Why Pope Francis’ visit was important for Black Lives Matter

Pope Francis and President Obama (Photo Source: YouTube-WhiteHouse.gov)
Pope Francis and President Obama (Photo source: YouTube-WhiteHouse.gov)

The visit of Pope Francis to the United States excited Catholics and non-Catholics alike this past week. His message was not what many conservative Republicans wanted to hear as he spoke of the culture of consumerism in the body of the church as well as an order for the clergy to be more compassionate and pray for their congregation.  Over three million Blacks in the United States are Catholic and Blacks as a whole have a long history with the church.

As native people were enslaved both in the Americas and Africa, they were blessed by priests and given Christian names and declared Catholic.

Pope John Paul II during a visit to Cameroon spoke of the cruelty of the slave trade and the need for compassion and the need to treat others “as their brother, their neighbor.” He further stated, “In the course of history, men belonging to Christian nations did not always do this, and we ask pardon from our African brothers who suffered so much because of the trade in Blacks.”

Last week, Pope Francis addressed the U.S. Congress and spoke about racial inequality, infuriating some conservatives by quoting Dr. Martin L. King Jr. and implying he agreed with the Black Lives Matter movement. “All political activity must serve and promote the good of the human person and be based on respect for his or her dignity. Here, too, I think of the march which Martin Luther King led from Selma to Montgomery 50 years ago as part of the campaign to fulfill his dream of full civil and political rights for African Americans. That dream continues to inspire us all. I am happy that America continues to be, for many, a land of dreams — dreams which lead to action, to participation, to commitment. Dreams which awaken what is deepest and truest in the life of a people,” he said.

The visit of Pope Francis gave a glimpse into his vision of a more inclusive Catholic Church and the acceptance of diversity and love of all humanity. The fact that this occurred under the leadership of President Obama increases the significance of the papal visit.

 

 

Mo Barnes
Mo Barnes

"Mo Betta" Maurice "Mo" Barnes is a graduate of Morehouse College and Political Scientist based in Atlanta. Mo is also a Blues musician.

1 Comment
  1. During a February 2014 on-air discussion about “Gangsta Culture” with Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett (Google search discussion), Bill O’Reilly intelligently and compassionately talks about America’s expanding and shameful National Epidemic of Child Abuse & Neglect, aka Poverty, that for decades has deprived countless children from experiencing and enjoying a safe, fairly happy American kid childhood.

    Besides O’Reilly and Milwaukee Sheriff David Clarke, how many Americans are addressing this topic that is at the core of most all the issues and social problems many Americans of African descent are today experiencing?

    Black Lives Matter; Take Pride In Parenting; End Our National Epidemic of Child Abuse and Neglect; End Community Violence & Police Fear

    Speaking At The Eulogy For The Honorable Reverend Clementa Pinckney, President Barack Obama said:

    “Perhaps it causes us to examine what we’re doing to cause some of our children to hate.” (Applause.)

    Video Excerpt from Obama Remarks Search YouTube: /watch?v=2T_GwYI7MnQ

    With all due respect to my American neighbors supporting the Black Lives Matter movement, I believe your cause would better serve all Americans if your organization were to honestly, openly and compassionately address our National Epidemic of Child Abuse and Neglect, aka Poverty that for decades has deprived untold numbers of depressed children from experiencing and enjoying a safe, fairly happy American kid childhood.

    I strongly suggest members of the Black Lives Matter target communities that have embraced The Street Culture Baltimore Mom of The Year Toya Graham desperately struggles to keep her son from embracing.

    In his 2015 Grammy award winning Rap Performance titled “I”, Kendrick Lamar writes, “I’ve been dealing with depression ever since an adolescent.”

    During a January 20, 2011 LAWeekly interview (Google search) Kendrick, born in 1987, the same year songwriter Suzanne Vega wrote a song about child abuse and *VICTIM DENIAL* that was nominated for a Grammy award, he told the interviewer:

    “Lamar’s parents moved from Chicago to Compton in 1984 with all of $500 in their pockets. “My mom’s one of 13 [THIRTEEN] siblings, and they all got SIX kids, and till I was 13 everybody was in Compton,” he says.”

    “I’m 6 years old, seein’ my uncles playing with shotguns, sellin’ dope in front of the apartment. My moms and pops never said nothing, ’cause they were young and living wild, too. I got about 15 stories like ‘Average Joe.'”

    It seems evident to me Kendrick identified the source of his depression, the roots of poverty, the child abuse/maltreatment that prevented him, his brothers, sisters, cousins, neighborhood friends, elementary and JHS classmates from enjoying a fairly happy, safe Average Joe and Josie American kid childhood.

