Our Resistance, My Resistance: Enough for the Whole World | Making America Great Again | David N Moore

The following is an excerpt of Making America Great Again, a winsome and prophetic text by David N Moore. It’s a featured Speakeasy selection, and there are still limited review copies available for qualified reviewers.

Our Resistance

The world slowly divested from South Africa during Apartheid and banned them from the Olympics. Because the resistance was both external and internal, embodied perhaps most in Nelson Mandela, the era ended without military intervention although the country suffered decades of violent repression of its black-majority population and frequent volatile pushbacks from freedom fighters.

Before Apartheid the global community, including the United States, failed Jews by refusing them refuge, and millions were murdered. Some of the history’s greatest Americans were—and are— subjugated today by their own society, simply because they are not white, and we need allies. We have seen, time and again, that the community of western Christians is selective in its service. Some of them certainly will rise to the occasion. We cannot afford to wait for their initiative, though, because we can’t wait. We must raise our voices and be broadly visible to those who want to know who we are. Humans are famous for coming together, becoming more generous and helpful when under duress; there’s nothing like a disaster to create heroes. We must remain committed to the understanding that community is far superior to empire.

People who are comfortable with the policies of the powers are never satisfied with nonviolent resistance. What they want is no resistance. They are infuriated by Ferguson protestors, Colin Kaepernick, Black Lives Matter, Standing Rock and pretty much anything else. We can’t afford to let their patronizing smirks or pelting sneers put out our flame. Stay strong. You are saving lives. And, world? We need you to do all you can—now. This is an invitation to the community of nations to arise with us.

My Resistance

Recently wed Patrisse Khan-Cullors, co-founder of Black Lives Matter, said in an interview with Esquire, “We reflected on the time when marriage was illegal for black people and remembered when it was illegal, just months earlier, for LGBTQ people. We understood our love as an act of political resistance.” Love is resistance. Hope is resistance. Joy is resistance. Let’s live our lives as fully as we can and raise our voices when we get the chance.

I have often heard the statement, “God has a wonderful plan for your life.” There are multiple, joyful pathways before us. A woman asked me once, “Our family is moving to the Midwest, and I don’t know if it’s God’s will,” to which I replied, “if it doesn’t work out, move back, or somewhere else.” Rigid adherence to the idea of “a plan for your life” evades the spontaneity of God. There are surprises out there waiting to be experienced.

My friend, Ashley is Afro-Latina, and it is hard for her to think in binary when it comes to race matters. She also sees that people like her are our hope—in sort of a reverse Tower of Babel way—because of sharper chops for diplomacy. An hour with her might convince anyone that she is right, which gives reason for hope. The prerequisite is awareness. When a person is ashamed of herself, or a part of herself, her capacity to enter effectively into the tumultuous and sometimes raging debate will be limited.

People deprived of their social dignity cannot be satisfied. Free people imagine they are satisfied because their perception is a study in comparisons. Poet Emma Lazarus is known mainly for her sonnet, “The New Colossus,” on the Statue of Liberty’s base. She once wrote, “Until we are all free, we are none of us free.” We will therefore be in restive motion until that day comes because those on the bottom will cry, “I can’t breathe,” and when the stranglehold is not released their children will have the same chant. It is not a country, but its citizens, who will find relief by opening our hearts. I get frustrated, I get tired, I feel like giving up sometimes. And so I am looking for your help.

There’s Enough For The Entire World

A couple of centuries ago diamonds were a rare resource. Then extremely abundant diamond mines were “discovered” in South Africa and other countries of Africa. These reserves threatened to make diamonds cheap. While others trafficked in African slaves, the opportunist Cecil Rhodes said, “I prefer land to n*****s.” He upended and butchered families and nations in a land grab that rivals the worst the world has seen. Zimbabwe was once named Rhodesia for him, because he led British South Africa Company, and because today’s heroes can be tomorrow’s scoundrels. Rhodes established the DeBeers cartel, collaborating with other cartels in order to control international prices of diamonds, otherwise the diamond in your ring wouldn’t cost much more than its gold mount.

