The Rushmore Report: Three Responses to Dallas Shooting

America is still reeling from the Dallas shootings that took the lives of five police officers, wounded several others, and tore open the scab of racial tension in our country. In the aftermath of the shootings, a poll shows that people are more concerned about racial issues than at any point in the last 40 years.

How do we respond? I see three possibilities.

1. We can respond with hatred.

Dallas Police Chief Brown said the sniper (whom we won’t name here) “said he wanted to kill white people.” The killer was a former member of the Army, but somewhere things went out of control. His own parents had no idea of the demons in the man’s head. Black Lives Matter continues to stir up hatred, calling for death to white police officers, while totaling ignoring the fact that every 14 hours in Chicago, another black person is killed by another black person. And white supremacists have called for a race war. We can respond to the violence with hatred, but that’s not a good option.

2. We can do nothing.

Surely normalcy will return, right? Was this just a one-time thing? No, it was not. In the days following, police were fired upon in Washington, D.C. Small towns reported similar events. The Bible warns, “the complacency of fools destroys them” (Proverbs 1:32). All it takes for America to fall off the cliff is for good men to do nothing.

3. We can come together.

A good start was the event in Dallas Tuesday. President Obama joined with former President George W. Bush to address the city of Dallas and the nation we all love. It’s too bad it took this to bring them together. And while it is tempting to point out the hypocrisy of our national leadership on the issues of racism, let’s follow their lead in Dallas. Coming together is an option. It is the only option.

The next time you want to talk about racism, do it with someone of a different race. And end the conversation with prayer. Try getting on your knees to pray together. Wars are never fought on our knees.

A British commentator reflected on Dallas: “A democracy as racist as America will never be at peace.” Let’s prove him wrong – finally.

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