Medium Post 12/02/20
Before engaging in this weeks materials, our class has discussed the rise of secularism in both the government and in social activism. We specifically talked about the secularism in the BLM movement today and how it allows for the inclusion of more groups of people. Similarly, this weeks materials focused on the rise of secularism and how it has shaped the current structure of American society and social activism.
In the Dubler and Lloyd piece, Kilpatrick is described as being able to sway the audience away from Dr. King’s ideas of moral law. While King determined that breaking unjust laws was ultimately justified due to a higher moral law determined by god, Kilpatrick argued that from the perspective of a white southerner, the civil rights movement was about breaking laws. I thought it was interesting how King’s idea of a higher “moral law” which supersedes all state laws can be construed as just one’s own opinion on what is wrong and what is right. Since people may not be able to agree on a higher “moral law” it is easy to see how the laws that are in place by the state can become a higher “moral law”. I think this is evident in the Robert Jeffress video that we watched in class. The upholding of the state law takes on a new almost religious importance, and one’s own morality is based on following the state laws. Being a person of virtue for evangelicals seems to be about following the laws that are in place which in turn means respecting the authority of God.
I believe that understanding secularism and its affects on society is important for the BLM movement. The understanding that the state laws have a sort of religious value to some may help the movement make strides in understanding how to dismantle an inherently flawed system.