Professor Colleen Murphy authored a new piece on transitional justice for Sojourners Magazine. In the article, "To Tell the Truth," she writes about how communities around the world are addressing and redressing societal wrongs. An excerpt follows:
"...THE INTERSECTION OF religion and race in the United States is complicated. It pulls in opposing directions—revealing deepening divisions in the U.S. as well as countervailing calls for unity.
"In this context, efforts led by Rep. Barbara Lee are underway to establish the U.S. Commission on Truth, Racial Healing, and Transformation (TRHT, or truth commission) “to properly acknowledge, memorialize, and be a catalyst for progress toward jettisoning the belief in a hierarchy of human value, embracing our common humanity, and permanently eliminating persistent racial inequities.” In an April letter to President Joe Biden, some Christian religious leaders, including from Sojourners, requested an executive order to establish a truth commission to “examine the systems in place that lead to the disenfranchisement and marginalization of Black people and [to] shed light on the legacy of institutional racism and how it continues to impact every aspect of American life.”
"The theory and practice known as transitional justice provides invaluable resources on which the truth commission movement can draw. The starting point of transitional justice is that the repair of damaged relationships requires that wrongs be acknowledged and redressed. From the perspective of transitional justice, attempts in the U.S. to silence speech about white supremacy, critical race theory, and systemic racialized abuse are ineffective at best and counterproductive at worst. Silence will not end racism or heal the deep divisions and fractures in the United States. Burying history does not remove the impact of historical wrongs on contemporary relations."
Read the full essay at sojo.net.