A friend posted a link to the blog of one of our UM bishops. The good bishop was writing about lingering racism -- especially against Native Americans (hey, it's Thanksgiving) -- then went on to address Ferguson, white privilege, and the need for ongoing repentance by the church and by society in general (or maybe only the white majority). It was well-written and there was much there I agreed with, but at the foot of the webpage stood this message:
Sorry, Comments are Closed.
Now, I understand that the bishop or the webmaster probably feared starting an internet flame war that would be wearisome and counterproductive. That's often the result of any strong opinion being aired online. But how can you presume to lecture others on their failings and the need to repent and not
allow for comments? The overall effect is to say, "I'm not really interested in what you have to say, I just want to tell you all to shape up."
There are so many people who have called us to "a conversation about race," or who have otherwise pronounced (or merely denounced) upon the subject of racism in American society or the church who seem to be uninterested in what anyone else has to say. But how can we have a conversation when only one side does the talking?