Thursday, July 10, 2008

social justice for dummies

Sorry I'm a bit late with my post...just pretend its still Wednesday :)

We're probably all familiar with the series of books "------ for dummies". You can get a book for dummies for just about any subject. I've been talking with a colleague over the last couple of months about social justice/fair trade issues and blogs including this one. In our discussions I was somewhat relieved to discover that I'm not the only one who sometimes feels swamped or lost in the wordy debate/dialogue. Its not that I lack intelligence or have trouble reading...its perhaps more that the 'deep debate/dialogue' doesn't connect or empower me to make change as it does some. I fully appreciate that some learn by wrestling and dissecting....neither is wrong or better. Perhaps its not a case of either/or but both/and. I would suggest that we must be careful that we don't become so attached to the idea of the conversation that it leads to no actual action or change. Equally, we must take care not to be so full of action that we have no understanding or appreciation for the needs/concerns/issues.

I have a feeling that my posts on this blog may seem a bit simple......but I hope that those who would prefer to read "social justice for dummies" may find something that they can sink their teeth into and chew over.


  1. Shar, there is space at the table for everyone (which is not to say that you're a dummmy, far from it). There is a place in the story of justice for intellectual conversation, for too long The Salvation Army has in my humble opinion "dumbed down" our faith - whether it be its intellectual face or its practical face. And, without a shred of doubt or hesitation there is a place in the story of justice for action. If we follow Jesus and how He led His disciples into the story of the Kingdom, then we can see that there is a cycle of action-reflection-renewed action. I think that is what you were getting at with both/and. Thanks for the reminder to stay thoughtfully grounded.

  2. You're right Malcolm, there is room at the table for everyone...perhaps me using the word 'dummies' wasnt the most helpful. Perhaps simple would have been a better it possible to have simple intellectual dialogue...or is that an oxymoron? I think the beauty of a shared blog is that the different voices can be heard, and that opens up a wider scope for the readers to engage and process the posts. Its the beauty of the body wrestling with the simple AND complex. After all "we're all in this together" (and off I go humming the tune for the rest of the day) blessings bro

  3. there's a place for deep debate, and personally I love it

    but in my experience the most impactful contributions are stories ... Jesus' version of that was parables

    hopefully this blog is a place where we can contribute both deep debate, and stories