Lip Service

From “US: The Resurrection of American Terror” by Rev. Kenneth W. Wheeler

After every Racial Awareness Sunday, I would go back to my community on the far northwest side of Milwaukee. And the white members would return to their lives, where they would rarely come in contact with a person of color. In their everyday lives these white members would not have to think about Black people.

Eventually, I decided not to continue participating in these Racial Awareness events. I came to realize how empty they were. I knew they would not lead to anything of substance. Along with many people of color, I saw this event as simply a white Church giving lip service to an issue that needed full-bodied participation and engagement from white Christians. I was frustrated. The minimal amount of time given for talking about racism suggested that the Church was not at all serious about engaging with the problem in a meaningful way. These events worked to minimize a monumental, urgent, and necessary issue for the white Church, in particular, to be addressing.