We must refuse the diversity facade

From “Silencing White Noise: Six Practices to Overcome Our Inaction on Race” by Willie Dwayne Francois III – Brazos Press

We must refuse the diversity facade in favor of power-sharing and repair first. “The Whiteness problem” necessitates more than appeals for unity and hopes for “not seeing color.” Racial repair is a process that accounts for and addresses the harm caused by racism. It leads to racial justice, and social, political, and economic equality regardless of race. Racial repair and racial justice are preludes to racial reconciliation. Racial justice paves the way for racial reconciliation. Without abolition and repair, a racial reconciliation floats in the air as an empty, intangible figment of the White imagination and a sedative deception of white noise. Before we can live in harmony and oneness, we must pursue uncomfortable race-related conversations and actions that lead to repairing the harm inflicted by racism over the past four centuries. The unity for which we long remains a farce if we retreat from the heart-convicting, emotionally tiring, soul-freeing work of reparative intercession.

In Dear White Christians: For Those Still Longing for Racial Reconciliation, Jennifer Harvey fuels my sense of a reparative framework for racial justice. As a self-identified prophetic White evangelical, Harvey uses her social location to mine the pitfalls and potentials of White evangelicalism and Whiteness in America as political ideology, religious identity, and White privilege. Harvey examines a history of mainline Protestant commitments to the question of racial justice. She distinguishes between center-left White Christians and White evangelicals – the former being committed to racial reconciliation devoid of racial equity, the latter rejecting the existence of structural racism altogether. In short, mainline White Protestants acknowledge the existence of structural racism but tend to place a premium on reconciliation and multiracial community formation, not throughgoing racial equity and reparative justice.