Today we continue our examination of the religious, legal cult of antiracism by focusing on the new priesthood. Eligibility in Israel’s priesthood came from being of the tribe of Levi. The new priesthood takes the opposite approach: All are eligible except those belonging to a certain “tribe”—the tribe of whiteness. The more oppressed and marginalized you feel, the stronger your qualifications. All minorities are welcome, especially those engaged in those lifestyles God calls abominations. The very most qualified in this dubious priesthood are those with the most layers of intersectionality. Therefore, a black, female (by birth) who is somehow a lesbian while also being bisexual, transgender, queer, intersexual, overweight, partially blind, and poor with a skin disease would unquestionably be declared the grand high priestess.
The elite status of these new priests is based on what Voddie Baucham Jr. (the author of Fault Lines: The Social Justice Movement and Evangelicalism’s Looming Catastrophe) calls Ethnic Gnosticism. Gnosticism teaches that truth is accessed through those with special, mystical knowledge. Ethnic Gnosticism claims that people of a certain ethnicity represent this new privileged class. As you can guess, this refers to people of color because their experiential knowledge is legitimate, appropriate, and critical to understanding, analyzing, and teaching about racial subordination.
While black people rank the highest, all oppressed minorities qualify as priests. Their oppressed status offers them this special knowledge. Since whites are the oppressors, they cannot possibly understand this higher knowledge. Minority status brings with it a presumed competence to speak about race and racism. It’s all about what has been experienced. Logical reasoning cannot be applied because it is a product of whiteness that is used to oppress non-whites.
A Black Perspective
Ethnic Gnosticism assumes the existence of a black perspective all black people share (unless they are “broken”). This was seen in living color when the verdict in the Breonna Taylor case didn’t go the way they thought is should. When the evidence was presented, most of the often-repeated talking point claims by the antiracist crowd were shown to be false. How did they respond? They “implied” that the officers weren’t indicted because the grand jury lacked the black perspective. The fact that the case was headed by Kentucky’s black attorney general only proved that he was one of the “broken” blacks who had given into his white oppressors. After the myths of the black version of what happened were dispelled, antiracist activists kept repeating them because they supported the black experience narrative.
Heed the Black Voices
Ethnic Gnosticism also assumes that white people can only become aware of this higher knowledge by elevating and heeding black voices (which are limited to those who speak of the black experience of oppression). Sadly, this twisted view has found a home among many evangelicals. Veggie Tales creator Phil Vischer recently tweeted, “The Bible can’t tell us what it is like to be black in America, or how to address systemic discrimination in housing or education. We need to listen to voices who study the issues and have had the experience.”
Since this special knowledge reflects the values and interests of those who produce it, any quest for objectivity is tantamount to a quest for white supremacy. The only valuable voices are those from “social contexts” outside the racial hegemony. These voices will reveal “other ways of knowing”—ways that will help whites understand their obvious guilt. The personal experiences of what is it to be black in America must be heard to understand the higher truth that only blacks can know. If this knowledge conflicts with evidence or the results of objective reasoning, the higher black truth must prevail.
Finally, Ethnic Gnosticism uses storytelling as truth. This involves telling stories along with first-hand accounts (that support the story) to convey the reality of an experience. This was seen in the stories that were circulated after the Breonna Taylor decision. The story, in their mind, is more truthful than the evidence. We continue to hear the same discredited stories in case after case involving black people.
From my guilt-ridden white perspective, this seems like the current version of telling a lie long enough and people will believe it. Next week
we’ll look at what the Bible has to say about all this.
ON THE LIGHTER SIDE
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