Communication, Race, and Culture (Part 4: An Ode to Critical Theory)

Communication, Race, and Culture (Part 4: An Ode to Critical Theory)

Here is my fourth and final post on Communication, Race, and Culture, in the form of a poem I recently wrote. (I would ask you to read it in the context of the three previous posts: part 1, part 2, and part 3). You may agree or disagree with my sentiments, but it is my honest attempt to process what I'm experiencing in our national debate. (If you are unfamiliar with the tenets of Critical Theory, you can read a clear critique called The Incompatibility of Critical Theory and Christianity here and a longer critique here).

An Ode to Critical Theory

(A slightly-satirical, culturally-incorrect poem by an exhausted, white, old, cisgender, heteronormative, Christian male missionary, who is supposed to be quiet.)

¹My mind is cramped and cluttered,
Like the shelves in my garage;
My gray matter’s heavy laden
By racial tweets in camouflage.

²Synapses fire out-of-sequence,
Race has left my mind a mess;
Vitriol from ev’ry corner
Leaves my heart in deep distress.

³I’m told to check my priv’lege,
Which they say – illicit be;
But if I’m mute until I’m ready,
My great sin: complicity.

⁴While some demand my backing,
Others scold, “Don’t make a peep,”
My job – to sit in silence,
Intersectional defeat.

⁵Who can quiet this cacophony
That paralyzes me?
Wokeness is the orthodoxy
Demanding pow’r in equity.

⁶Who are these verbal vandals,
Who divide us with their clout?
Boist’rous bullies who keep barking,
“Join us, or, get cancelled out!”

“You must give up your power,
More melanin dictates all;
You have had your turn for cent’ries,
Now the guillotine must fall.”

⁸Woke say white folks are racist,
N’er a black man ever be,
‘less his name be Uncle Thomas
Pushing meritocracy.

⁹Grievous are these new taskmasters
Who demand my shibboleth,
Be pronounced in sanctioned cadence,
Their ideology of death.

¹⁰CRT gives definition
To this partiality,
I’m defined by unpicked groupings,
No individuality.

¹¹“Your voice and wrested power
Based upon your tone of skin
Could there be a racist premise
Any clearer than this sin?

¹²In the name of Social Justice,
Revolution’s underway,
But I wonder where it leads us,
And what each of us will pay?

¹³The mosaic God intended,
Multi-colored gems of glass;
Mankind’s beauty held such promise
‘til we sank in this morass.

¹⁴So let us turn the corner,
Find solutions, after all,
To our Portlands and our “Lou'villes”
And Twin Cities filled with gall.

¹⁵Jeremiah quotes God plainly,
“To defend the Poor – in need,
Do what’s right and do it justly,

That’s the proof of knowing Me.”¹

¹⁶Jesus added, “Love your neighbor,
As yourself,”
and even more;²
“Love your enemy and pray for him,”³
Though he thrust upon you – war.

¹⁷The only hope still standing:
“Let’s make hostiles into kin;”
This new family’s peace is purchased
By the One who died for sin.

¹⁸Jesus is the only rescue,
Who can save from prejudice,
What we now blame on systemic,
Is a snake named Nemesis.

¹⁹There’s no unity in fighting,
There’s no equity in greed,
I’m not talking ‘bout your neighbor,
It is you with whom I plead.

²⁰So let me end this Ode to
A weak theory – critical;
Which divides men into factions
And whose end, tyrannical.

¹ Jeremiah 22:15b-16
² Mark 12:30-31
³ Matthew 5:44
Ephesians 2:14-19

[This concludes my sparse, four-part series on Communication, Race, and our Cultural Moment. I hope it has engaged your mind and heart, without stirring rancor. Let's continue to keep Jesus and His Word as the main thing.]