Black Power and the American Christ

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Abstract

The Christian Century published this article by historian and civil rights activist Vincent Harding in its June 4, 1967 issue. In the essay, Harding, friend, associate, and speech writer for Dr. King, claims that Eurocentric Christianity antagonized the Black Power Movement. He challenges the integrity of white Christians who claim to support "progress for the Negro," while encouraging African Americans to prolong their suffering and use the "white Christ to do it." Harding asserts that the white and black Christians who encourage this psuedo-Christian view are "blasphemers" who have turned Christ into an "American mascot." He states, "It may be that America must now stand under the most profound and damning judgment for having turned the redeeming lover of all men into a white, middle-class burner of children and destroyer of the revolutions of the oppressed."

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