The legacy of Richard Land is one of liberal drift in the Southern Baptist Convention. As head of the ERLC, Land has for years expressed unbiblical beliefs on abortion, in which he advised a couple to have one for a dubious “medical emergency,” and homosexuality, in which he stated that sodomy should not be criminalized and homosexuals should be a protected class. On these two issues, Land is contradicting Scripture, and from the platform of Christian Post, he continues to do so, almost weekly. This past week, in addition to referring to Andy Stanley as a brother, he proceeded to parrot CNN talking points that White Supremacy was behind the murder of Tyre Nichols in Memphis, Tennessee.
Contrasting Land is The Blaze’s Jason Whitlock, who triggered the ire of James White of Christ Our King Community Church in North Carolina with his response to Nichols’ murder. Richard Land and Jason Whitlock diverge on the issue of race factoring into the murder of Nichols, whereby the former echoes CRT talking points while the latter addresses the spiritual problems at the heart of America’s inner cities.
Richard Land penned his column, “Tyre Nichols’ murder by police raises same question as ‘A Time to Kill’ film” with a “heavier heart” featuring a thumbnail of Nichols holding his newborn child.
The fact that the perpetrators were police officers and that they knew their body cameras were working—and still behaved like Nazi stormtroopers, is beyond comprehension.
These police officers are representing our society, the individuals we had authorized to maintain law and order, including the individual protections we are all guaranteed under our Constitution.
Yet these men felt no hesitation in behaving like barbarians toward their fellow human being and fellow citizen.
Being representatives of the law, these police officers’ actions make us, the citizenry, culpable because we deputized them with the state’s authority which they then horribly abused by betraying society’s trust.
After describing the crime as heinous, Land proceeds to impute guilt upon the entire society for the actions of five police officers, while using Nazi imagery because the holocaust is the most evil act society is taught. His first mistake is articulating that police officers represent “our society” when they represent the state. Protect and Serve is a slogan, not a Modis Operandi. During Covid, police happily enforced tyrannical lockdowns and mandates. They did nothing during the riots, and according to the Supreme Court, are not obliged to risk their lives to protect of the innocent. One cannot sue the police for failure of protection. They do not represent the people, but the State. Failing to realize this distinction, Land proceeds to impugn America for “deputizing” these five law enforcement officers.
Perhaps the most disturbing thing about this stain on our nation’s soul is the fact that not only was the victim black, but so were his five police assailants. And this happened in Memphis, a city that has a 65% black population and a police department that is 58% black.
As our nation has struggled with police brutality in recent years as well as the violent backlash it has provoked (i.e. “pigs in a blanket, fry ‘em like bacon”), we have seen widespread attacks on police officers and often successful attempts to defund various police forces around the country.
Slavery has often been ascribed as a “stain on our nation’s soul” to which in the mindset of Critical Race Theorists was America’s original sin. Land would eventually go on to elicit racism as the cause, but first summarizes the landscape in which this horrendous act occurred in a black dominated city. He proceeds to cite police brutality as the cause of these high-profile deaths. Neither Michael Brown, Jacob Blake, Freddie Gray, nor even George Floyd died due to police brutality, but all four were resistant. In all four cases, cities were enflamed due to media narratives, not facts. The origins of Black Lives Matter was a false narrative, and such has perpetuated for several years.
In Memphis, which had experienced just such a scenario, they were short more than 500 police officers in the midst of a rapidly rising crime wave. Under the leadership of their Chief of Police, Cerelyn Davis, a very capable black woman, they lowered entrance standards in terms of educational attainment and career background to fill the vacancies. It should be noted that all five of these police perpetrators were very new to the force and four out of the five had already been suspended and/or had letters of reprimand placed in their permanent files.
Richard Land assumes Cerelyn Davis was “capable” when under her tenure the standards for hiring police officers was lowered and the five officers accused were delinquent and newer to the force. More than likely, Davis was hired because she was a black woman, and her record is abysmal. Being a police chief is as much about navigating politics as it is police work. Land likely inserted this appositive phrase because of her race.
Ms. Davis, the chief of police, who came from a similar position in Durham, North Carolina in 2021, arrived in Memphis to be greeted by a major upsurge in violent crime. While violent crime was spiking virtually all across America, it was even worse in Memphis (murders went from 237 in 2019 to 327 in 2020 and 346 in 2021). Many believed Memphis had become the most violent city per capita in the U.S.
In response, Chief Davis created a strike force, Scorpion (the Street Crimes Operation to Restore Peace In Our Neighborhoods) of 40 officers and sent them into the city’s most violent areas. Scorpion appears to have worked since violent crime rates started trending downward.
Then, 14 months later five members of Scorpion are the uniformed thugs who beat Tyre Nichols to death. Now, “Scorpion” has been permanently deactivated.
Although murders in Memphis receded from their spike, auto thefts increased dramatically under Davis’s tenure, and while there are political reasons, like soft on crime policies, that undergird this, Davis’s record as police chief is anything but capable and unblemished. The unit of which the accused partook in was her doing. This is a direct stain on her record, her mismanagement.
