It’s important to not remove history because the same dysfunction will repeat itself. It is also equally as important to not use a platform to spew hate in the name of love, just because you can, especially if you are a teacher or preacher. There are far more people who are qualified to speak truth but never get heard because they don’t kiss enough ass to preach from a pulpit. Unfortunately, the squeaky wheel always get the grease and situations like that run rampant in church, schools and government alike because they fight for their own history to be made instead of preserving truth for today.
When I was teaching in Savannah schools and the black lives matter movement was blowing up Facebook, a pastor from my hometown in Baltimore Maryland whom I knew personally, was fueling the movement of hate that trickled down the highway of his roadblocks into my classroom. He frequented my restaurant after church with a different baby-Moma while snapping his fingers and calling me cracker when I was a brand new Christian over 20 years earlier. When the kids started praising a black pastor for standing up for their rights, my mind went directly back to the disrespect he had for me as his server. He was smearing God’s reputation by mixing his own into another agenda of seeming righteous while cloaked with the same racism he shut down I-83 over. Was it a coincidence that my experiences in two different cities placed me as the only white girl in churches and schools where I chose to be the minority? Of course not. My hope was to work with teens and dismantle lies promoted by any person with spiritual authority who could misuse it. But working in the hood made me just that, a “worker”. It wasn’t until I became apart of their everyday occurrences that I could diffuse deception promoted through media censorship and prove I wasn’t that white bitch from the North.
I served many ethnic communities in both states and was afforded ample opportunities to bridge the gap of stereotypical segregation. I found numerous occasions to educate my classes about racism crossing all color lines, but that landed me pinned down to an art table with scissors at my jugular as my wake-up moment. A slave mentality was taught to these youngsters and reinforced through the churches who stirred up skeptism against white folk, even if they were believers. The school administration didn’t realize that by dismissing my role as a substitute teacher in front of my students, they would widen the gap between impressionable minds and the Savior we were all supposed to serve.
When kids get confused from the top they assimilate it to a distant God who can’t bring peace, hence quarrels and arguments become the responsibility of the teacher who preached the message. I wasn’t allowed to speak from empathy for their minority group because they had already judged me based on their generational mindsets. If the Bible belt was able to make church-going an expectation of it’s people without regard for his fellow man, than they were functioning exactly as the politically driven churches up North. Nonetheless, I watched as billboards for blue lives matter arose in the Title-one school district only to further drive a wedge between aggressive people and the government who did the bidding of dissension for them, all under the pretense of righteousness.
I used my personal story with this “cracker calling” pastor and the raising controversies of that moment, to teach about standing firm on a foundation of faith that does not see lack in anything. In Heaven we all are significant and don’t need to raise a fuss for proof of it. I guess we can soon expect that freedom of speech will be censored from all angles because social media has already banned truth as offensive, yet allows picketing of opinions to pepper our news feeds. But this letter wasn’t written by me, I only pass it along because history, although a recent past, should not be forgotten. Four years after all of his mess, this same pastor, Jamal Bryant has migrated to Atlanta which I now call my new home. Coincidence? Hardly, because down here he can perpetuate stand offs and blockade highways with much more ammunition because he has sought and found the same biased spirit. But make no mistake, there is not an ounce of truth or love in any person who professes Christ yet hates his brother or sister.
It’s important to not remove history because the same dysfunction will repeat itself. It is also equally as important to not use a platform to spew hate in the name of love, just because you can, especially if you are a teacher or a preacher. There are far more people who are qualified to speak truth but never get heard because they don’t kiss enough ass to preach from a pulpit. Unfortunately, the squeaky wheel always get the grease and situations like that run rampant in church, schools and government alike because they fight for their own history to be made instead of preserving truth for today.
Bravo to the one who wrote the following letter.
A LETTER TO PASTOR JAMAL BRYANT:
So Pastor Jamal Bryant, you decided to hold a Tuesday morning protest that enabled you to create early morning gridlock during the morning rush hour.
So not only are the residents of Baltimore dodging bullets, we are now dodging protesters while trying to get to work. Oh yes, I come in on either 295 or the 395 corridor and I live in Baltimore City. Not to mention all those people commuting trying to get critical care and those who had appointments that took months to get. All of this for what?
To protest the funds, (60 million dollars) for the new Juvenile Justice Facility of which you feel 11 million of those funds should be allocated to the public school system.
Pastor Bryant, you said you wanted those folk commuting into Baltimore yesterday to know how it feels to be Black by waiting in your manufactured gridlock. NEWS FLASH!…I’m BLACK.
Governor L. Hogan just took office in January and the last time I did my math, it went like this,
About 7yrs ago, the Baltimore Public School System was missing 54 million dollars. No audit, disclosure or accountability was given to the citizens and to this day, it’s still a mystery.
About 4 or 5 yrs ago city services were cut, employees were furloughed, water bills sky rocketed.
Then there was the Indy Lights Race Series that left town with our furlough money to make up for the 12 million dollars that turned up missing and to this day, no explanation or investigation by anyone in City government regarding what happen to the money, and to this day, it’s still a mystery.
And now, a 60 million dollar deficit at the beginning of the year in the School Budget, oh and let’s not forget the “1.8 BILLION DOLLAR STIMULUS PACKAGE” Baltimore received 2yrs ago, let me guess where those funds went, oh it’s still a mystery. Seems to me your picking on the wrong….. as you would put it, “FOLK”.
Here’s the questions you should be asking,
Where are all these funds,
Why are they not being addressed,
Who’s responsible for their allocation,
Why hasn’t the City had an audit,
Why no request for criminal investigations,
What happen to the LOTTERY AND CASINO SCHOOL FUNDS WE HEARD SO MUCH ABOUT PRIOR TO ENACTING THESE PROJECTS?
And finally, is this the reason uptown Baltimore in part looks like this?
Who’s stealing our hard earned tax dollars in Baltimore City, I believe this is one of several reasons why we have civil unrest in our City.
Pastor, the next time you pick a fight, make sure your in the ring with the right opponent.
Please share for our uninformed citizens,
And so history goes on with heightened movements, picketing, marches, initiatives and angry outbursts from those with enough clout to make a stink. Before long anyone who professes to be a Christian will either have had to sell his soul to the devil of compromise, or deny his heartfelt beliefs out of fear for being judged as one who hates all the loud people groups who demand to be heard yet only love those who think like them. And I will prepare for moments to face hostility simply because the expression of my beliefs is demonized. But, I will go down in history for standing on love that understands all people have a personal experience that attributes to their mistrust in me because of my faith, and I will let them. It’s not me they don’t take time to understand anyway, it’s God.