At first glace LA 92 is a history lesson about the 1992 Los Angeles riots, but just below the surface is a warning and a call for Americans to wake up. For hundreds of years Black people and people of color have complained about police brutality and, unfortunately, most of the time white people have ignored or dismissed the calls for help or justice. This indifference and callousness combined with other issues such as high unemployment, underfunded schools, and aggressive policing tactics has led to frustration which manifests itself in violence.
Our favorite resources that are not to be missed.
Over hundreds of years and the entanglement of church and state American Christians have lost their prophetic and Biblical voice when it comes to justice and punishment. Pastor Dominque DuBoise Gilliard tells the history of incarceration and the churches role and theological posture – both good and bad – with incarceration in the United States before tracing the history of Christian’s views on criminals and crime to retributive justice that is at odds with the Bible.
An intimate, engaging eight part series focusing on the Flint Police Department (Michigan) that shows the policing from all sides, the police, the public that supports them, the public that doesn’t support them, the politicians that support them and don’t support them, and everyone in-between. Flint Town shows the complexity of working for a police department in neighborhoods that are at high stress levels because of poverty, race, and, in Flint’s case, water issues. It also shows the differences in officer’s approaches to policing based on their ethnicity and where/how they grew up. This series is highly recommended.
Occasionally you think a documentary is going to be about one thing, but it completely surprises you. Sometimes that is good thing and sometimes it completely fails. In the case of J.E.S.U.S.A. it is the former. While the trailer, the marketing material, and the first 13 minutes of the film all point to exploring the conflation of American nationalism and Christianity the core question that the film truly attempts to answer is whether Christians should engage or abstain from violence.
From activists to local board members to pastors to state senators For the Love tells the story of what it can mean to be a Christian and be involved with politics. The interviewees know that the political process can be messy, but Christians acting distinctly and getting involved, especially at the local level, is one of the best and often overlooked ways to love our neighbors. This is a highly recommended resource and a great starting point on your learning journey.
Realizing that you are not an expert on all issues, that neither the Democrat or the Republican party is Christian and that candidates are human and will fail and disappoint are three reasons to recognize how a person votes does not determine whether a person is a Christian or not.
How do we vote as Christians? Rejecting tribalism and voting to advantage our communities is a good start.
In an engaging information packed 45-minute sermon Justin Giboney says, “Christians on both sides of the political spectrum need to ask themselves if they are going to be accomplices or cross bearers? Will we add to the tribalism and division or will we be models of civility and reconciliation? Walk with me into this tension.”
In a polished Radiolab (NPR) style presentation complete with commentary interspersed with interviews and upbeat music the hosts expertly tell the story of polarization and its two main effects on Christians.
Humans are created in the image of God. That sentence is what Christians should build their framework around for political engagement. Not a political party, not a tribe, and not an ideology. Human dignity is one the major themes that flows throughout Compassion (&) Conviction.