The “Wright” response.

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Reverend Jeremiah Wright has recently made national news with his inflammatory comments, and in the process has introduced America to the phrase “Liberation Theology.” What is Liberation Theology? Is it a new Gospel? Is it comparable to any other theology? This phrase and the philosophy behind it are the remnants of the 1960s Civil Rights Movement. Its logical place would be the black church.

The Civil Rights Movement had to begin in the black church because that was where all past organization and motivation for oppressed black people came from. On the plantation, one of the few places for blacks to meet without being watched by white slave managers was Sunday morning church service.  It was also where slaves could have leaders that they chose instead of those chosen by Master. The preacher was one of the few slaves who could approach Master on behalf of other slaves to address grievances.

Thus, the slave preacher was usually in the forefront of the Underground Railroad Movement. He  coordinated with other Christians from the North based upon a common faith and a common theology. Christians like Harriett Beecher Stowe, John Brown, the Quaker church, and the Wesleyan Church worked with Christians like Harriett Tubman to publicly denounce slavery and help slaves escape. On the other hand, you also had the militant slave preachers like Denmark Vesey and Nat Turner who lead revolts and rebellions.

It was a Christian movement which eventually pushed this country to tear itself apart to end the institution of slavery. Then came discrimination as “Separate but equal”, and again, it was the Christian church that lead the way with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., the Christian Leadership Conference, and the thousands of black churches in black communities throughout America organizing, educating, and strategizing to confront this threat to liberty and dignity.

I was a young man in the 1960s, and while I serving in the Navy a white racist shipmate dropped 2,800 pounds of metal on me in an attempt to kill me. I became permanently disabled and continue to face physical struggles. I went through radical and angry responses and found a solution which worked for me and may work for the rest of America. It was racial forgiveness. Not racial “restoration” and not “liberation theology. It was an old theology called “Forgiveness.” As a Christian, what other resolution was there? What other response could I give?

I could have demanded an apology, special treatment, or punishment for the perpetrator. However, if I demanded anything from anyone, I would be dependent upon them. If I was going to be free, I would have to act like a free man. First, I had to totally forgive the hatred and attempted murder. I had to forgive whatever contributing factor I placed upon my country and white people. The real “Liberation Theology” was not new; it was very old – it was the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

The “New Civil Rights Movement” has hijacked the Gospel and twisted it to suit themselves. They have taken the philosophy of forgiveness and turned it into a total acceptance of every lifestyle and belief system possible. They have developed a new philosophy called “Tolerance”, meaning to hold everyone’s beliefs to equal standing with your own beliefs. Not just acceptance of others’ right to hold different beliefs, this new philosophy of Tolerance requires you to view their beliefs as of equal value to yours. It requires a change in your beliefs to tolerate others. This requires you to have no beliefs.

So, Reverend Wright can be a Christian minister and accept beliefs of Farrakhan as equal to his Christian beliefs. He can accept abortions as equal to his Christian faith, and he can believe poverty is caused by government action not individual action.

Reverend Wright could build a great church because the masses love to be taken care of and his passion for their plight gives them hope. I found that real hope lies in the total forgiveness of my Christian faith, and it has truly liberated me from the anger, frustration, and hatred of the past. I went on with my life and have achieved some levels of success, especially in my Christian walk. So, I do not need a Black Liberation Theology. I no longer belong to the black race; I belong to the race of Christ.

I was blessed when Dr. D. James Kennedy produced a biography of my life for his television program, “The Coral Ridge Hour.” It highlights my struggle with the anger and how I found complete release. As this nation struggles with past and present wrongs, this message may help us all adjust. Instead of punishment, reparation, or guilt, let’s try forgiveness.

In the 1940s black men and white men (like Reverend Wright) went to war to fight for the freedom of others, and then came back to America to face discrimination at home. White and black people joined hands again for a new push for civil rights. They took down Poll Taxes, fought against illiteracy, and again, worked for the dignity of all men.

This was the era of Reverend Wright. He and I grew up in the middle of that America, and it formed our views of America. I also joined the military, I also faced open hostility from white America, and I also went on to a radical response to that hostility. However, I came to a profoundly different conclusion about my country and the proper response to these problems. The fight for freedom was just, but the response to being free has not always been justified.

Once World War II ended, the “war industry” disassembled and returned to the actions of community building. People went back to their lives and began to build families, culture, and careers. However, when the Civil Rights Era of the 1960s and 1970s was won, the Civil Rights “industry” did not disassemble, but redirected itself to other areas because there is a lot of money, influence, and power in addressing “problems.” So, Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Louis Farrakhan, and the others could not maintain their status as advocates for the MOVEMENT unless the movement continued. You will never see them celebrate the achievements of America. You will never hear them praise the accomplishments of the individual. Furthermore, you cannot expect them to acknowledge the great progress America has made in racial equality. They are crisis managers, so they cannot get paid if there are no crises.

After the Civil War, 360,000 white men had been killed on the Union side. They died fighting their brothers and cousins to free strangers. That was the original “apology for slavery” everyone is crying for today. Those that remained alive returned home and started families while the former slaves dealt with the newness of freedom. Slaves did not blame America for slavery, and despite today’s call for “forty acres and a mule”, most blacks did not expect much from the government. The call for Civil Rights was a call for personal freedom and protection, not government control and management. I did not fight for the right to be managed by America; I fought for my God-given right to participate in the America dream.

