Via Campus Reform:
Fordham University last week touted a new book that examines the connection between “Christianity, racism, and religious diversity in America.”
Written by Fordham professor of Theology Jeannine Hill Fletcher, the work “proposes strategies that will help foster racial healing in America, the first of which is to demand of white Christians that they accept their responsibility for racist policies and structural discrimination in America.”
The author told Fordham News that her studies have led her to realize that “the ideology of Christian supremacy was actually a piece that informed legislation that dispossessed native people.”
To support her position, Hill Fletcher references the Doctrine of Discovery: a belief that Christian settlers had the right to claim the land of non-Christians, but not land inhabited by fellow Christians. The professor argues that the doctrine’s historical use to deny Native Americans’ right to land does not only prove the existence of religious intolerance, but also of racism.
“In most cases, you can’t trace a direct cause from something a theologian says to this kind of practical output,” she observes. “But theologians have always had the ability to lend symbolic capital to ideas. These ideas can create conditions [that] have real-life effects.”