Diamonds are artificially expensive. They are not the only thing that should be affordable.

Energy should not be costly. There’s plenty of food. Medical care and education don’t have to be expensive. A proper understanding of the message of Jesus reveals that he died because the powers wanted to limit the supply to their own benefit. They were determined to eliminate any threat to a status quo that lined the pockets of the few and kept the many wanting.

More of us around the world are seeing that we can all do well. When Jesus said, “You will always have the poor among you,” he knew his hearers would remember Deuteronomy 15:11 which says, “There will always be some in the land who are poor. That is why I am commanding you to share freely with the poor and with other Israelites in need.” This was his life’s mission. He identified with the poor. He was the embodiment of the poor and he wanted them to see that. By honoring Jesus’ body, the poor were instituted forever.

Away with graceless Christianity, so full of suspicion and devoid of mercy! Out with the old and in with the new hope of Jesus. Even with its persistent sorrows, ubiquitous disappointments and lingering aches of the soul, life is hopeful. This will be realized increasingly in the days to come as more of us discover how not alone we are. Faith is generous. Hope is strong. Love is limitless. There’s no need to be selfish and stingy because the supply only increases, and access to it, as we share.

Are you lonesome tonight? Powerless people feel less powerless when they know they are not alone. If you would but tease them out, you will find your friends everywhere. You need to know this because the challenge ahead is formidable and we can’t take it on alone if we expect to prevail.

Praise for Making America Great Again

“… an impassioned call for solidarity and unity in a time of political and social uncertainty.”
— Santa Barbara Independent

“I dare you to open this book and take a journey filled with border crossings. At times this journey will make you cry over our silence and blindness to intolerance, but all along the way, you will discover love and be filled with hope. Without finger wagging, David’s unvarnished history helps us connect the dots of our nation’s complicity in oppression. David invites me—a person of white privilege—into his world knowing we are all in this together. Standing in this strange new world of 2017, David calls the Christian community to join with all people of good faith or no faith to be bridge builders and not wall builders.”
— Mark E. Asman, Rector Emeritus, Trinity Episcopal Church, Santa Barbara

“Every ‘woke’ white person I know has truth-telling African-American friends to thank for their awakening. No one speaks the truth in love better than David Moore does. What could the world be like if all white Americans had such trusty friends? Read this book, grow in understanding, and help to heal the world!”
— Carren Sheldon, Interim Rector, Episcopal Church of St. Martin, Davis, California

“Pastor David Moore understands what Dr. King called the ‘fierce urgency of now.’ He is a dedicated and fearless nonviolent activist who consistently fights for the ‘least of these.’ He is engaging, energetic, and prophetic.”
— Ralph Armbruster-Sandoval, Chicana/o Studies Professor University of California, Santa Barbara

“In this thoughtful exploration of race, injustice, Christian spirituality and the complex divisions of our day, Pastor David Moore does something extraordinary. In a time when pointing an accusatory finger is akin to being prophetic, oversimplified statements are the currency of the day, and ingroup/outgroup dynamics dominate our social geography, Pastor David resists dual thinking at every turn. Instead, he beckons us to follow him as he integrates unity with justice, a commitment to orthodoxy with a humble openness to other perspectives, and balances love and truth. May we all listen and learn from this wise scholar-pastor.”
— Christena Cleveland, Associate Professor of the Practice of Organizational Studies Duke Divinity School

About the Author

The Rev. Dr. David N. Moore, Jr. is an ecumenical teacher who tries to be a contemplative and passionate defender of the defenseless. He graduated from UC Santa Barbara with a major in Communication Studies. He earned his Master’s degree from St. Stephen’s University in New Brunswick, Canada, and currently holds an appointment to adjunct faculty there, teaching Ancient Mediterranean History. He holds a Doctorate in Theology from the University of South Africa.  David and his wife, Diane, live in Santa Barbara, California. They have 5 adult children.

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.