Playing the Race Card

What if I told you I was about one race of people? Would you judge me? Would you immediately discredit me? The events of the last few days have ripped at the core of who I am. The hate of people of color kills me inside. I just don’t understand how you can hate people with such a passion that you don’t want them around anymore. Are people of color any different than white people? If we cut them open and white people open are there going to be differences? No. At the core of people there are no differences. Every person is going to have a heart, lungs, and blood coursing through their veins. And the blood will be red. You take off the skin and all guys look alike and all ladies look alike. So why is there so much hate?

I was talking with one of our interns last week and he asked me a question. (He has another job that he works on weekends when he isn’t at the church) He asked me, Thad I have two friends at my other job who are gay and I treat them like normal people and accept them as humans but I don’t agree with their stance on being gay, they don’t know that I am a Christian, what do I do? I answered with Well you might not agree with their take on that but you can still treat them well and love them unconditionally. I told him if you stripped away the skin on your mom and these two girls would they look exactly the same bodily makeup wise? He said yes, of course they would because they would all be females. And I said well dude then let’s treat them like they are all equal and that they have worth because they have a heartbeat.

So you might be saying there’s a lot of questions there, are you going to answer them? I might not. But stick around please. I’ll start with this though, let’s begin to treat people with equal worth. Regardless of their skin color, sexual orientation, political choosing, or anything else that divides this country. Treat every person you see like they matter and that their story is important. I believe if every person begins to do this that our country, which has endured so much this weekend, will begin to change. We cannot just continue to talk the talk if we don’t walk walk. To quote Ghandi, we have to be the change we want to see in this world.

To be the change it starts with each of us. What does that truly mean in a world that is so broken? That starts with us beginning to show love to people of all types no matter what their background is. Its not hard, start with listening to their stories. See where they are came from and what makes them tick. At the end of the day they are still human and they still matter.

Secondly, racism we have to start naming it. The events in Charlottesville this past weekend weren’t just racism they were White Supremacists, were crushing to my soul. My soul that has incredible black friends and soon to be an absolutely amazing black sister in law. My mind immediately went to my friend who I consider a brother, Jason Smith. Jason is a radio show host in Memphis, TN of the Jason and John show. I met Jason last year and we quickly bonded over our love for the Cubs and the Bears. He is someone I talk to often for an outside view point or just a buddy to talk sports on. He is not less than because of his skin color or his political views. But I consider him equal if not more important. He is an incredible dude who loves Jesus and is a great friend. My second thought was to my brother and his soon to be (in less than a month) wife, Eula. I began to think my family pretty soon will become directly affected by this. And why should my brother and his wife when they begin to have children have to raise them differently because of the color of their skin. Why? It makes no sense to my mind that my nieces and nephews will have to be raised any different than any other person on this planet. Both of these people, Jason and Eula, are absolutely incredible BLACK human beings. And just because they are black does not effect how I think of them. For all I care I could have rainbow friends and still think they were awesome.

Friends that are a different color of skin than I have, I will fight for you. I will continue to love you no matter what. I will sit on the curb with you and try to understand where you are coming from. I don’t know what you are going through because I haven’t gone through it, but I will strive diligently to understand where you are coming from daily.

For the world to start changing we have to start looking and treating people as equal. It can’t be a conditional thing either. It cannot be something like, Oh if they are straight then I will treat them as an equal. Or if they are a certain color I will treat them equal. Or if they are the gender that they are born into I have to treat them as equal. No treat them equal because they have a pulse. Because if you cut them open they would look just like anyone else without skin.

So yes at the end of the day, I do care about only one race of people. But that race of people is the human race. Let’s choose love over hate, peace over anger, and empathy over indifference.

The time is now, the world is the place to make a difference. But it starts with us.

Thad Ernst

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