To view the Coral Ridge Hour program featuring Mason Weaver, see “The Power of Forgiveness” on my web sight http://americanbeliefs.com/media.html

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9 thoughts on “The “Wright” response.

    avisnubia said:
    May 2, 2008 at 3:07 pm

    Hi Mason,

    The issue with Reverend Wright is forgiveness, but moreover its self-reflection, correction and a new direction. Reverend Wright is angry as is his entire congregation and others like it because the black community after the Civil Rights movement banked on white guilt and kindness to make-up for all the injustices. This is where we get two generations of entitlements from. We are the only community who insists our kids continue to be educated in inadequate schools run by people who don’t live in these kids neighborhoods, understand these kids life direction or plight AND DON’T care because their kids are safely tucked away in a suburban or private school. We let our “salvation” rest on the backs of whites (liberals) because they promised to take care of us. And now that they aren’t interested anymore, Reverend Wright and others are angry. Rightfully so, we were duped in the 1960’s and 1970’s into thinking the good times would last forever. We had to actually make our own way in the 1980’s but then Clinton “the first black president” made the plantation rich and fertile and welcomed us back to the white father (government) and we went. Being angry at white people or America is a lazy way to run your life. Historically no government has taken care of their people like this government has, AND frankly its not their job. We are the only community with our hands constantly out YET doing each other dirty on the side. Is it any wonder there hasn’t been another Martin Luther King Jr.? HE actually led us as a group to be self-sufficient, not beg for scraps from guilty liberals.
    Obama messed this up royally. His answer from the beginning should have been, “Yes, I know this man and at one time in my life I felt like this man. I understand why he’s angry and even though I’m not angry anymore, I get it. There are a lot of people who see America the way he does and I’m the only candidate whose been where he is and come out on top. I’m also the only candidate who can handle people who are angry like this…Clinton and McCain haven’t a clue as to how to deal with these people who feel American has forgotten and slighted them. INow if I can handle American’s inner hidden anger, don’t you think I can take on our enemies in other countries? How’s THAT for experience?” But no, he threw the man under the bus and ran away from him. What does that say about the black community? We can be and are divided against ourselves. Sad, sad, sad.

    tex2 said:
    May 2, 2008 at 4:18 pm

    Mason,

    Why don’t high quality, thoughtful, and intelligent people like you run for President?

    I would vote for you in a heartbeat.

    djpreacherman said:
    May 2, 2008 at 5:07 pm

    Mason,

    I am in agreement with you as it relates to the issues and information posted in this blog.

    avisnubia said:
    May 3, 2008 at 1:27 am

    I couldn’t run for president. Apparently you have to be some kind of lawyer and I definitely can’t be a lawyer…I have a soul, so that disqualifies me.

    tex2 said:
    May 4, 2008 at 12:17 am

    avisnubia,

    Not true. In the recent past:

    Ronald Reagan was a economics/sociology major.

    George H.W. Bush also an economics major.

    George W. Bush was a history major, and first President to have an MBA.

    John McCain graduated from the US Naval Academy and later the War College, I couldn’t find his major but doubt he is a lawyer. We can only hope the neither of the other 2 clowns gets elected. By the way, they are both lawyers, just like the guy who made the word “lewinsky” mean something very different than a last name. I’m sure her parents and all others with that last name are VERY proud.

    http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=lewinsky

    Even Jimmy Carter was a physics major.

    tex2 said:
    May 4, 2008 at 12:24 am

    By the way, I used to think like you do about lawyers, but have learned they are pitted against each other in an intentionally confrontational setting.

    This is necessary, because if the courts required both sides to be “nice”, one side would take advantage of the other and produce an outcome less than fair.

    There are rules they have to follow, but the rules are minimal, on the order of boxing rules, no punching the back of the head, genital area, or biting (ala Mike Tyson).

    In other words, they are just doing their job. But if you have a good lawyer joke, I’m open!

    masonweaver responded:
    May 6, 2008 at 5:43 am

    It seems like America is asleep. No one wishes to judge anymore. We have been convinced that it is unholy to make a determination about character so we have lost our character.

    When I travel the world I find Germans in Germany, Japanese in Japan and Haitians in Haiti but for some reason I cannot find an American in America. I can find “African-Americans” or “Hispanic Americans” even “Native Americans.” On the 2000 Census form you were asked for your “nationality” and there were no blocks for “American.” This is what we have come too.

    tex2 said:
    May 7, 2008 at 4:22 am

    I’m not asleep. I’ll be happy to judge. Not to be judgemental, but to call it as it is. There are still Americans, and we don’t need huge numbers to turn the situation around. I’m not sure who said it, but the phrase “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” doesn’t say you need a majority of good men. There are numerous Biblical stories of a single person overcoming overwhelming odds.

    I think part of the problem is the definition of what being Christ-like means. It has become soft and wimpy, but Jesus wasn’t. Here’s 3 situations where He was far from “meek and mild.”

    1. Jesus frequently criticized the Pharisees and Sadducees as a “brood of vipers,” “hypocrits”, etc., even though He knew He was signing his own death sentence in doing so. Christ often answered the Jewish “leadership” questions that were meant to entrap Him in such a way as to frustrate them to the point of wanting to kill him, because He made them look foolish in front of the people.

    2. When Jesus saw the money changers cheating the people and those selling sacrificial animals making a carnival out of the process, Jesus turned over the tables, spilling money and animals/cages all over the temple, then chased them out.

    3. When Christ’s disciples pushed the children away, He was “indignant” and told them unless they have faith as a child, they would not be welcome in heaven.

    What do these 3 have in common? They all involve small numbers of people over-extending their authority to take advantage of a larger group, in one way or another. In contrast, when a large number of people were about to punish a prostitute by stoning her to death in accordance with Jewish Law, He calmly pointed out their error and they walked away. Therefore, Christ taught it is not only allowed, but proper, to be angry in some circumstances, as long as we don’t sin while angry.

    Ephesians 4:26 — “Be angry but do not sin.”

    tex2 said:
    May 8, 2008 at 2:14 pm

    I take back my endorsement in response #2.

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