From England to New York, South Africa to China there is always the “Race issue” or racism. The color of one’s skin seems to be the common denominator for most of this world when it comes to social issues and the misjudging of one another. In the church you have white congregations, black congregations. The Bible several times over encourages all those who follow Christ to seek unity with diligence. With so many churches separated by race it is impossible to claim unity. Walk into the white churches and there are multiple pictures of Jesus-as a white man. During the time of Leonardo Da Vinci and other world famous artist they painted pictures of what was around them at the time, and that was Europeans. Their artwork reflected their culture at the time. There are no brown paintings of Caribbean looking woman with lots of curves, we only see Mona Lisa. The point is as beautiful as these works of art were and still are they incorrectly portray what Jesus Christ looked like. They only portray the European man painting European people.
In Rev 1:14-15 the Bible describes in detail exactly what Jesus looks like. Kinky wool hair and bronze feet. That description does not fit Da Vinci but more along the lines of an African living in the desert for many years. An afro is something that is not associated with anyone in Europe, period. So Asians, Latinos, Russians, Australians and Americans, claim to serve the same God, which happens to be a brown God. This seems to be fact so why wont the church, mainly the white church acknowledge this fact and move on? What better way to get the Worlds attention than to Petition and challenge the Pope-Pope Benedict XVI to take down any pictures of a white Jesus and replace them with the Biblical Jesus, set an example. Let the world know that the Catholic Church doesn’t care about skin color and only about breaking down color barriers so the church can finally become one. Europeans claim it doesn’t matter the color of the God they serve so put up a Jesus with an afro and facial features like Denzel Washington and let’s see how many whites attend a church service?
Let Kenneth Copeland, Pastor Rick Warren, Joel Osteen, Ed Young, and all the other white mega church leaders preach on television with a large picture of a black Jesus in the background and let’s truly see the hearts of men. If race is not an issue then the kinky hair large nosed Jesus in the background shouldn’t be a problem??
The 9/11 terror attacks are a very delicate topic as the horror of this day is deeply ingrained in all of us, especially those who saw the devastation up close right in their own backyard like myself. On September 11 I drove by the Pentagon like everyone else to get to work. Within hours, like the rest of the United States and many other parts of the world we were all changed in an instant.
The weeks, months and years following the attacks we began to learn about the amazing people who lost their lives. Children were profiled as they told their stories about their parents, mothers and fathers about their children, brothers and sisters about their siblings. While the stories were compelling and sad they never seemed to include people of color (black people). Now and then there was a blurb of someone but no first person accounts, no in-depth coverage of a beautiful life lost.
Ten years have now passed and the entire country paused, reflected and remembered those lost. Another anniversary and more stories of white people who died. At one point I thought maybe no black folk died on September 11 until I looked up the faces of the people who died, and there they were, black woman, black men, first officers and flight attendants. They were wives, husbands and no one in the media wanted to tell their story, at least not the detailed stories we saw or continue to see concerning the many whites who lost their lives on the same day.
People of color are forever looked down upon for playing the race card. Maybe we pull the card a lot but there are lots of reasons we have to and this is one of them. There is one black person whose image is ingrained in our hearts and minds forever and that is the “Falling Man”. He is an unknown man who leaped from the twin towers to certain death. During his fall, at one point he looked like Superman without a cape. In the end he died a horrific tragic death along with the other nearly three thousand people who died that day.
The only black person who died on September 11 to get extensive news coverage to this day was an unknown man, with an unknown past, and he died in one of the most dramatic ways that day. Did CNN, CBS, ABC, Fox News ask any black families for their story??? I’m just asking…
Having a biracial President has been a proud moment for a lot of us, especially African Americans. President Obama’s family instilled in him who he was and his mother exposed him to both sides of his culture, European and African. President Obama is a rarity among people of color; he understands and embraces his history. What he gained is priceless, as we see it took him to the White House. African Americans are the only ethnic race with no history, we as a people have absolutely no knowledge of where we came from and unfortunately for a lot of us we have no idea where we are going. The Bible says “My people perish for lack of Knowledge”; Hosea 4:6. I believe this scripture applies directly to people of color. We all know we came from Africa as slaves and that’s all. I enjoy attending cultural events, I love to see the Caribbean, Spanish, Italian, French etc. These people, so proud of their heritage, they wave their countries flag with such pride. They own a valuable piece of the puzzle that’s needed to live in this society, and its knowledge of their identity. My suggestion, the Federal Government can keep its reparation but pay for African Americans to get genetic testing and through this people such as myself and the other 40 million or so blacks in the US will be able to find out what part of Africa we came from, what tribes we belong to. This to me is more priceless than reparations, just ask President Obama. We have a new generation of young men and woman who lack knowledge of who they are thus making it difficult for them to move forward in life with confidence. As history has shown your past are blueprints for your future. I want to see our young people walk with a swagger of entitlement. With no identity the only swagger we will walk is the one on the corner near the liquor store. I would like to point to a place on a map and show my children, “This is your original homeland, and this is what your countries flag looks like”. Identity is powerful, and if acquired by African Americans, I believe we could have a chance to become a united race, something that has eluded blacks since slavery. We can be the modern day Jews the Bible speaks of. Don’t get me wrong reparations would be great, but giving over 40 million African Americans their identities back would be powerful. I’m just asking for congress to propose a bill called Identity 101, simply giving back what’s due to our people, our Identity.
It’s been several months since President Obama released his long form birth certificate letting the world know he is indeed a United States citizen. After the dramatic killing of Bin Laden the country moved forward and all was quickly forgotten. Before the president was forced to release his birth certificate one of the most prominent religious leaders in this country if not the world had brought into question if the President was a legitimate United States citizen or stating he was not fit to be president.
Rev. Franklin Graham, son of Rev. Billy Graham a respected evangelical church leader and advisor to numerous presidents raised the issue in an interview in which he stated “why won’t the president show us his birth certificate”. Once the president quieted his critics and just plain embarrassed some I still have not read anywhere that Rev. Franklin Graham apologized openly to President Obama. To be fair maybe Rev. Graham did apologize but he did so quietly and privately. The fact that president Obama’s skin is dark and he is considered a black man or the first black president I believe a loud public apology should have been given and is still owed.
During the time of Jim Crow black men had to walk around with “papers” on their persons so if a white person wanted to know if he were a legitimate man he could prove it. Rev. Franklin Graham is well aware of this fact since he grew up in the south where his father Rev. Billy Graham never spoke out publically on racism when Emmitt Till was murdered or when blacks were beaten and chased by dogs so they could sit down in a coffee shop. As a matter of fact the elder Graham never used his influence to help any black agenda, at least one with any significance. Rev. Franklin Graham professes Christianity founded on the teachings of Jesus Christ which encompasses forgiveness and to ask for forgiveness. Rev. Graham was wrong, dead wrong to even part his lips to insinuate that Barak Obama was somehow not a legitimate man and somehow not certified to be president.
If there was anyone to jump first to ask for forgiveness from president Obama it should have been Rev. Graham. This would have been a great opportunity to show solidarity between black and white Christians and even the general public. Rev. Graham passed on a great opportunity. The fact that he has not done so also raises the question of what is in the heart of this supposed God fearing man. He preaches weekly and travels extensively to tell the world to love and follow the Bible. According to his own walk he seems to be a talker and not a doer.