Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Southern Black Religious Leaders Gives #BlackLivesMatter a History Lesson

by Kim D.

Did you know that the Black Lives Matter movement has a platform? It does - click here to view. Among its demands is the reduction of military expenditures and reallocation of said resources to domestic infrastructure and community wellbeing. First BLM defines the problem:
America is an empire that uses war to expand territory and power. American wars are unjust, destructive to Black communities globally and do not keep Black people safe locally. The military industrial complex offers massive profits to private corporations from the death of our global diaspora by handing out massive government contracts to expand US military presence across the globe, while resources for domestic infrastructure and social programs to meet the needs of Black people and working class communities within the US diminishes.
It further explains:
The US justifies and advances the global war on terror via its alliance with Israel and is complicit in the genocide taking place against the Palestinian people. The US requires Israel to use 75 percent of all the military aid it receives to buy US-made arms. Consequently, every year billions of dollars are funneled from US taxpayers to hundreds of arms corporations, who then wage lobbying campaigns pushing for even more foreign military aid. The results of this policy are twofold: it not only diverts much needed funding from domestic education and social programs, but it makes US citizens complicit in the abuses committed by the Israeli government. Israel is an apartheid state with over 50 laws on the books that sanction discrimination against the Palestinian people. Palestinian homes and land are routinely bulldozed to make way for illegal Israeli settlements. Israeli soldiers also regularly arrest and detain Palestinians as young as 4 years old without due process. Everyday, Palestinians are forced to walk through military checkpoints along the US-funded apartheid wall.
However, not everyone in the black community agrees with these sentiments. In fact some southern black religious leaders are responding to Black Lives Matter and it's platform with a little history lesson. Taking the lead, Bishop Lawrence M. Wooten with the Ecumenical Leadership Council of Missouri (ELCM) issued a statement that denounced BLM, forcefully stating that it would not stand behind the anti-Israel views:

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