I finally got a chance to go see the movie Selma last week. Selma is the type of movie that is difficult to watch due to the violence, birthed out of hate and undergirded by poor theological anthropology, toward a particular section of the American population before and during the 1960’s. My newly adopted African American son certainly gives me a new perspective on discrimination and I could not help but think as I exited the theater, “What kind of country have I brought my son to?”
Thankfully due to the courageous work by Martin Luther King Jr. and thousands of other Civil Rights activists, laws were changed and protection was provided for African Americans. However, it would be naïve to believe that legislation can change men’s hearts. In spite of laws, hate is still widespread in the South and in pockets throughout the country. But I walked out of the theater last Tuesday encouraged, thinking that we are at least are making progress in the arenas of discrimination and hatred towards people that are different than the majority .
The very next day I began to hear about the law that was signed in Indiana giving individuals and business the legal right to refuse service based upon sexual orientation. Does this sound familiar to anyone else? Maybe it is just because I just watched the movie, but refusing service to a minority group and claiming that the discrimination is a religious right, sounds a lot like Selma in the 1960’s to me.
This is discrimination plain and simple and discrimination of any kind finds its roots in hate. Regardless of your moral stance towards sexual orientation, one thing that can be said for sure is that Jesus never supports hate or discrimination. He didn’t discriminate against anyone due to their race, gender, standing in life or their sin of any kind. In fact, had He refused to serve those that did not hold on to His own moral standards, He would have never showed up on earth in the first place! But He did show up. He showed up to battle hate with love. Spoiler alert: LOVE WINS. That is what we are celebrating this weekend when we celebrate Easter. Love conquered hate, life defeated death.
I don’t know about you but I always try to place myself on the winning team. That means I am aligning myself with Team Love instead of Team Hate whether that be in Jerusalem in the first century, the Deep South in the 1960’s, or Indiana in 2015. Go Team Love.