Tears We Cannot Stop

 

Tears We Cannot Stop, A Sermon to White America, by Michael Eric Dyson, history, race, Donald TrumpTears We Cannot Stop

A Sermon to White America

by Michael Eric Dyson

St. Martin’s Press

Hardcover, $24.99

202 pages

ISBN: 978-1-250-13599-5

Book Review by Kam Williams

“America is in trouble, and a lot of that trouble–perhaps most of it–has to do with race. Everywhere we turn, there is discord, division, death and destruction.

When we survey the land, we see a country full of suffering that it cannot fully understand, and a history that it can no longer deny. Slavery casts a long shadow across our lives…

Black and white people… seem to occupy different universes with worldviews that are fatally opposed to one another… What, then, can we do?

What I need to say can only be said as a sermon… I offer this sermon to you, my dear white friends… I do so in the interest of healing our our nation through honest, often blunt, talk… Without white America wrestling with these truths and confronting these realities, we may not survive.

To paraphrase the Bible, to whom much is given, much is expected. And, you my friends, have been given so much. And the Lord knows, what wasn’t given, you simply took, took, and took, and took.

But the time is here for reckoning with the past… and moving together to redeem the nation for the future.”

— Excerpted from the Chapter 1, “Call to Worship” (pages 3-7)

Michael Eric Dyson teaches Sociology at Georgetown University, and is the prolific author of 20 best-sellers and a popular face on the TV talk show circuit. Many might forget that Professor Dyson got his doctorate in Religion from Princeton University.

In his new book, Tears We Cannot Stop, he reminds us that, “Although I am a scholar, a cultural and political critic, and a social activist, I am, before, and above anything else, an ordained Baptist minister.” That helps explain the profusion of captivating, flowery rhetoric whenever the brother’s been handed a microphone.

While his previous works were aimed at a black audience, this is his first intended to be read by whites. It is also written in a unique literary style, namely, as a sermon designed to keep Caucasians standing on their feet like an inspired  congregation of holy rollers.

The chapters are even laid out like a church service, starting with the “Call to Worship,” followed by “Hymns

Tears We Cannot Stop, A Sermon to White America, by Michael Eric Dyson, history, race, Donald Trump

Author: Michael Eric Dyson

of Praise,” an “Invocation,” and the “Scripture Reading” leading to the “Sermon,” and concluding with the “Benediction.” The meat of the message can be found in the Sermon section which opens with the iconoclastic suggestion that there is no such thing as a white race.

Professor Dyson’s point there is that whiteness is an arbitrary (as opposed to a scientific) construct which affords one group advantages and privileges at the expense of others. He argues that “whiteness is made up, and that white history disguised as American history is a fantasy, as much a fantasy as white superiority and white purity.”

If I were Dyson, I wouldn’t be holding my breath for a positive reception from his intended audience, given the ascension of Donald Trump and the celebration of rednecks in the runaway best seller, Hillbilly Elegy. He might be better off redirecting his sermon to the African-American community and changing his incendiary opus’ subtitle to “Preaching to the Choir!”

Can I get an “Amen!”

To order a copy of Tears We Cannot Stop, visit: https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1250135990/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20

Entertainment

Top Ten DVD List for July 25, 2017

  This Week’s DVD Releases by Kam Williams Top Ten DVD List for July 25, 2017                       Girls: The Final Season [Lena Dunham & Company's Swan Song] https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B06Y19ZKW9/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20 Art and Heart [The World of Isaiah … [Read More its Good for You...]

Books

Book of Black Heroes

  Book of Black Heroes Political Leaders Past and Present by Gil L. Robertson, IV Foreword by Myrlie Evers-Williams Just Us Books Paperback, $12.95 80 pages ISBN: 978-1-933491-21-9 Book Review by Kam Williams “The first African-American political leaders began to serve following the Civil War...Known as Reconstruction, this period … [Read More its Good for You...]

Art

The Day After the Day Of

  The Day After the Day Of by Paul Ilechko   The sky sheds its tears. This morning is the morning of the day after. The day of mourning, the day after the day of.  I beseech the sky to shed tears in order to wash away the tears on my face.   This is the first day of the time after. This is the beginning of a new time, the … [Read More its Good for You...]

Real Estate

Real Estate: Refinancing Rates on the Rise in 2017

  Real Estate: Refinancing Rates on the Rise in 2017 by Amy Lignor   The term ‘meteoric rise’ usually applies to something fun. Think: A Hollywood actor who has been ‘discovered.’) Unfortunately, when it comes to this article, ‘meteoric rise’ is something that will not bring a smile to one’s face. To put it simply, if you wish to refinance … [Read More its Good for You...]

Lifestyle

Healthy Living: The Cellphone Guide

  Healthy Living: The Cellphone Guide by Amy Lignor   Much like the political realm, there will always be debates and disagreements when it comes to the technological realm—especially when it comes to your health versus the almighty cellphone. Now, it is a fact that communication in the 21st century literally brought about a … [Read More its Good for You...]

Outdoors

Mollie Brings 2017 Gulf Coast Triple Crown Championship to Florida

  Mollie Brings 2017 Gulf Coast Triple Crown Championship to Florida   The Wharf, Orange Beach, Alabama: For the first time in its seven-year history, a charter boat has won the prestigious Gulf Coast Triple Crown Championship. Mollie, a 66 G&S operated by Capt. Jeff Shoults of Destin, Florida, captured the title after competing in the Blue … [Read More its Good for You...]

Sports

Esports on a Meteoric Rise in 2017

  Esports on a Meteoric Rise in 2017 by Amy Lignor   Okay…we all know that football is America’s favorite sport. Or…is it? NASCAR has a wide following. People still love to go to the ballpark in the lazy summer days to watch a Yankee hit a homerun. There are those who love to practically melt in the summer watching the Williams’ … [Read More its Good for You...]

Business

Is Social Media Still Growing?

  Is Social Media Still Growing? by Amy Lignor   It was in 1999, Bill Gates wrote a book titled, “Business @ the Speed of Thought.” Within these pages, the man who became the computer world’s wizard made massively bold predictions that, at the time, sounded ridiculous and outrageous to those who read them. But when you look at how the … [Read More its Good for You...]

Travel

Vacation Locations: Knowledge is Fun Too!

  Vacation Locations: Knowledge is Fun Too! by Amy Lignor   Most children (and adults, too) will either roll their eyes or sigh when, while speaking about vacation locations, the word “learning” just happens to be mentioned. Yes, it is a fact that school trips take all of us during our younger years to everything from museums to … [Read More its Good for You...]