    Seems the adults responsible for raising the children in Kendrick’s immediate and extended family placed obstacles in their children’s way, causing their kids to deal with challenges and stresses young minds are not prepared to deal with….nor should they or any other children be exposed to and have to deal with.

    It seems evident to me these PARENTAL INTRODUCED obstacles and challenges cause some developing children’s minds to become tormented and go haywire, not knowing OR NOT CARING ABOUT right from wrong…because as they mature, young victims of child abuse realize their parents introduced them to a life of pain and struggle, totally unlike the mostly safe, happy life the media showed them many American kids were enjoying. RESENTMENT

    I cannot speak for anyone else, but if I was raised in Kendrick’s family I would most likely be silently peeved at my parents for being immature irresponsible “living wild” adults who deprived me of a safe, happy childhood.

    Though like many victims of child abuse, most likely I would deny my parents harmed me, seeking to blame others for the pain my parents caused to me.

    I wonder how little Kendrick and his classmates reacted when their elementary school teacher introduced the DARE presenter and they learned about the real dangers of drugs and how they harm people, including their parents? *Cognitive Dissonance*

    In a Oct 25, 2012, LAWeekly interview (Google search) Kendrick talks about being a SIX-YEAR-OLD child who was not able to trust and rely on his mom…essentially he speaks about being emotionally abandon by his own mom.

    Growing up during the 60-70s I listened to virtually ALL American music artists of African descent writing songs admiring, praising, respecting and loving the maternal half of our population.

    I am curious to know if members and supporters of the Black Lives Matter movement have wondered why for the past three decades, many popular American music performers of African descent have been characterizing the maternal half of our population as *itches and *hores…essentially less than human creatures or people not worthy of respect?

    Honestly, I have a feeling most BLM supporters don’t have the strength or will to face the truth about who is responsible for filling our prisons with depressed, angry, frustrated teens and young men who were victims of early childhood abuse and neglect at the hands of immature teen girls and women who irresponsibly begin building families before acquiring the skills, PATIENCE and means to properly raise a fairly happy American kid who enjoys a Safe Fun Street to play in.

    Milwaukee Sheriff David Clarke offers sound advice to all Americans, “Fix the ghetto!”

    I’m with Sheriff Clarke. I believe we also need to re-examine society’s child protection and welfare laws.

    I am hoping when camera technology proves its mettle in protecting police officers, as well as identifying officers who require further training or officers who have no business serving the public in a LE capacity, we will use that same technology to protect children by monitoring the common area of homes in which caregivers have established a track record for failing to properly raise, nurture and/or supervise their children.

    Especially in communities with higher crime rates where kids are more often exposed to some/many depressed or “living wild” neighbors with a mindset for lawlessness.

    Recently I watched a video that saddened me as well as enlightened me when I learned child welfare investigators test the hair of child abuse victims for “ambient” exposure to drugs.

    Holy smokes, the numbers were critical. At the least cameras would expose signs of intoxication in homes identified as requiring extra care to prevent children from being emotionally and or physically harmed.

    If we do not take affirmative action to protect children, “the ghetto” will continue to thrive, fueled by poor parenting, resulting with depressed kids maturing into depressed teens and adults who often vent their angers and frustrations on their peaceful neighbors, instead of the person(s) responsible for introducing them to a life of hardship, pain and struggle.

    This video depicts horrific examples of men who were victims of childhood abuse and neglect, conditioning a young teen to embrace the criminal, anti-social ‘Street Culture’ Baltimore Mom of The Year failed to protect her teen son from…not to mention representing the fear peaceful people living and WORKING in the community experience knowing depressed, angry, unpredictable teens and young adults need to vent their angers and frustrations for being introduced to a life of pain and struggle by irresponsible, “living wild” single moms and/or dads.

    Search youtube; /watch?v=C3ChOLiJa8k

    This is a recorded act of criminal child abuse, maltreatment and violence against…”A little girl, catching a cool breeze from an air conditioning unit in the yard, was blindsided by another child about her same age, who had evidently had some practice with fighting fierce. The small victim wasn’t alone, as there were plenty of nearby witnesses, who could have protected her but didn’t because they were too busy recording the brutal beat down and encouraging it.” | Written By Amanda Shea

    hxxp://madworldnews[dot]com/video-little-girl-gets-beating/

    On MAY 18, 2015 The New York Times reports:

    Rise in Suicide by Black Children Surprises Researchers
    By SABRINA TAVERNISE

    Who is responsible for traumatizing children to the point young kids believe their lives are not worth living?

    With all due respect to my American neighbors of African descent, the oppression of humans that led to racism and slavery has largely been replaced with a new form of human oppression that impedes and deprives many American children from experiencing a safe, fairly happy American kid childhood.

    #TakePrideInParenting
    #EndChildAbuseNeglect
    #ProtectKidsFromIrresponsibleCaregivers

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