Windy City Media Group Frontpage News


home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2022-12-07



The Covenant with Black America
by Max Smith

This article shared 3705 times since Mon May 1, 2006
facebook twitter google +1 reddit email

The Covenant With Black America, a book on The New York Times' top 10 list of bestsellers in April 2006, was published by Third World Press of Chicago. It has an introduction by Tavis Smiley and a statement of purpose by Marian Wright Edelman. It is organized into 10 covenants, each one a concise essay that states facts about an issue and gives specific recommendations as to what every individual and every community can do now to solve the problem. Specific real-life examples of successful ways to solve the problem show what works now.

The Ten Covenants are as follows:

1. Securing The Right To Healthcare and Well-Being;

2. Establishing A System of Public Education In Which All Children Achieve At High Levels And Reach Their Full Potential;

3. Correcting The System Of Unequal Justice;

4. Fostering Accountable Community-Centered Policing;

5. Ensuring Broad Access To Affordable Neighborhoods That Connect To Opportunity;

6. Claiming our Democracy;

7. Strengthening Our Rural Roots;

8. Accessing Good Jobs, Wealth, And Economic Prosperity;

9. Assuring Environmental Justice for All; and

10. Closing the Racial Digital Divide.

A repeated call is made to ' [ h ] old all leaders and elected officials responsible and demand that they change current policy.'

When elected leaders change current policy and community groups and individuals work this well-thought-out plan for change, people of all sexual orientations will benefit. Yet the plans for changes spelled out in these 10 covenants reveal—by the omission of any and all concerns specific to same-gender-loving men and women—an irony. Several times, the book mentions the long history of excluding African-American concerns from the mainstream American political agenda because of racism. However, by choosing not to include lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender community concerns, is the book avoiding controversy to boost sales among homophobic people? Or is our collective Black same-gender-loving community voice still too closeted to be heard?

In 2004, George W. Bush attracted just enough conservative homophobic Black religious voters to the polls in Ohio to pass a state constitutional ban on gay marriage and to win that state's electoral college votes and, thus, the election. Republican Alan Keyes, although unsuccessful in his 2004 campaign for a Senate seat from Illinois, appealed to socially conservative Black voters by being outspoken in opposition to gay rights. Illinois State Senator Rev. James Meeks is setting the same anti-gay strategy as Keyes, while supporting Covenant Two, in a possible run for governor.

One problem is that 2000 years ago—at the time the Gospels were selected—only about 10 percent of the people could read and write in the areas where the Bible was being put together. Down through the centuries, the interpretations and understandings of the literate religious elites determined how social traditions were formed.

By the time Africans were imported into America, the religious elites of the era of slavery taught a King James version of the Bible in English that was interpreted to give moral foundation to racism, sexism and homophobia. African-American religious denominations and institutions formed under that triple yoke of church-sanctioned oppression. Quickly, scriptural supports for racism were broken down and, as time goes by, scriptural supports for sexism is exiting Black churches.

Anybody who has been through the higher education system of the 20th and 21st centuries ( any given trade school, technical institute or state college ) can reason and interpret scripture upon study of the Bible. Too few people in the Black same-gender-loving community are actively and vocally making the case for a prompt end to the scriptural basis of Black church-based homophobia. Some have even cynically rejected the endeavor of Rev. Al Sharpton and Black Men's Exchange activist Mr. Cleo Manago to challenge the Black church's homophobia without giving either man even the benefit of the doubt. The way many folks leave Bible study and interpretation to conservative religious leaders—instead of reading it and studying it for ourselves—is a throwback to a long-bygone era.

I propose another covenant to The Covenant With Black America:

11. Acknowledge, Appreciate And Affirm Same-Gender-Loving People.

The Black community can do this by encouraging open communication on all matters of human sexuality. Honesty is the number one moral value needed when discussing a crucial issue regarding marital fidelity, bisexuality and adultery: the 'down low' phenomenon. Honesty must be the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth at all times. Hold all leaders and elected officials responsible and demand that they change the trend to enact gay marriage bans. African-American political and cultural leaders ought to always attempt to expand or at least maintain existing civil rights and liberties.

This is what every individual can do now: Learn the word ARSENOKOTAI. In the New Testament's 1 Corinthians 6:9, the apostle Paul uses this Greek word specifically to describe men who commit acts of male-on-male rape as immoral acts. Learn the word MALACHOI. In the New Testament's 1 Corinthians 6:9, Paul uses this Greek word specifically to describe acts of male/male prostitution as immoral ones. Also, learn the word ABOMINATION. In numerous places the Levitical Holiness Code, of the Old Testament, says that many human activities—from eating pork and shrimp to wearing wool and cotton clothes at the same time—are abominations, acts that make a person temporarily unfit to enter a Jewish Temple.

This proposed 11th covenant separates the wheat from the chaff. It affirms same-gender love. It condemns gay rape and recognizes that sex for money is business, not love.

