Faith and Ferguson: A Call to Action and Response to the Grand Jury’s Decision Not To Indict Darren Wilson

ss-140825-michael-brown-funeral-10_d7040a9661fb813f9d3722e742114487I awoke this morning still numbed (paralyzed even) by the pain, sorrow and defeat I saw on the faces of our black and brown people, especially our brothers and mothers of sons. I could only offer sacred silence as a refusal to desecrate their righteous despair. It stings deeply that Black America has its home at the cross with the uninvited guest of injustice. In the twenty-first century (so far from antiquity, the atlantic, the auction block, the lynching tree and the back of the bus) we are still unconsolably grieving devalued and crucified black bodies that are wrongfully considered seditious and criminal because of the color of their skin and their marginalized position within oppressive systems of power. Amid this grave miscarriage of justice and derailment of morality, I cannot help but to wonder when we will all sing together in the tenor of that old negro spiritual:

Well old Mister Satan he got mad,
Missed that soul that he thought he had,
Pharaoh’s army got drowned,
Oh Mary don’t you weep.

Brothers and sisters, don’t you cry,
There’ll be good times by and by,
Pharaoh’s army got drowned,
Oh Mary don’t you weep.

Oh Mary don’t you weep no more,
Oh Mary don’t you weep no more,
Pharaoh’s army got drowned,
Oh Mary don’t you weep.

But today, this is not our song. On the night of this inhumane and unjust decision not to indict Darren Wilson for the senseless killing of unarmed and college-bound Mike Brown, Pharaoh’s army did not drown and along with Mary, our mothers, our men and our community, we weep. I want you to know, that as Mary wept and as Rachel refused to be consoled, so do we have a place to lament. Let us lament with cries of righteous indignation and action until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness a mighty stream. We can begin our lament weeping but let us also lament with action.

CALL FOR ACTION:

I call for a tripartite plan for resistance with Political, Economic and Prophetic action. Effective resistance for these times necessitate an element of surprise to strategically disrupt power. Here is how we can achieve this end:

POLITICAL:

Please sign this petition by the NAACP that demands the Department of Justice to pursue a federal, criminal rights investigation into Michael Brown’s Death.

http://action.naacp.org/write-the-DOJ-now

ECONOMIC:

On Black Friday, let us act with our dollars. Do not spend money to buy merchandise. Here is why:

“Several stores along South Florissant Road in Ferguson, where protests have continued on a near-nightly basis, say that their business is down nearly 80 percent since August. Many retailers, including restaurants, nail salons and grocery stores, have been forced to close early in the last few months. Some said they had cut their employees’ hours because there was so little for them to do.

Now, with the grand jury’s decision on whether to indict Officer Wilson expected any day, businesses fear that another round of demonstrations will disrupt the holiday shopping season and its opening day, Black Friday, so named for the first time retailers traditionally show a profit, or move into the black, for the year” (New York Times, November 20th at http://nyti.ms/1r2qSuo).

Thus, let us empty the pockets of capitalism and show why the defaulted promissory note of justice is a debt to us all!

PROPHETIC:

May we “stay woke” to injustice. Prophetic action requires that we are intentional about incorporating our indignation into liturgy, bible studies, prayers, sermons, meetings and agendas. Justice is a biblical mandate and serving the least of these is the locus of Jesus’ ministry and also the imperative of discipleship. In Luke 4:18, Jesus makes this his first priority as he announces his earthly ministry. He read from the scrolls of Isaiah saying:

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, 19to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” 20And he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. 21Then he began to say to them, “Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.”

Dearly beloved, a year of favor and the fulfillment of scripture may very well depend on our political, economic and prophetic action. Let us show up in numbers and prove that black lives matter. May we surprise capitalism and capitol hill, white supremacy and politics of respectability with our resistance and disruption of oppressive system of sacrifice that scapegoats black and brown bodies.

In the words of WEB Dubois,

“But we do not merely protest; we make renewed demand for freedom in that vast kingdom of the human spirit where freedom has ever had the right to dwell: the expressing of thought to unstuffed ears; the dreaming of dreams by untwisted souls.”

Today, let us protest with renewed demands for freedom! Let us walk together children and not grow weary. Let us continue looking toward Jerusalem with our hands to the gospel plow and refuse to turn back. Let us keep dreaming in color because black lives matter

With lamentation and hope for justice,
Reverend Daughter
http://www.reverenddaughter.com

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