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Archive for June 6th, 2020

Racism

Posted by appolus on June 6, 2020

Oh no, he is going to write about racism! Yeah, that’s right and I already know it will upset both sides. Who am I to write about racism in America? Well, I would consider myself an impartial observer. I hear the snorts of my black brothers and sisters because I am white. No matter, I do have an impartial view. I came to the states 30 years ago. In that sense I am an outsider. I am also a passionate historian, so I know about the civil war, what led up to it, its conclusion, reconstruction and finally Jim Crow. I know who John Brown was and I know who William Wilberforce and John Newton were. If you do not know any of those details you really do not have an informed opinion.

Okay, so now I claim to be impartial and informed. The country that I came from is Scotland. The black cause and the native American cause was well known where I come from. The reason? Scottish people have been discriminated against for the better part of a thousand years. Subjugated for centuries, identity robbed, clothing and speech that spoke to who we were as a people, made illegal. The Highlands of Scotland were “cleared.” Cleared you ask, what is that? The people were literally burned out of there crofts and houses and “sent away.” Many ended up in the lowlands of Scotland and many were sent to the States, oftentimes as indentured slaves.

When I came to the States I worked in construction, I was a bricklayer. And I ran into racism quite often, meaning I would hear guys speak on the subject of black people in racist terms. Here was my argument and lived experience that upset both black and white people here in the States. I would tell both sides of where I grew up. I grew up in a “scheme.” The full title was “housing scheme.” It was cheap local government owned properties that housed, for the most part, poor working class people. Now here is the thing. I would ask the white guy to explain why, where I came from, we had the exact same crimes and problems that the projects had and not a black guy to be found. We had drugs, gangs, addicts, prostitution single mothers with many different children to many different fathers. The only thing we did not have was gun violence for the most part, praise the Lord, although my mothers friend had her son gunned down in the street and killed.

Where I came from gangs and drug “lords,’ were basically untouchable. Indeed ask any person from my home town, who owns the buses and the taxis and the bars and many other “legitimate,’ businesses? They could tell you their names. Drug dealers. Witness a crime, tell the police? Nooo. That would be grassing and we were raised in a culture never to grass. We hated the police. And anyway, tell what you saw and most likely your apartment would be burned out and things would only get worse after that. We were locked into generational poverty and all the curses that goes along with that. The white guys hated that story. Why? Because it meant that the projects in America and all its problems had nothing to do with the fact that the people in them were black. It was easy to just look at the projects and think “look at those black people.” It unsettled their worldview, which of course was extremely narrow.

Now, why would it upset my black brothers and sisters? Well, if it were true, they could not hang all of their hat on racism. If there was an identical group of people on the other side of the world living exactly like them and they were all white, where would racism fit in? How would you explain the large percentage of young children growing up with multiple half brothers and sisters? How to explain drug addiction and crime and generation poverty? It is exactly that, it is generational poverty for the most part. America has the added complication of its slave history, its original sin if you like. Can you escape a housing scheme? Yes, but it is very difficult to do. Even if there were opportunities like there are in America, the psychological hurdles that have to be overcome are enormous. The same would apply to any young black boy or girl who has been raised in the projects. It is not just a matter of pulling your socks up, it goes so much deeper than that and if you were not raised in these situations you would not understand. People who are raised in projects and schemes know that for whatever reason, they are shark infested waters. Predators abound and it can often be survival of the fittest. It is the predators and the sharks who do the looting.

So, how did I do it? Well I became a born again Christian at the age of 26. I was changed from the inside out. The thousands of wires that were crossed in my head, Jesus began to uncross them. Jesus is the solution for the projects, the schemes and the world. He deals with the inner man first and foremost. He gives worth to each person He saves. He deals with the fears and the insecurities. He gives a person confidence. They are able to do things they never thought they could do because they know He is with them. Maybe that would be walking through the doors of a community college even although no member of you family has ever been to college. He changes out hearts so we are no longer sleeping around and having children out of wedlock. We are no longer drinking and drugging away the little resources we have. The little resources we have when we come to Jesus become seed. We plant what we have and the Lord gives the increase.

And little by little we begin to ascend the steep valley walls of generational poverty and destruction. It is Jesus who free climbs above us and throws a rope back down to us. He is our forerunner. What He has done for His people, His genuine people, is to break generational chains of sin and slavery. And when those chains are broken the snares of generational poverty are broken and we are set free. Only in Jesus white man. Only in Jesus black man. This is not the freedom the world offers, for what the world gives it can take away, consider Jim Crow. No, this is the freedom wrought on Calvary that no man can take from me. No power on earth can wrestle this freedom away from me. They cannot beat it out of me or kill it out of me for it is eternal and God given. And when the Lord Jesus frees you into this realm then and only then can you say this and have it be true There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.(Gal 3:28) And might I add that in this Kingdom of God there is neither black nor white, yellow or brown. Just children of God, one in Christ. And it is this oneness and unity that the devil hates more than anything. He will rage against it and divide us and his end is to destroy us.

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