Review From User :
My present-day dream dinner party guest list would now include Bryan Stevenson, Michelle Alexander, Shaka Senghor, Cornel West, Rebecca Traister and Jim Wallis. What an amazing experience that would be!
My favorite books are those that challenge me, make me uncomfortable, make me rethink things I'd always assumed to be true, and help me understand things from a new perspective. This book definitely did all of that and more. After reading "Just Mercy", "Between the World and Me", and "The New Jim Crow", this was the book I needed to add in the theological perspective on the issues of racism (America's original sin), white privilege, repentance, and the church's role in helping us cross that bridge to a new America. Wallis challenges us as white Christians to be more Christian than white, which is a rather profound statement when you stop and think about it. He also calls the church to repent of the original sin of racism and discusses the complexities of that word "repent" and what that actually involves and looks like if we are truly to repent as God calls us to do. The book not only offers statistics, stories, and challenges, but also offers tangible things we can do to help bring about the "beloved community" God calls us to be a part of in this world, through our schools, churches and sports. I am well aware of the fact that many people will disagree wholeheartedly with what this book proposes and, sadly, I know that many people who need to read this will not read it. But this book leaves me feeling hopeful about the future, about conversations that can take place, about hard work that can occur to move us forward so that we can embrace our diversity and view it as a strength in all its glorious beauty. In the words of MLK, "Let nobody give you the impression that the problem of racial injustice will work itself out. Let nobody give you the impression that only time will solve the problem...Somewhere we must come to see that human progress never rolls on the wheels of inevitability. It comes through the tireless efforts and the persistent work of dedicated individuals. Without this hard work, time becomes an ally of the primitive forces of social stagnation. So we must help time and realize that the time is always right to do right."
America’s problem with race has deep roots, with the country’s foundation tied to the near extermination of one race of people and the enslavement of another. Racism is truly our nation’s original sin.
“It’s time we right this unacceptable wrong,” says bestselling author and leading Christian activist Jim Wallis. Fifty years ago, Wallis was driven away from his faith by a white church that considered dealing with racism to be taboo. His participation in the civil rights movement brought him back when he discovered a faith that commands racial justice. Yet as recent tragedies confirm, we continue to suffer from the legacy of racism. The old patterns of white privilege are colliding with the changing demographics of a diverse nation. The church has been slow to respond, and Sunday morning is still the most segregated hour of the week.
In America’s Original Sin, Wallis offers a prophetic and deeply personal call to action in overcoming the racism so ingrained in American society. He speaks candidly to Christians – particularly white Christians – urging them to cross a new bridge toward racial justice and healing.
Whenever divided cultures and gridlocked power structures fail to end systemic sin, faith communities can help lead the way to grassroots change. Probing yet positive, biblically rooted yet highly practical, this book shows people of faith how they can work together to overcome the embedded racism in America, galvanizing a movement to cross the bridge to a multiracial church and a new America.