- Rev. Stacy Spencer
Are you your brothers keeper?
Are you your brothers keeper?
Justice for Tyre Nichols
“Afterward the Lord asked Cain, “Where is your brother? Where is Abel?” “I don’t know,” Cain responded. “Am I my brother’s guardian?” But the Lord said, “What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground!” Genesis 4:9-10 NLT
My heart is heavy today as we await the release of the video from the murder of Tyre Nichols. This 29 year old father of a 4 year old son was coming home from work when he was pulled over for a traffic stop and beaten to death. Attorney Ben Crump, who viewed the horrific video said Tyre kept asking, “what did I do?” That question has not been answered.
The next question we need answered is what are we going to do about this injustice?
I think what hurts me the most was the fact that five black men who were supposed to serve and protect beat another innocent, unarmed, black man to death during the month we were supposed to be celebrating Dr. Martin Luther King, He’s life and legacy.
We have so internalized the pedagogy of racism that we do not believe that we are our bothers keeper. Like Cain who killed his own brother out of jealousy so now we have Tyre’s blood crying out from the ground asking, “what did I do?”
When they release that video tonight all of us must answer the question, “am I my brothers keeper?” What will we do to uproot the evil of police brutality and systemic racism in the city of Memphis?
Let’s pray for God’s spirit to intervene and to lead us as we express our grief and outrage.
Be angry and sin not. We are all on bated breath awaiting the horror of this video but we can make up our minds now how we will respond. Restorative Justice calls us to uproot the evil and to rebuild something better in its place
Demand police reform that includes but not limited to the cessation of unmarked police cars doing traffic stops, the use of body cameras, training on deescalation. Corruption has no color and systemic racism is the root of this hate that must be snatched up.
We need to join the fight of those in our city who are fighting for Justice. There are many grassroots activists in our city that are doing the work. It doesn’t matter who gets the credit as long as God gets the glory. As a partner of MICAH (Memphis Interfaith Coalition for Action and Hope) I encourage you to join our work for equity economically, educationally, and racially.
Every church should go out and engage their neighborhood. We can change our city by engaging the people in our neighborhoods through service and hold police officers and elected officials accountable.
Am I my brothers and sisters keeper?
Yes I am! I love Memphis!
I believe that our city can experience transformation.
I believe we can move from protest to progress.
I believe that every citizen deserves to be protected.
I believe that poverty should be eradicated through equitable education for our children and living wages for our workers.
I believe that we will win if we keep the faith and fight for Justice.
Dr. Rev. Stacy L. Spencer
Senior Pastor at New Direction Christian Church