Faith Leaders Outraged by Police Killing of Philando Castile
A society that attacks black and brown bodies is not acceptable. We must act.
Once again our community is reeling. Last night in Falcon Heights, Philando Castile – a black man and a Child of God – was fatally shot by a police officer in his car after being stopped for a broken taillight. The police officer shot Philando multiple times in his car, in front of his girlfriend and a four-year old child.
The ongoing slaughter of our black brothers and sisters is happening as a result of our country’s shameful legacy of racial oppression and economic exploitation. The forces of evil: fear, hatred and violence are pervading our culture and destroying our lives. Too many white people fail to resist these forces, instead falling prey to voices of doubt which would put victims of violence on trial for their very own murder.
Speaking at today’s press conference, Pastor Brian Herron of Zion Baptist stated, “Why, in 2016, we’re still talking about ‘I’m a man?’… Why do we have to keep saying we’re human? It’s time for us as a people to collectively come together and begin to work on these issues unafraid, not fearing anything or anybody and working until justice comes.”
We are called by our faith to lament the evils we face. We are also called by our faith to speak the prophetic truth. The truth is that we live in country that was built on a genocide of our indigenous brothers and sisters, legacy of slavery, racial oppression and economic exploitation of black and brown bodies. Until we confess our collective sins and wrestle with the implications of that legacy, we cannot achieve reconciliation. God calls us to do that work.
We cannot turn away. We cannot acquiesce. We cannot anesthetize ourselves to the pain and suffering. We cannot accept the status quo.
We will mourn. We will continue to organize our people. We will act. We will resist.