Last week, after the events in Charlottesville, I started reading Jim Wallis’ book, America’s Original Sin: Racism, White Privilege, and the Bridge to a New America.* I bought the book months ago but didn’t read it. I read the first chapter and stopped. Frankly, I was disturbed and challenged and not quite ready. After the murder of Heather Heyer in Charlottesville at the white supremacist rally and the events that followed, I felt I could no longer wait.
Wallis’ explanation of the concept of “white privilege” is the most cogent I have heard. The book is written in a personal and approachable style, with anecdotes personal reflections to help us understand and confront the sin that our country struggles with today.
I’m only about half way through the book, but I am confident recommending it to you. We cannot end the sin of racism in America without facing it. Racism will not end if we ignore it or if we are silent about our opposition to it. To be silent is to accept the status quo. We must speak responsibly and compassionately against racism. We must seek concrete ways to act against racism. This book gives us language to have that conversation and the knowledge we need to act for justice.
Yours in Christ,
*Jim Wallis will be in Seattle on September 16 @ 7:00 pm at McCaw Hall. Here is a link to the event