Sometimes, Y’all it is helpful to write raw, get it down & push it out there. Usually, when I take part in Heather of the EO’s Just Write’s it’s about the mundane of life so no one gives a flip. Ahh, but yesterday I manage to cull together my racism, my anger towards toxic, angry white feminist, middle class women, Dave Ramsey, wealth, the poor & prolly a few other things too.
Perhaps, that post could have been sat on for a day or two. Edited, etc. Perhaps. I’m torn about it because I didn’t say anything -in hind sight- that I disagree with today. It’s that the emotions were so IN-YO-FACE it’s hard to pull out the good.
Since I am calm and cozy today with Rhysie snuggled under my arm I thought I’d give some clarifications that may be helpful…
1. Honest to blog, I didn’t know about Rachel Held Evans’ CNN post RE: Dave Ramsey until late last night when a friend texted me, “how did RHE respond to your post since she started this dialogue?” My post was in no way a back-handed dis of RHE. I would never do that. I would have linked to her post if I was calling out that post, but as it stands I didn’t even know about it.
2. After my post went up Micah texted me that he reconciled with the woman on Twitter who had triggered the response in me. I was glad to hear that. Know this though: what she did, that she later apologized for was a tip of the iceberg moment for me. It wasn’t merely her that inspired that post –I’m not that crazy. It was all of the interactions on Twitter for the past two years that I’ve seen of angry, white, feminist, women that have appalled me. Her one tweet simply pushed me over the edge. I am extremely happy to know she & Micah pursued reconciliation.
3. I am grateful for angry, white, feminist women. They give a voice to the powerless & care for vulnerable populations which directly at the center of my core life mission & beliefs.
4. I am grateful that angry, white, feminist women have found a voice and a community through the joint mission of feminism. That’s important & it’s key for social change. And who doesn’t need community? Who doesn’t need partners in crime?
5. I, Grace Biskie am NEVA EVA EVA EVA allowed to spew hate, or mean judge-y, rage-y racism without rebuke or correction. My post was not my space to be a bitch about angry, white, feminist women. If it were, it would be unacceptable to me. None of us who claim to follow Jesus are allowed to sit in our anger until it festers into hate and rage and demeaning actions. No. No. No. No.
My post was -as I stated- an off the cuff hastily written diatribe about how one chick on Twitter angered me, toxic, angry Feminists anger me, Christians trying to take down Dave Ramsey angered me, racism angered me & even I, anger me. As I stated, I keep bringing it to God & inviting Jesus into my confusion because I, Grace Biskie am not allowed to walk around as a functioning racist and feminism hater. That makes me no sense, as a Jesus follower it stands in direct opposition to Jesus’ teachings. Yes, the post was a challenge post, but it was also a CONFESSIONAL post. I am screwed up, y’all. On that issue, I’ve never claimed to be anything different.
6. In the same way, I expect that any self-described angry, white, feminist woman who claims to follow Jesus would follow those same principles. Yes, be angry about injustice, lies, etc. but don’t justify it with, “I’m an angry white feminist & I have a voice.” That sentiment is what I’ve seen over and over again which has piled anger on top of anger for the past couple of years. To be fair, I’ve seen that response in general not amongst Christian Feminists per se.
However, what’s been disheartening is seeing more and more Christian feminists take on that response, as if being a feminist gives license to be unhelpful, toxic or mean. No. I’m sorry. No one who claims to follow Jesus gets to “use their voice” or platform without accountability. That’s crazy talk. If I ever start losing my mind and being hateful to people shut my ass down. I don’t deserve a platform if I can’t love people. I believe Paul called that “a banging gong.”
7. OF COURSE I don’t agree with everything Dave Ramsey says, but I have also learned this secret of adulthood: EAT THE MEAT & SPIT OUT THE BONES. Dave is doing so much good in the world for so many people I simply cannot see trying to take him down or unhelpfully compare him to prosperity preachers who are -by comparison- being SO destructive for SO many. To my core, that comparison HURTS me so much.
Again, Dave (Biskie) & I spent YEARS working with black college students, many of which who were MARRED, BROKEN & SPIT-OUT by prosperity teachings. If those same students had been following financial principles Dave Ramsey teaches they would have been in such a different place both financially & spiritually. Prosperity preaching is DESTRUCTIVE AND EVIL and an affront to MY GOD. And if anyone compares Dave Ramsey to another prosperity preacher again, I will have more to say.
