So this isn’t a thing…?
So this isn’t a thing right? What makes a thing a thing?
What do I mean, you may ask? How many people have to tell you they have experienced something? How many people have to tell you that they have gone through something before you take their word for it? Climate change, vaccinations, …Even belief in God himself.
No matter what, sometimes people just won’t believe no matter how much information, facts, and testimonies are presented to them. There are countless studies, stories, speeches, even pictures showing the impact of climate change. However due to personal bias, political leaning, root culture, or whatever millions of people refuse to believe it even exists. We see a similar bias on the other issues I previously stated.
Another issue that unfortunately gets this treatment, is one of the issues that makes everyone uncomfortable… racial supremacy. See didn’t it make you a little uncomfortable?
Now my point here is not to make you uncomfortable (I do want you to continue reading). Rather, my point is to show how we don’t apply our convictions with equity.
THIS IS NOWHERE MORE EVIDENT THAN WITH CHRISTIANS IN THE WEST.
Now my point here is not to overwhelm you with historical facts. Any adult with any kind of education or experience can see how complicit Christianity was in the spread of racial supremacy. And even in the slight chance that you don’t, all you have to do is go to a computer and so some internet research.
What I’d like to explore just a bit is your comfort level right now, and why you’re SO uncomfortable at this point.
I’D LIKE TO PRESENT TO YOU THE CONCEPT OF SELECTIVE SKEPTICISM AND INFORMATION AVOIDANCE
Let’s start with information avoidance, it’s logically the first of the 2 that takes place. What is it you might ask? Well, if it isn’t self-explanatory already, it’s basically how people select their own reality by deliberately avoiding information that threatens their happiness and wellbeing. **
In “The age of information” most of us avoid much of it. For example, people on a diet don’t want to count calories if they’re cheating on dessert, people who are ill can tend to avoid certain screenings. This is most evident in how most people consume their news. In the United States it is almost guaranteed the source will align with their political ideology. Essentially, when we don’t want to talk about or even hear about a particular topic or issue we completely remove it from our spheres. But not only that, we then proceed to ‘actively avoid’ it (see how I brought it back around there).
Now for selective skepticism. In order to adequately unpack this, we must first realize that there is no such thing as a consistent skeptic. Selective skepticism is a kind of bias, and we are all biased to some degree. It is a bias that is not applied equally in every situation.
SO WHAT’S THE POINT OF THIS?
The problem is we are all guilty of this. Which is why it’s still astonishing to me when Christians get dismissive and defensive when confronted with the idea that racial supremacy is a thing. Human beings are inherently prejudice (again this is something that has been well researched, and I’m not here to rehash this particular point) so we should not be shocked when another identifies a particular aspect of our bias. Unfortunately, we are usually blind to this. It’s spoken about in the Bible:
“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”
We have the tendency to be blind to our own biases. Now if one who is out to do us harm point out our inconsistencies I can understand us being defensive. But when our brother’s & sisters point out an issue, especially if it’s something that we are blind to, we should be open to listen to them.
Racial supremacy is a thing! Many of us are still living within its context, and suffer from its impact. Rather than being dismissive and defensive we should seek to bear on another’s burdens (Galatians 6:2)
Lastly, I’d like to submit for you to consider the reason why we’re blind to things like racial supremacy. They are part of our root culture. Root culture are the core things that make up who we are. They are subtle, and disguise themselves as part of our souls. So unfortunately we don’t even recognize that they don’t belong there. When Paul writes in Romans 12 that we are to renew our mind, don’t just limit it to sinful acts (fornication, adultery, murder, etc). But look to apply this understanding to the subtler aspects of our souls (racial prejudice, pride, arrogance, greed, etc). I believe if we open ourselves up to approaching things in this way we’ll begin to feel more comfortable when we read articles about racial supremacy.
**Carnegie Mellon Article March 17, 2018 “Information Avoidance: How People Select Their Own Reality”