Andre E. Johnson Profile picture
Mar 9, 2018 11 tweets 4 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
There is much buzz going on on social media about this story published by @nytimes:…. The better title may have been "Black Folks get Woke on #WhiteEvangelical churches and Leave.
So I will take time out of my writing schedule for today to comment on this story. First, much love to the people who shared their stories. In talking with people who found themselves in similar situations, I know it wasn't easy.
But let's be clear: #WhiteEvangelicalism is probably the number one reason people are leaving the church. It's so toxic that even Black people are not immune! It's soul crushing and damaging so much so that you don't want to attend any church.
This is what @C_Stroop gets at with his #EmptyThePews campaign. The reason why #whiteEvangelicalism is still powerful is that people still support it. "She had kept giving tithe money to Gateway for some months after she stopped going."
What this story is also about is the rhetoric racial reconciliation. @JLWeisenfeld wrote: The rhetoric of "racial reconciliation" always struck me as asking black people to reconcile to individual prejudice and not structural racism as the problem with American Christianity."
So true! I have been saying for years that the rhetoric of racial reconciliation is just another way that "whiteness" reigns. It is a deliberative attempt to cover up the foundational reason for racist thinking, beliefs, and policies. I will say more about this in another thread.
It is this understanding that would lead a white pastor of a Trumpian church to have the black members spread out and pray with white people after his sermon on "racism" and ACTUALLY be pleased with how it went.
It also shows that EVEN AFTER TALKING with his "black pastor" friends about race he can STILL say he had no problem supporting Trump and by extension, his policies.
“We were electing what we felt was the person who held the values that the church loves dearly the most. That doesn’t mean that he’s perfect. But I do believe after spending time with him that he really wants to learn, that he really wants to do a good job for all Americans."
This, of course, is not a shock to me. It is a shock to me that people can still hold #WhiteEvangelicalism as the moral exemplar and be SHOCKED that they supported and still support Trump.
For people who are still in those churches, #EmptyThePews. And for black folks who are still there, #GetOut because #WhiteChurchQuiet!

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More from @aejohnsonphd

Jun 23, 2018
For the past 10 years, conservatives have consistently told us what they would do if they were elected. They did not try to hide what they would do. And for this, WE constantly rewarded them with elected office. The question is will WE rewarded again in November?
I remember when elected officials LOST their congressional seats because they tried to PROVIDE people with health care. Conservatives ran on destroying health care and WON!
When people try to do what the majority of the country SAY they want, they seem to lose. When folks promote immoral policies and "sound tough" WE seem to elect them.
Read 4 tweets
Mar 10, 2018
Okay, I feel like another twitter thread. So here goes. I am still thinking about the article in the @nytimes on Black people leaving white churches as I prepare for a keynote address at the conference on Communication ethics.…
While the story centers on Black people trying to find a home in largely white congregations and eventually leaving, @JLWeisenfeld noted that this is also a story about racial reconciliation.
Anybody who has read any of my work or followed me on Twitter know that I am HIGHLY skeptical of the term "racial reconciliation." here me though; I have no problem with reconciliation. I do believe people can be reconciled.
Read 11 tweets
Jan 24, 2018
Okay, I am back to this wonderful thread on forgiveness. First, @Pastor_Earle and I have a soon to be published chapter on the subject in an upcoming book on the #CharlestonMassacre.
Basically, in the chapter, we titled, “But, I Forgive You?”: Mother Emanuel, Black Pain and the Rhetoric of Forgiveness," we examine the rhetoric of forgiveness and how forgiveness, as a trope, performs in public when expressed through black pain.
We maintained that the wider public not only expects a rhetoric of forgiveness when racial ghosts of the past (and present) manifest in ways that cause black pain but families must offer the forgiveness in non-threatening and expeditiously ways that eases public consciences.
Read 17 tweets

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