I know many of you have watched the speech I made earlier this week. Thank goodness I didn’t know it was being taped or it may have changed my mindset in the moment.
Also, those who know me, know how unusual it is for me to have a written script. This moment called for more than a post-it note. If you line this up with the video – it isn’t word for word. Sticking to a script is not my comfort zone.
Thanks you to CUSH and Pastor Jonathan Baker for inviting me to speak. Here is the text I used to support my speech.
Justice for George Rally
Grace Lutheran/Grace Welcome Center
June 2, 2020 Kenosha, WI
Thank you Pastor Jonathon for that introduction and for inviting me to be here today.
I stand before you in my new shirt – #pissedoffpastor
This is new for me – my usually MO is cool, calm and collected. I prided myself being able to make people feel at home. I tried to make folks comfortable.
But in this moment in our history, at the cross section of a pandemic, lack of moral leadership, and the continual murder of black, brown and indigenous people, it is time to change the MO from making people comfortable, to making people, and I mean white people, uncomfortable. I’m going to be letting them know that I’m a pastor and I’m pissed!
What am I pissed about?
I’m pissed at the President for holding up my scared text and as my Bishop, Elizabeth Eaton said, was an act of manipulation and desecration.
I’m pissed at folks who voted for him because they just couldn’t vote for Hillary, because they just didn’t know that this (meaning our current situation) could happen. This is white privilege – not having a clue why leadership matters because it really doesn’t effect your lives. I’ll be fine. I cried the day he was elected and was afraid to send my kids to school.
I’m pissed at the entertainment culture in the US that does not value education. Be entertained by your violent games, but when violence comes into real life because of real oppression you can’t be bothered to really understand what is going on. Learn the truth of the history this country – the bad with the good. Study history and if you are only getting the history of only one group – then expand your view – read more.
I’m pissed because in 5K my oldest daughter was told by a classmate that he could be mean to her because of the color of her skin. That when my husband, an amazing black man, and I go into store and he asked a question, they give me, instead of him, the answer. Look him in the eye. He is not dangerous.
I’m pissed because for 400+ years slavery have simply been reimaged and now it is the prison system.
I’m pissed at myself for too often having blinders on and not pushing to the point of discomfort, to push to change.
The list of reasons why I’m pissed is too long. The list of names of black, brown, and indigenous people is also too long, but let us say his name – George Floyd. Say his name George Floyd. Say his name George Floyd. And Bree and David and Ahmaud and, and, and . . . . . too many names.
So I stand before you today with the promise to stay pissed and with this righteous anger push towards reformation.
I stand before you today with the Bible in my hand because in this book is the story of:
Moving from slavery to freedom
Welcoming the stranger and the resident alien
Giving a cup of cold water to the least of these
Showing us how to love God and love our neighbor
That remind us that God created all and is in all.
I will love my neighbor by staying pissed and will work towards justice until everyone can breathe freely.