The Congo – No Liberty and Trouble for All

This post was originally posted on my own site. I realized at the prodding of one of our co-conspirators over here that the piece intersected our concern for raising awareness of infanticide. Fifty percent of those killed in the atrocity events in the DRC were children under 5. That qualifies as infanticide. 

Occasionally an event exposes the failure of the Left/Right divide. When this occurs it brings the hope and possibility of destabilizing the balance required to direct our attention to human issues rather than idealogical ones.

A new friend* recently posted the following,

I am trying and praying I can get every friend I have to take time to watch this video – 6-10,000,000 dead Congolese should matter to us, especially if our consumption of electronics, our corporations, and our government are major contributors to the conflict. American church leaders and academics are used by the beneficiaries of this conflict to cover up what is going on. This is the Holocaust of our time, what we do today about it matters. The first step is learning what is going on just one hour from where Hope and I are working today. Please help us spread the word. I can only keep this post up for a few days, when I cross back into Rwanda I will have to delete it. Please use the URL below to share the video.

The near thirty minute video eventually ties a call to action from those interested in climate change, women’s issues, and the welfare of children if you cannot be stirred by anything else you see and hear. You may have read that last sentence and jumped to your arguments against climate change. You may have become suspicious of what is meant by women’s issues. But, few of us would think twice about sounding the alarm if we learned that thousands upon thousands of children under five are being killed to preserve economic advantages. Or would we?

There is enough in the short video to call into question Republicans, Democrats, or any other bureaucrat. Even more, there is enough to ask why is the Church in the West is silent about the events going on in the Democratic Republic of Congo?

Just this morning David Fitch posted a couple of provocative comments, not specifically related to the atrocities in the Congo,

The greatest syncretism of religions in world today is the one between evangelical Christianity and American capitalism. 

and,

Evangelicals think critiquing capitalism means we have to get rid of it (go socialist). No, it enables us to live “in” it, but not “of it.

Fitch raises his critique from within Evangelicalism. I am looking for the critique from without. Both groups, if there is really an easy bifurcation between the two poles, miss the way the following quote could be re-worked,

Capitalism is a religion under the guise of an economics that demands the hearts, souls, and minds of its citizens. (David Fitch)

How about turning the quote like this?

Capitalism is a religion under the guise of an economics that demands the hearts, souls, and minds of its citizens and all other human objects.

Watch the video for those of you who still want to think that President Obama is not a capitalist. Even more, if you think that Secretary of State Clinton is not a capitalist, watch the video. Two people with the clout to call into question just what is going on in the Democratic Republic of Congo practice selectively where they will demand the enforcement of human rights, preservation of the climate, and championing women and children.

Before my conservative readers get smug, where is the outrage from the Right – political or religious?

There is an interesting appeal Jesus makes in John 10 where he self-identifies as the Good Shepherd, the better king, the faithful shepherd. “If I am not doing the works of my Father, then do not believe me; but if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me and I am in the Father.” (John 10:37-38) And, one wonders why they want to kill Jesus.

Jesus points to the works that he does as revealing the Father. Let them speak for what the Father looks like and what the Father does. These words do not come without context. Jesus just healed the man born blind from birth. The religious debate centered on matters of authority and orthodoxy. Jesus said, “Let the works speak, if you will not believe.” There must be some related reason why there is such a rise of skeptics, cynics, and Nones. Maybe we have few works that speak.

One wonders if the reason we, in our conservative and liberal circles, parse what each other says is not the result of a greater interest in our words than in our works. It seems here on the issue of life in the Congo that we could team up together and by our works demonstrate both our love for one another, a hallmark of Christian discipleship, and our love for the other, a distinctive of the character we claim for the Christian God, and let our works speak where our words fail.

What are your thoughts after watching the video?

Share the video!

*I withheld my new friend’s name out of respect for his location and work.

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About Rev. Dr. Todd Littleton

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