Recovering a Politics of Lament in Our Faith Communities

An article that I wrote for the Huffington Post went live today…

This article is a followup to my blog series here last week on lamenting the Aurora shooting

Also, if these reflections on lament have resonated with you, you should check out my friend Tripp Hudgins’ recent thoughts in the same direction


Recovering a Politics of Lament in Our Faith Communities

C. Christopher Smith, Senior Editor, The Englewood Review of Books

One of the most disturbing things about the American public’s reaction to the recent theater shooting in Aurora was the speed at which the tragedy was politicized, snapped up by partisan pundits and reduced to a debate about gun control. I know this is a presidential election year, but have we no sensitivity to the families and communities immediately impacted by this tragedy? Have we no grief that this is only the most recent in a abysmally long series of shootings that have rocked our nation over the last two decades?

To lament a situation like Aurora means to be engaged with and attentive to not only those people deeply pained by the event, but also to that which has caused the pain. Aurora, of course, is not the first time that our national politics has acted without really engaging the real issues that are inflicting pain on our populace. As the Occupy movement has been emphasizing in recent years, there’s a lot of talk in Washington, but very little actually gets done to address the most pressing concerns of the middle and lower classes that daily cause significant pain and grief. Indeed, the current dissatisfaction that many people feel with both parties is rooted in the parties’ lack of careful attention to the real sorts of issues that are causing pain and grief among large sectors of the American populace.

[ Read the full article on the Huffington Post website... ]

Two Slow Church-related ebooks on sale now!
A School for Kindness?
Ferguson and Our Broken Justice System
Alexander Schmemann – Lent is a Time of Slowing Down
  • Susan Adams

    Congratulations, Chris, on being published on the Huffington Post!! Nice job!

  • Susan Adams

    Today the good folks from Christian Peacemaking Teams sent out a thought-provoking reflection on the Wisconsin shooting of Sikh worshippers. I think we ought to be lamenting this shooting with at least as much grief and sorrow as we have the theater shooting.
    You can read the reflection here: