Sunday, September 4, 2011

a vaccine against hatred

Read an article tonight called "Una vacuna contra el odio," meaning a vaccine against hatred.

It's a good article, one certainly worth reading, from El Tiempo, a Colombian news site. It's about discrimination and how it's more than just a racial thing. There's a law that was passed last July (or possibly that there's another one that will be passed in addition to this one--didn't quite catch that) that they're hoping will help in curbing discrimination and helping people to understand more fully what that means.

And a very interesting quote:

"Sin embargo, no hay que llamarse a engaño. La ley por sí sola no reducirá tales fenómenos, ni transformará las condiciones estructurales y culturales que los generaron. Tampoco llenará los vacíos que han dejado otras normas..."

"But don't be fooled. The law on its own won't reduce things like this, these phenomena, nor will it transform the structural and cultural conditions that they generate. Neither will it fill the gaps left by those standards..."

(Sorry for the clunky translating, my Spanish-speaking friends. I'm kinda rusty.)

And all I could think reading that was a handful of verses through Romans. How the law reveals to us our sin but it can't save us. And the article: the law on its own isn't going to fix things, isn't going to heal the deep-rooted problems or fill the empty places left by them. The hope then is that through this law (and other things) Colombians will be able to understand more fully what discrimination is.

"El aporte más valioso del proyecto legislativo es que define estos actos como lo que son..."

"The most important contribution of the new legislation is that it defines these acts as what they are."

Sounds familiar, no? Check this out: Therefore no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of our sin.

The point is that while the law does have a role, that's not where our hope is, that's not where deep transformative work comes from.

The good news is that it's available, that the law isn't the end of the story.

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