    The percentage of people who are actively white supremacist is so de minims as to be unworthy of the vast media and cultural attention being focused on them.
    The reason the media focuses on them is that the focus becomes a way of bludgeoning the populace with their progressive message, as in, one is guilty so all are guilty.
    Again if you ignore them they will lose their power. Why waste the time? They don’t have enough numbers to elect a dog catcher much less a state or federal representative.
    The narrative supported by the left and unfortunately, some on this string is that we are all inherently racist – note that we limit our comments to white people about this topic – and that we have to grovel at the god of liberalism to properly expunge ourselves from this stain.
    In short, the left needs racism because it gives them purpose and meaning to an otherwise bankrupt set of ideals.

  • Jeff Pittman

    well said. thank you.

  • Kwestian

    The nature of ad hominem attack is caricature of person making a case instead of addressing their arguments. I fully agree with the arguments against racism, but the march in Charlottesville was in protest of removing a statue without due, legal process. I doubt that most of those marching were white supremacists, but it just takes a few to respond angrily when opponents, who didn’t bother with a parade permit, start throwing urine and surround the parade destination.

  • benJephunneh

    If you’re a Christian, you are required to refer to your leaders with respect. You’re not on a first-name basis with President Obama, I suspect.