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In Whose Country Do We Really Live?

Black news - commentary on propaganda"The earth is the Lords and all that is in it, the world , and those who live in it; for he has founded it on the seas, and established it on the rivers." (Psalm 24:1-2, NRSV)

In the last few weeks anti-Obama billboards have appeared throughout the Georgia (Atlanta) area and in the mid-west. One billboard appearing in Mason City, Iowa, shows Obama along side Adolph Hitler and Vladimir Lenin in a type of fear smearing campaign. The billboard cites Obama as a Socialist Democrat with the heading, "Radical Leaders Prey on the Fearful and Naive."

This propaganda is reminiscent of Hitler's Third Reich campaigns that raised societal suspicion and hatred of the German and continental European Jewish populate. In the case of this regime's social policy, the country belonged to the Aryan - blond haired, blue eyed populate. The extreme and tragic results of these policies have been learned from history; however, the lesson of solidarity over against the politics of European hegemony has yet to be rooted out.

Whose country is this really? I am reminded that it was the enslaved Africans on American soil who cultivated and farmed the American south and heartlands for food. Many of the structures in the nations Capitol (including the Capitol itself and the architectual design of D. C.) were constructed by these early Black Americans. Others even contributed to the functionality of this nation including the Chinese workers who helped to lay the first railroad tracks across America.

In the above Psalm passage, the suggestion that all belong to the Lord including the earth, is restated in the New Testament Gospel of John's account, in Chapter 1:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God . . . he was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. (John 1:1, 10, NRSV)

The current state of U.S. consciousness and politics either ignores or is ignorant to God's word. Many would assert that we all live in a White Anglo Saxon Protestant society and reality. This consciousness is most evident and comes out in light of the Obama presidency. Seemingly every policy and decision is contested and reflects the heart and belief of many in our country. Neither this or a left winged radical all inclusive policy appears to be the reality of the Lord. In light of what is known in scripture, what can be a conscious and Godly response to the Lord's reality? The earth and all that are within it belong to the Lord. We ourselves belong to the Lord. In light of this reality, in whose country do we really live?

[Dr. Jamal-Dominique Hopkins is Scholar-in-Residence at St. Paul A.M.E. Church in Atlanta, GA and is a Professor at the Interdenominational Theological Center also in Atlanta. He is the author of "Ecclesiastes" in the African Bible: Reading Israel's Scriptures through Africa and the African Diaspora (Fortress Press), 2009, and "Duty or Responsibility? The African American Evangelical's Identity" in the Journal of African American Christian Thought 1 (2009). Hopkins is available for preaching, lecturing, speaking or conducting workshops or seminars. You may contact him at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .]


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