Thinking the Unthought: To White People

by Jonas Weaver

[Very brief, altogether insufficient thoughts…but I needed to put them down somewhere.]


Kendrick Lamar raises an important question that we as white folks in America would do well to start asking: “You hate me don’t you? You hate my people, your plan is to terminate my culture.” It’s a hard question, a question that needs asking, that needs to be dealt with. Thinking the unthought, seeing the unfelt in our hearts, the unacknowledged. Do we hate black people?

Do we?

The heart is deceitful above all things according to Jeremiah. Let’s not abstract that. Let’s face our reality as white Christians: that we say racism is evil all the while reifying white supremacy. It’s easy for us to condemn the terrorist act in Charleston and say we’re not racist but we still support the police officers who murder black people in the streets, we still partake in systems that are unjust. We are complicit. Our hearts deceive us and we deceive ourselves.

White silence is privilege, is complicity. I don’t really have words for how to deal with the continued destruction and disregard for black bodies in America. In the words of Fred Moten, “What I need you to realize, motherfucker, is this shit is killing us both?”

White supremacy that remains unthought by white Christians kills black bodies.

White supremacy that remains unacknowledged in our hearts destroys us and makes it easy to seek pat answers and pray.

Justice is too general. How about, as a dear friend said, “Stop killing black people.”

Affirm black life.

Affirm your complicity.

Acknowledge your guilt in your silence.

And start asking if you actually hate black life?