The Eerie Evangelical Silence Over Trayvon Martin’s Murder
Speaking for no one but myself, I make a concerted effort to speak/write with something of a prophetic, i.e. forthtelling, voice into the church and public sphere.11.This blog evidences that on a regular basis. Yet I try to keep in tension passion with discernment, truth with civility. At the same time, having spent all of last week on the Baylor Civil Rights bus tour of the South, I presently have a heightened awareness about civil rights issues and cultural milieu surrounding the murder of Trayvon Martin.22.Which I hope will never wear off.
The reason I’ve largely been silent until now is that I don’t know, and can’t seem to find, the reliable facts. And it’s not for lack of looking. I simply don’t know enough to not speak out of my ass.33.I make a concerted effort not to shoot first and ask questions later, which seems an oddly appropriate approach and metaphor. This, I fear, is not the motivation behind the deafening silence of most American evangelicalism on this issue, though. At best it seems to be a case of out of sight, out of mind. At worst it’s an exhibition of the lingering institutional racism that pervades American society. Either way, our failure as evangelicals to stand up against injustice is antithetical to our faith. Shame on us.
Anyway, the best I can do at this time is make a concerted effort to promote those who know what they’re talking about. Here’s a few blog posts and articles I found to be worthwhile reads:44. If you’re a white evangelical like me, I’d encourage you to read and reflect on them for a while.
- “LeBron, Wade show a courageous side” 55.Foxsports
- “The curious evangelical silence over Trayvon Martin” 66.Think Christian
- “When You Can’t Find Your Words” 77.Red Letter Christians
- “Trayvon Martin’s shooting: The ‘rules’ African American parents follow” 88.The Washington Post
Hat tip to Jason Dye for pointing out my silence. Thanks for being the Holy Spirit’s instrument for bringing conviction.
Addendum: Since publishing this post I’ve been presented with a small band of evangelicals who are address Trayvon’s murder and been validly criticized for making generalizations that are far too broad. Although I think this post remains largely correct, I’m delighted to acknowledge that the problem is not as bad as I previously supposed.