I urge you to please learn the accurate meanings of these three words. Communicate their meanings confidently and repeatedly to break down Black church-based homophobia.

Comments or concerns? E-mail .

This article shared 3705 times since Mon May 1, 2006
facebook twitter google +1 reddit email


Gay News

Equality Illinois responds to violence, murder of Black and Brown trans people on the south side 2023-01-25
--From a press release - Statement by Myles Brady Davis, Director of Communications at Equality Illinois, the state's civil rights organization for LGBTQ+ people, regarding the violences and murders of Black and Brown trans people on the south side of Chicago: ...

Gay News

Black LGBTQ+ film festival among Chicago NEA grant recipients 2023-01-11
- The Black Alphabet Film Festival—the world's oldest Black LGBTQ+-focused event of its kind—was part of the first round of grant recipients from the National Endowment of the Arts (NEA), receiving $20,000. In a press release, Black ...

Gay News

Bears, Blackhawks and NU all lose 2023-01-02
- The Chicago Bears entered the new year with the same old problems. Lack of offense and defense again plagued Chicago (3-13) as the team lost to the host Detroit Lions (8-8) 41-10 on Jan. 1. The ...

Gay News

Blackhawks lose; NU edges Brown; DePaul wins 2022-12-30
- On Dec. 29, the Chicago Blackhawks (8-22-4) lost at the St. Louis Blues (17-16-3) 3-1. In the first period, the Blues struck first in the game, but the Blackhawks battled back with a power play goal ...

Gay News

Bulls win again; Blackhawks lose again 2022-12-22
- In Atlanta on Dec. 21, the Chicago Bulls (13-18) edged the Hawks (16-16) by a score of 110-108. The Bulls' Ayo Dosunmu clinched the victory with a putback at the buzzer—the first game-winner of his NBA ...

Gay News

Life Is Work, Brave Space Alliance to distribute Grubhub gift cards 2022-12-21
- Life Is Work (LIW)—a Black and Brown trans-led social services and advocacy organization on Chicago's West Side—is collaborating with community partner and South Side trans- and Black-led organization Brave Space ...

Gay News

Bears, Blackhawks and Bulls all lose; college football champs 2022-12-19
- On Dec. 18 at Soldier Field, the Chicago Bears (3-11) fell to the playoff-bound Philadelphia Eagles (13-1) 25-20. It was the Bears' seventh straight loss—their worst skid since dropping eight in a row in 2002 to ...

Gay News

Washington skates by Blackhawks as Ovechkin makes history 2022-12-14
- At the United Center on Dec. 13, the Chicago Blackhawks (7-16-4) fell to the Washington Capitals (15-12-4) by a score of 7-3. Washington's Alex Ovechkin scored three times to become the third NHL player with 800 ...

Gay News

Brave Space Alliance to offer name change clinic for queer, trans people 2022-12-13
-- From a press release - CHICAGO, IL — December 13, 2022 — In its continual efforts of creating and protecting "brave spaces" for transgender and queer Black people to affirm their dignity, Brave Space Alliance (BSA) is providing a free name ...

Gay News

Bears, Bulls and Blackhawks all lose; NU wins; Illinois in bowl game 2022-12-05
- The streaks continue for the Chicago Bears (3-10). The Bears fell short against the archrival Green Bay Packers (5-8) 28-19 at Soldier Field on Dec. 4. It was Green Bay's eighth straight series win over Chicago, ...

Gay News

Blackhawks end losing streak; UChicago makes soccer history 2022-12-04
- On Dec. 3, the visiting Chicago Blackhawks (7-12-4) defeated the New York Rangers (11-10-4) 5-2, snapping an eight-game losing streak. With an assist on Taylor Raddysh's goal to put the team up 4-1 in the third period, ...

Gay News

Bulls, Blackhawks lose; Lightfoot-Fire FC link 2022-12-01
- The Chicago Bulls (9-12) fell to the Phoenix Suns (15-6) 132-113 in Arizona on Nov. 30, dropping the Bulls to 12th in the Eastern Conference. Phoenix now leads the Western Conference. Devin Booker scored 51 for ...

Gay News

Bears, Blackhawks lose big 2022-11-28
- The Chicago Bears (3-9), without starting quarterback Justin Fields, lost to the New York Jets (7-4) 31-10 on Nov. 27 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Jets quarterback Mike White threw three touchdown passes in his first ...

Gay News

Blackhawks get crushed; NU's futility streak continues 2022-11-20
- Taking on the nearly invincible Boston Bruins (16-2-0) at their home, the Chicago Blackhawks (6-8-3) were routed 6-1 on Nov. 19. Boston's win extends the Bruins' home winning streak to start the season at 11 games, ...

Gay News

Red Stars update roster; Blackhawks, Bulls lose; Hossa's thoughts 2022-11-17
- The Chicago Red Stars have updated the status of the club's roster as the team prepares for the 2023 season. With 13 players already under contract at least through next season, ...


Copyright © 2023 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.






About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam     
Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.