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There seems to be a common misconception that the concern about Critical Theory in the church is *really* about promoting Trumpism and right-wing politics. See the discussion in this thread with @lukestamps. Allow me to offer a better explanation. 1/

First, some backstory. I was staunchly #NeverTrump during the 2016 election. As a conservative living in California at the time, I felt caught in between a country tearing itself apart. As a result, I developed a strong burden to work on healing the divide. 2/
My Christian convictions prevented me from finding common cause with those across the divide on many if not most cultural issues. Racial issues, however, seemed like a good opportunity for bridge-building. 3/
When the NFL kneeling controversy erupted, I took the opportunity to lean in and listen. I started with a post on Facebook. "Help me understand what this is about." I received a flood of responses recommending books, documentaries, articles, etc. 4/
That began my journey. I joined a racial justice group on FB and began educating myself. This is where I first started hearing terms like Whiteness, White Privilege, POC, Woke, White Fragility. I dutifully observed the six-month ban on new white members commenting. 5/
During that time I started to notice a couple of things.
1) There was no disagreement allowed. Doing so was evidence of white fragility. Even simple questions for clarification were met with suspicion and instruction to "check your privilege" or "do your homework". 6/
2) Some of the church friends who recommended the FB group began to embrace progressive theology. Discussion of white privilege led to male privilege which led to hetero privilege. Biblical norms and hierarchies were suddenly products of the oppressive societies of the time. 7/
Both of these phenomena concerned me. I had also started to see certain friends & family become sympathetic to the alt-right. Weary of being labeled racist and accused of enjoying a privilege they just didn't seem to experience, a group purported to defend them was appealing. 8/
At this point, it seemed to me that, rather than building bridges, these concepts were furthering the divide and paving the road to liberal theology. This led me to further research where these concepts had originated. That's when I discovered Critical Theory. 9/
.@NeilShenvi has done a tremendous job explaining CT, so I'll direct you to his work rather than offer my own explanation. Needless to say, it became apparent to me that CT was the ideology behind the problems I was seeing. 10/
Saddened that my attempts to understand and find common ground had unearthed additional problems, I completely pulled back from the conversation until I started seeing these same concepts creep into the church. 11/
By this time, the events at Evergreen State College had occurred. (Check out the three-part documentary about this by @MikeNayna if you're unfamiliar.) Having vividly seen the fruit of this ideology, I didn't want to see it wreak havoc in the church. 12/
I reluctantly began to speak up, knowing that in doing so I was putting my white fragility on display and inviting the label of racist. 13/
Last night, in our discussion, @lukestamps made this statement: 14/

To the contrary, I (and many others with similar journeys that I've met through this debate) want three things. 15/
1) To protect Christian liberty to disagree. We can't make progress on these issues if there is only one acceptable narrative. This isn't enforcing a conservative political philosophy on AAs (which aren't a monolith), but rather acknowledging that faithful Xians can disagree. 16/
For example, @CarlEllisJr is one of the best voices speaking to these issues, but because he sees the problems as largely cultural he gets accused of siding with racists. See this tweet and the response from @AlsoACarpenter 17/
Additionally, outside the church, the alarm is being sounded by many like @BretWeinstein, @ConceptualJames, and @peterboghossian who aren't conservative. This is about preserving our ability to disagree. 18/
2) To prevent CT from eroding people's confidence in scripture. If everything presented to us is the product of cultural hegemony in order to preserve privilege, it's only a matter of time before some begin applying the tools of CT to the Bible. 19/
Indeed, in many of the recent de-conversion stories and instances of Xians embracing progressive theology, we hear many terms derived from CT. Just listen to the recent @UnbelievableJB discussion with Lisa Gungor and @alisachilders to hear how LG deconstructed her faith. 20/
When @tomascol and others call CT a Trojan Horse, this is what they mean. It's not that those utilizing CT are trying to smuggle in ideas destructive to the church. I firmly believe most are well-intentioned, but these ideas when applied consistently are dangerous. 21/
3) Lastly, I hope to avert a white backlash in our churches that would drive them further into the arms of Trump and the alt-right. You hear it all the time. He fights. Most whites aren't going to acquiesce and confess their privilege. That's mostly a liberal elite phenomenon. 22
People in the pews are used to ignoring these accusations from the media, but when it shows up in their churches it's not going to bring about the intended reconciliation. Instead of demanding repentance like the unforgiving servant, we should be a people of forgiveness. 23/
I hope that helps explain what motivates a lot of us with concerns about the potential effects of CT in the church. 24/
As to why CT has begun to be utilized within the church, I have some theories (none of them involve a conspiracy of secret Marxists!), but that will have to wait for another thread. Thanks for reading this one. 25/25
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