Huckabee: Ya’ll Need Jesus to Stop Being Racist

Okay folks, you can stop talking about racial inequality now. Mike Huckabee has it all figured out. You don’t need to work on public policy to reduce institutional racism or promote equality. You don’t have to work together to overcome society’s racial biases. Ya’ll just need to get right with Jesus.

Now that South Carolina leaders had called to take down the flag, Huckabee said that he agreed with the decision.

“I keep hearing people saying we need more conversations about race,” the former Arkansas governor opined. “Actually we don’t need more conversations. What we need is conversions because the reconciliations that changes people is not a racial reconciliation, it’s a spiritual reconciliation when people are reconciled to God.”

“When I love God and I know that God created other people regardless of their color as much as he made me, I don’t have a problem with racism,” Huckabee insisted.

The candidate concluded: “It’s solved!”

So there you go. Solved! Done! Let’s all just sing some hymns and call it a day. But wait, a couple thoughts are bubbling up. Like the fact that racism was most pervasive in this country when Christianity was the virtually exclusive religion for Americans. And that slaveholders actually converted their slaves to Christianity because they thought it would make them more docile. And the fact that the Bible was used to justify slavery, and for good reason — there are all kinds of verses endorsing slavery and not a single one opposing it. And that the people who are most racist in this country are almost unanimously Christian.

I guess Huckabee’s idea isn’t such a good one after all. I guess this will take actually effort to overcome, effort that Huckabee certainly has no intention of exerting.

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  • cptdoom

    Let me get this straight. A man who became an ordained Southern Baptist minister in the early/mid 1970s, when the denomination was still officially racist (something it would not change until the early 1990s) , and must have known its long history of supporting slavery and segregation when he joined, is now saying that just embracing Jesus instantly makes you non-racist. Can you even call something this outrageous ironic?

  • http://www.thelosersleague.com theschwa

    And that the people who are most racist in this country are almost unanimously Christian.

    Huckbee: “Correction: We need more Jesus so we can stop TALKING about racism. It’s solved!”

  • Die Anyway

    Two anecdotes about my experience with Christianity and race:

    In the ’60s I was in my teens and still involved with church-going. Around the ’62-’63 timeframe I was living in Havelock, N.C. and attending the Presbyterian church. The civil rights movement was growing and the church members were discussing what to do if a black family tried to enter the church. Solutions ranged from locking the door to everyone getting up and walking out. I don’t recall that greeting them with Christian fellowship was a viable option. By 1964 I had moved to Pensacola, FL and was attending a Presbyterian church there. The adult couple that sponsored the teen youth group would hold the weekly meeting at their home. At one point they discussed what they would do if any black teens joined the group. They informed us that they would have to quit as leaders because they would not allow a black guest in their house. I don’t remember specifically but I doubt if “black” was the word they used. Even though I grew up in the deep south and was quite familiar with the prevalent racist attitudes, I thought that was rather un-Christian of them.

    So, in my experience, Huckabee’s idea is just about 100% wrong.

  • busterggi

    Hmmm…didn’t Yahweh encourage racism with his whole ‘chosen people’ bit?

  • Sastra

    “When I love God and I know that God created other people regardless of their color as much as he made me, I don’t have a problem with racism,” Huckabee insisted.

    And you also know that God created people for purposes, right? Yes, He gave them what He gave them and placed them where and how He placed them so that they may better fulfill God’s overarching plan of worship and salvation by following their proper roles. Man, woman, black, white, adult, child — find what you’re supposed to do and do it with a willing and loving heart — a servant’s heart.

    Only secularism allows individual deviations. The worldly don’t have special spiritual insight into God’s holy plan and can justify all sorts of outrageous departures.

    Technically then, Huckabee’s statement is correct. Filter reality through religion and you’ll be amazed at all the things you can no longer have a problem with.

  • Richard Smith

    So… If only Roof had gone to church…?

  • http://rhapsodies.wpmorse.com/ montanto

    And perhaps Christ wasn’t the best person when it came to talking about racism as well.

  • Georgia Sam

    Sorry to nitpick, but their is a punctuation error in your headline. “Y’all” is a contraction for “you all,” so the apostrophe takes the place of the omitted letters.

    My experiences in the 60s had much in common with those that Die Anyway (3) describes. Growing up Southern Baptist in Alabama, I heard the civil rights movement & its leaders condemned from the pulpit on a number of occasions. Later I came to understand that those churches & their members were on the wrong side of the greatest moral issue of our time. That was a big factor in my decision to reject Protestant fundamentalism & ultimately all religion.

