Of all the possibilities for national calamity to arise in the wake of COVID-19, who expected a week-long (so far) tumult of race riots all across the country? I certainly did not. After reflecting on these times, I must say that my final conclusion is this: I am utterly perplexed. Well, I suppose I should not say utterly perplexed, but mildly perplexed. After all, the Scripture speaks to the source of my confusion on understanding what is going on around me.
What happened to George Floyd was an atrocity. Not because he was black, and not because the police officers who murdered him were white. His murder was an atrocity because he was man made in the image of God. Murder is, in fact, such an atrocity that God himself instituted the death penalty for it at the very beginnings of human history (Gen. 9.6). The cover-up and scandal of the police department and local government, while evil in its own right, should not surprise us. Local governments are much more corrupt than the federal government, which sets the corruption bar pretty high.
The outrage expressed at the injustice surrounding the murder of George Floyd is not perplexing either. In fact, I would argue that we all ought to feel that sense of indignation and anger (the right kind) toward injustice. It should make us outraged that men would take advantage of their place in society to protect those who murdered a man in cold blood. We should speak out, and march, and demand justice when injustices are committed.
To a degree, I can even understand the rage that leads to rioting and uncontrolled reactionary violence. We see this in the broad stroke of human history. When any group of people is pushed beyond a certain line, eventually they react and react violently. People can be like a spring that you push back so far that eventually it reaches the point where you can no longer contain it, and it comes back to hit you in the face. Just look to the myriad of slave revolts in ancient Greece, Egypt, and Rome; more recently, you can look to the American Revolution. I understand that the politics of rioting are complex, but the fact remains that this is standard fare when it comes to political history.
The fact that perplexes me, however, is that those who are speaking against injustice use the phrase “Black Lives Matter” as their slogan. It perplexes me that so many people can be so blatantly hypocritical. According to the CDC, “non-Hispanic black women had the highest abortion rate (25.1 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15–44 years) and ratio (390 abortions per 1,000 live births).” Think about that last ratio for a moment. 390 of 1000 is approximately 4/10. So for every ten babies born, four were murdered. According to this study from the CDC, there were approximately 640,079 births from black mothers. This means that approximately 249,630 black babies were murdered in 2015 just in the United States [(640,079/1000)*390, please feel free to correct me if my math is incorrect].
There are no riots for these 249,630 (two hundred forty-nine thousand six hundred thirty, for emphasis) black lives that were extinguished. Someone might counter and say that it’s different when “the mother chooses.” Interesting. Who made mothers the final arbiters of life and death for their children? The last time I checked, Scripture still taught that the Lord gives and the Lord takes away. But even more to the point, those who argue that the black genocide perpetrated by abortionists is somehow “liberating” black women are sadly living in a state of self-delusion. Margaret Sanger founded Planned Parenthood with the express goal of eugenics.
For those of you who are “conservatives” (whatever that term means), consider this: when you voice your support that “black lives matter,” do you feel the same hatred toward the abortionist as you do the racist? Have you become so accustomed to the dark reality of the murder of babies that it is no longer sensational enough to spark your indignation? Are you as ready to be up in arms to fight for the justice of babies whose lives were stolen from them? Anything less is hypocritical.
I suppose I should not really be perplexed. Men are wholly inclined to all evil, indisposed, disabled, and wholly opposite to all good. Men are wont to puff themselves up with pride, so when an opportunity comes along we grab on to it with both hands. I see two ditches that Christians particularly can fall off of in this particular time. The first is the ditch of being apathetic to the real hurt and real pain and real injustice of racism in our land. The second is the ditch of being swept up in emotionalism and sensationalism that leads to unbiblical perceptions. In these times of racial tension and division, we must remember and be diligent to conform our thinking to the thoughts of Scripture. Punishing racist men will not purge racism from our land. Shooting looters and rioters will not purge uncontrolled violence and rage from our land. Only through the preaching of the gospel of Jesus Christ can healing come to the hurting. Let that be our mindset. We are all equally guilty before God for our sin, and we are equally in need of Savior, and, thanks be to God, we have a Savior who is able and willing to save all those who come to him.