Bethel Weekly Highlights

Discussion of “The New Jim Crow” by Michelle Alexander is underway now at 9:00 AM on Sundays, and it's not too late to join in. Books are available in the church office for $12.00.

February 12, 2017 Chapters 4 & 5

These chapters illustrate that overt racial hostility is not the most insidious attribute of this process of otherization.

Dehumanization: What happens when we begin to view people as less than human, as shameful or characterless? What parallels between the “get tough” movement aimed at immigrants and the “get tough” laws aimed at African Americans?

Human Rights: Laws that discriminate in employment, housing, education, and public benefits make it difficult if not impossible, for people to find work in the legal economy, and greatly increase the likelihood of repeated offence. Are these laws necessary? Under what circumstances? In certain professions? For how long?

Shame, White Privilege and Human Failings: What can we do to address the shame and self-hatred that keeps communities impacted by mass incarceration divided? What can be done to cultivate more concern, understanding, and cooperation across racial lines? As we are all sinners and have failings, do you agree that in order to end mass incarceration, a cultural shift is needed? Do you agree that mass incarceration is rooted in racial indifference – a lack of care and concern across lines of race and class?