Check out the comment section of yesterday’s post. My husband Dave (Davidicus) wrote a lengthy response on the difference between the teachings. He studied the prosperity gospel in depth to be able to handle all the students we were dealing with living under the weight of it.
8. There is a big difference between the prosperity gospel and wealth teaching (ala Suze Orman, Dave Ramsey). Maybe a post for a different day.
9. Lots of people in the world have weird and horrible ideas about the poor. Lots of middle to upper class Americans have HORRIBLE, GOD-AWFUL ideas about the poor and why they got there. Lots of Americans are angry about food stamps and universal health care. Lots of Americans PISS ME OFF because of how they view the poor and why the poor stay poor, etc.
But, here’s the thing: those folks are misguided and yet do very little about it or even know poor people. Dave Ramsey is actually trying to do EVERYTHING HE CAN to address this. Do you seriously want to take down the man WHO IS ACTUALLY TRYING TO HELP POOR PEOPLE? That, makes NO flipping sense to me. None. And who can say besides Dave himself what his views on the poor are? Even if we knew, he’s still actively working to deliver folks from the bondage of an unhealthy relationship to money. Again, eat the meat and spit out the bones.
*****(Edited to add: PLEASE READ my friend & former InterVarsity colleague, Joshua Settles response to my response to Rachel’s response to Dave’s response to his initial article. Joshua was able to articulate what I cannot about why Dave R. empowers the poor.)*****
10. Dave Ramsey found my post yesterday & PM’ed me that he read my blog for over an hour & to “keep writing, never stop” & that if we were ever in Nashville he’d like to meet my husband & I. It MADE MY WHOLE DAY but not for reasons you may assume. Yes, I was star struck. Yes, Dave R. has helped Dave B. & I tremendously. Obviously I respect him a great deal.
But, in part I am always grateful when any white man uses their influence or platform to encourage or lift me up. I am keenly aware of the privilege of white men and when they use it to build up, affirm and encourage black women (or other minorities) it works. White men, y’all really do have a lot of power, a lot of influence, a lot of ability to speak life and hope into people. Never believe I got here (wherever “here” is) without the advocacy of white men. It’s an ugly, hard, true truth. The only other “celebrity” in the world that comment would have meant more coming from to me is Obama. I digress.
11. Sometimes a soothing, loving Vox discussion with Sarah Bessey who literally WROTE THE BOOK on Jesus Feminism soothes all things. She gave me such wisdom on how to handle my anger, how to deal with my own emotions towards toxic, angry feminists & a myriad of other healthy, Jesus-honoring responses. Her hope, her love, her perspective on all this is so inspiring, it is so worthy of admiration. She consistently calls me to be better, live better, think better. I love her. I’m so thankful God brought her into my life through these crazy interwebs.
12. A LOT of people -black & white- PM’ed me a lot of different responses agreeing with my post. I only heard from two friends, privately, who took issue. I say this to say, please leave me a comment if you disagree. I’m not an unapproachable person. I may have communicated that. I’m sorry. The fact is, I’d love to dialogue in a healthy way.
Yesterday was the biggest day my blog has ever had yet I had very few twitter @mentions or FB tags, which made me think there was LOTS of conversations happening behind the scenes. I am very tempted to say, “see! see!” and make this prove a point about how I can’t begin to trust white feminists if they are not willing to converse with me.
After I wrote a post for A Deeper Story last year about why I’m not a Feminist I snooped around and later found about 5 conversations happening on various FB blog pages without just bringing their issues to me via comments. I wasn’t angry about that as much as I was hurt. Why not just go straight to the source & seek clarification? In any case, this is my invitation -again- to ask your questions, don’t be afraid of me. Don’t let the media make me into the “the angry black woman”caricature. Just as I’m trying -TRYING- to not let a caricaturized “angry, white feminist” crystallize in my brain.
13. I still have hope for blacks & whites.
14. I still love Jesus.
15. I still believe in reconciliation.
16. I’m still here. Still willing to dialogue. Learn. Be challenged.
17. I’m angry about injustice & mistreatment of women & the poor too.
18. I hope we can learn together how to deal with our world’s most vulnerable populations. I hope Dave Ramsey can become a great advocate, partner & friend in that journey.
19. I’m thankful for all of my advocates and friends.
Hope you all have a fantastic day.