by Keith Tucci, NRP Apostolic Team Leader
What is a protest? Pro means to go before. Test means to examine. Protest is to lead the way, to bring examination to an event or a circumstance. Having some experience and having studied historic public dissent as to what would be classified as a protest, I can speak to it with some confidence.
Any time the conduct of the demonstration or those involved overshadow the central issue, the message is lost. In the prolife world, it is non-stop work to keep the message about the unborn children and to get people to see the humanity of the child. You can be the judge as to whether the present riots have made the victims of police violence more human. I think not. The conversation is no longer focused on George Floyd, his life, and needless death. Instead, we are talking about the violence we are witnessing against other innocent people.
The issue is not merely race, it is dehumanization. Police brutality is not reserved for minorities. The police forces across America’s urban areas are the most ethnically diverse institutions we have. In most every urban area, the police force has a higher percentage of minorities than the population, with many in executive and leadership positions. The real issue we are dealing with is a heavy-handed government with no accountability.
Interestingly, many of those who are protesting support the continual reach of government into our lives. They fail to see the connection of unaccountable government to unaccountable police departments. The Democratic-controlled establishment of Hennepin County clearly exhibited this very point by its arrogance and lack of action that precipitated all of this. Their failure to act is a reflection of this “government knows best” mentality.
Those who unfactually suggest that violence has led to positive change need to reread history. The Revolutionary War and the Civil War were lost by the sides that fired the first shot and by those who believed they could exert their will over others. The civil rights movement lost much of its influence and momentum after Martin Luther King Jr’s murder. This is, in large part, because of riots and violence to protest his murder. The fallout of those riots simply produced another generation of fresh prejudice. Those who ultimately benefit are the ring leaders, not those who are left to pick up the pieces and now must live under the shadow of the destruction they have been a part of.
Jesus is the Prince of Peace. Human beings who reject Him and even mock His ways are proving the futility of life without God. Justice starts when we defer to our Maker and His ways.