We see it everywhere. Thanks to Corporate America, mainstream media, so-called civil rights groups, academia and a relevance-worshipping Church, we are a nation increasingly judging one another and separating ourselves by the color of our skin. We’re surrounded by marketing that elevates one group while excoriating another. It’s okay, we’re told. It’s all in a day’s work toward “diversity” and “inclusion.”
Funny thing how so many get excluded in those pursuits. Racism is evil. Exploiting it, marketing it, and expanding it is too.
The racial messaging is loud and clear: if you’re not the right hue, there’s obviously something wrong with you. And those reminders are relentless. From Hollywood babble to pandering politicians to Big Tech Tyrants to Institutions of Higher Mislearning to euphemistic bridges to nowhere in woke churches, we’re barraged by an unending stream of color conscious craziness that demands society sees hue before they see you.
As with all things rooted in human frailty, today’s celebrated form of segregation is immensely profitable, especially for those peddling the victimhood. There’s no scarcity of New York Times bestselling authors reminding us to define ourselves by our “whiteness” or “blackness,” and to assess every situation, every word, every interaction with others through the broken narratives of Critical Race Theory. It’s exhausting. That’s not living.
At every turn we’re being commanded to check our color, check our privilege, check our to-do-lists of guilt-oriented tasks. Corporate America has taken genuflection to a whole new low. Remember when Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy got on his knees and started shining hip-hop artist Lecrae’s shoes in a seriously cringey display of reconciliation-gone-wrong? He told other white people to do the same. If you ever try to shine my shoes, I will kick you. I repeat. I. Will. Kick. You. This doesn’t erase racism. This doesn’t change the past. This just makes someone feel really uncomfortable.
Guilt is a powerful thing. And when it’s coupled with racism, it’s a cash cow, especially for the groups that rely on victim evangelism. The Black Lives Matter movement raked in millions while cities and businesses burned last summer. The NAACP, in full denial of the massive violence and destruction wrought by many #BLM “peaceful protests,” was the recipient of millions more in pledges from Corporate America.
Apple has turned up the volume on its social justice rhetoric with its Racial Equity and Justice Initiative and its “Black Unity” branded watch. Why not a “Unity” collection that celebrates us all? Never mind these same corporations closed and boarded up their businesses to protect their assets during BLM protests. They sent out press releases that sounded like an abused spouse making excuses for the abuser.
Taxpayers get to be force-fed the Cult of Neo-Segregation even in our museums. Remember when the Smithsonian posted an infographic about “whiteness” and “white culture” claiming that having a “protestant work ethic” was a “white thing.” So, as someone with brown skin, I don’t believe in working hard? The Smithsonian got fierce pushback and removed the infographic, but (of course) kept the racist “whiteness” section on their website.
We’re siloing, and it’s toxic. I’m all about expressions of diversity and learning others’ cultures. We are a beautifully diverse nation, and that diversity exists even within the same shades of pigmentation. But we don’t make up for the suppression of some cultures by demonizing everyone else. We don’t bring people together by constantly obsessing over our hues, our past, and our assumed “privileges.”
I’m all about addressing inequality…real inequality. I’m all about taking steps to dismantle systemic racism where and when it actually occurs (let’s start with Planned Parenthood —the leading killer of black lives). I’m all about criminal justice reform and law enforcement accountability, but I won’t embrace a lie (BLM, CRT, DNC) to achieve it. I’m all about more healthy dialogue, more relationships and more unity around the fact that we’re one human race.
I’m not about living in the past. I’m not about mainstream media’s and academia’s revisions of the past. And I’m not about a mindset that certain people can never escape the past. Thank goodness this doesn’t apply to us in the spiritual sense. We’re forgiven by a God who loves us and redeems our past. But a broken worldview wants us to hold someone responsible for something they may or may not have done. Some want perpetual penance for wrongs someone’s ancestors have committed.
Are we responsible for the crimes of even our parents? Am I responsible for the crime of my biological father because I was conceived in rape? Too many times the past is weaponized and used to justify present behavior. If African-Americans, who lived in the horrific oppression of slavery, could forgive and move forward, what’s holding our modern society back?
The Civil Rights Act of 1871 (aka the Ku Klux Klan Act) was a piece of legislation that addressed the horrific KKK violence that terrorized black Americans and their white allies. No surprise, but zero Democrats in the House and Senate voted for the bill. A group of African-American Congressman (they were all Republicans) had a profound take on the legislation which alarmingly allowed pardons for former Confederates. The trailblazer legislators were Senator Hiram Revels and Representatives Robert Elliott, Robert De Large, Benjamin Turner and Joseph Rainey — all born into slavery. They proclaimed: “We have open and frank hearts toward those who were our oppressors and taskmasters. We foster no enmity now, and we desire to foster none for their act in the past to us, nor to the Government we love so well.”
We have a lot to learn from our past. But the most powerful lesson that benefits all of us, regardless of our beautiful hues, is how (especially as Christians) we can choose to have a more loving, more forgiving and more unified future.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Ryan Bomberger is the Chief Creative Officer and co-founder of The Radiance Foundation. He is happily married to his best friend, Bethany, who is the Executive Director of Radiance. They are adoptive parents with four awesome kiddos. Ryan is an Emmy Award-winning creative professional, factivist, international public speaker and author of NOT EQUAL: CIVIL RIGHTS GONE WRONG. He loves illuminating that every human life has purpose.