  • Georgia Sam

    Duh… Of course that should be “there is…” Serves me right for correcting someone else, I suppose.

  • abb3w

    Another problem with Huckabee’s notion: Dylann Roof was raised a Lutheran.

    Contrariwise atheists and skeptics should bear in mind that it’s still possible it may come out that he’s one of the “Nones” who’ve disaffiliated from Christianity. Given birth cohort, gender, race, and region of the US it could easily be as high as one chance in 3.

    Nohow, the odds remain that Huckabee’s going to need a “No True Christian” kilt for this.

  • eric

    @1 – yup my thought exactly. A minster from the SBC says being Christian makes one not racist…does he even know the recent history of his own sect?

  • eric

    Abb3w: in this article, the family members and Roof’s pastor state that he “regularly” went to church. Now the details are sketchy and I can’t say I particularly like the article, but I would be surprised if the pastor was lying in a way that associated him and his congregation more closely with the murderer. So I would expect he was church-going at least. What he would’ve answered on a PEW survey, without his family seeing, I don’t know.

    But…does it really matter? Christian or atheist, he was a racist murderer. We don’t need an example to know that both groups can occasionally (thankfully, very rarely) produce those. Religious belief is not strongly correlated with criminal behavior, nor is atheism strongly correlated with its absence.

  • Friendly

    From the autobiographical Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass:

    “In August, my master attended a Methodist camp-meeting held in the Bay-side, Talbot county, and there experienced religion. I indulged a faint hope that his conversion would lead him to emancipate his slaves, and that, if he did not do this, it would, at any rate, make him more kind and humane. I was disappointed in both these respects. It neither made him to be humane to his slaves nor to emancipate them. If it had any effect on his character, it made him more cruel and hateful in all his ways; for I believe him to have been a much worse man after his conversion than before.”

  • moarscienceplz

    Yessir, what the Bible Belt truly needs is moar Jebus! Hallelujah!

  • sugarfrosted

    @8 It’s also a contraction of ya all.

  • thebookofdave

    I don’t have a problem with racism,” Huckabee insisted.

    You heard it here first, folks. Huckabee is okay with racism.

  • StevoR

    @4. busterggi : “Hmmm…didn’t Yahweh encourage racism with his whole ‘chosen people’ bit?”

    Er, ya ever noticed what God actually did to his so-called “Chosen people” and how he treated them through out well, pretty much all history eh?

  • StevoR

    Huckabee: Ya’ll Need Jesus to Stop Being Racist

    Y’know, I don’t think Jesus was all that racist really. Not as he’s portrayed in certain key passages of what memories are meant to be left of that ole Rabbi anyhow. *

    His followers incl. Huckabee here OTOH..

    * As Isaac Asimov pointed out :

    … We forget the point of the parable is entirely vitiated by the common phrase “good” Samaritan for that has cast a false light on who the Samaritans were. . . To the Jews [of Jesus’ time – ed.] the Samaritans were not good. They were hated, despised, contemptible heretics with whom no good Jew would have anything to do. Again, the whole point is lost through non-translation.

    …The Parable of the Good Samaritan clearly teaches that there is nothing parochial in the concept “neighbor,” that you cannot confine your decency to your own group and your own kind. All mankind, right down to those those you most despise are your neighbours.”

    Source : Pages 266-270 Isaac Asimov, “Lost in Non-translation” in ‘Magic’ anthology Harper-Collins, 1996.

  • abb3w

    @12ish, eric

    in this article, the family members and Roof’s pastor state that he “regularly” went to church. Now the details are sketchy and I can’t say I particularly like the article, but I would be surprised if the pastor was lying in a way that associated him and his congregation more closely with the murderer. So I would expect he was church-going at least. What he would’ve answered on a PEW survey, without his family seeing, I don’t know.

    While the Daily Mail isn’t exactly the most impeccable of reporting outlets, that does seem to further diminish the Bayesian prospects that he’d disaffiliated.

    @12ish, eric

    But…does it really matter?

    In so far as Huckleberry’s suggestion being based from specious premises matters, and so far as Roof’s religiosity reinforces that Huckleberry’s suggestion is based from specious premises, yes.

  • sigurd jorsalfar

    … is now saying that just embracing Jesus instantly makes you non-racist.

    No. He’s saying racism is a trivial problem compared with the problem of atheism.