If we are going to live in a civilized society, we must have a professional police force that respects all our citizens’ constitutional rights while at the same time protecting the citizenry from criminal predators.
That means, among other things, that we are going to have to revalue policing as a profession and pay them accordingly. We must also require high standards of conduct and accountability. One of the chief hindrances to accountability has been police unions that protect the bad cops, and there are always “bad apples” in any organization. The police must do a better job of policing themselves and they must be accountable to civilian review as well.
Land states that society must do better but does not offer tangible solutions aside from increased accountability. Reevaluation of what? They lowered the standards, implemented an aggressive task force, and as a city implemented soft on crime policies. It is the leadership that must be held accountable, just as much as the officers.
“A Time to Kill” tells the story of a 10-year-old character, Tonya Hailey, who is black, being abducted and horribly raped and abused by two KKK members. When they are caught, her father, Carl Lee Hailey, shoots and kills both men on the way to arraignment in the courthouse.
Carl Lee Hailey goes on trial for murder, and is defended by Jake Brigance, played very convincingly by Matthew McConaughey.
Things are not looking good for Carl Lee until Jake Brigance is inspired to use an unorthodox strategy. During his summation to the jury, he asks the jurors to close their eyes as he recounts in vivid detail the horrific things that were done to Tonya, which while she survived, destroyed her reproductive organs. Then as he finished, he said, “Now imagine she’s white!” The movie registers the visual shock on the faces of the white jurors. Carl Lee is acquitted.
Land uses a movie involving a racial incident, similar to the book To Kill A Mockingbird, in which he asks the question of what if Nichols was white to suggest race played a factor in the murder.
Would a white 29-year-old Federal Express worker stopped in similar circumstances be likely to meet the same terrible fate as Tyre?
My mind wants to say, “Yes.” However, my broken heart says, “not very likely.” That means we still have much work to be done to realize Dr. King’s dream of an American society where everyone is judged by their character, not by the color of their skin.
Land does not believe that racism plays a factor in the case, and appeals the MLK, a heretic, that America has much work to do. Again, imputing the guilt of five men unto the entire society is unbiblical and Land does not substantiate why everyday Americans outside of Tennessee are responsible and must do better. He attempts to weaponize the death of Nichols as a national stain rather than an isolated crime.
As Dr. King often reminded us, “We shall overcome because the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” We must all commit ourselves to bend that arc in the right direction with ever greater speed.
And to my black fellow citizens who asked plaintively on Twitter, “Do white people care about what happens to our children?” my answer is “yes, multitudes of us care, and we care with every fiber of our being!”
There is nothing biblical about the MLK quote. The arc of humanity is bent towards Romans 1, not justice. Land should read his bible instead of quoting MLK to desperately appeal to the black community. White people had nothing to do with this homicide. This is not a black vs white issue, but a black vs black issue.
Whitlock’s Biblical Response
Contrary to Land, Jason Whitlock addressed Nichol’s death in his two columns. In the first, “Whitlock: Attitude explains Tyre Nichols’ tragedy, not racism,” Whitlock describes the culture surrounding black America where the expected characters of Crump and Sharpton have traveled to Memphis to profit off the death while he also articulated that the system was hardly white in Memphis. Then he proceeds to describe the attitude problem leads to the escalation of conflict seen in these cases.
In his second piece, “Whitlock: Yes, baby-mama culture explains the Tyre Nichols tragedy” he goes deeper into the cultural problems surrounding black America.
In fact, had I dishonestly blamed systemic, institutionalized racism for Nichols’ death, I would be the toast of Twitter, drowning in retweets, likes, and applause. I would be high as a kite on dopamine and swimming in interview requests.
Big Eva, including Richard Land, desire to look good to a world that hates Christ.
After detailing his thoughts that the actions of the cops mimicked “gang behavior” and describing the plight of matriarchal inner cities, Whitlock describes the three conclusions he has drawn from Nichols’ death and subsequent media reaction, with the third reason being the one which drew controversy.
Finally, my third comment, the one my critics have seized upon, is an attempt to spark a conversation about the real ramifications of America’s growing preference for female authority and alternative family structures. The matriarchy doesn’t work.
We need to talk about that.
Black urban areas are dominated by matriarchal rulership. It’s an utter failure and disaster. These areas all operate similar to Memphis. Crime is astronomical. Young men settle their differences with deadly violence. Academic performance hovers at record lows. Illegitimacy rates skyrocket.
The breakdown of the nuclear family has had disastrous effects on society, yet it is the one issue that is ignored within the black community, which would rather blame “white supremacy” and “systems” than personal actions and subcultural attitudes. The breakdown of family spillsover into crime, educational failures, and a cycle of impoverished births. 70% of arrests involving car thefts in Memphis were juveniles. These are problems in the home growing up, and this trend is not unique to Memphis.
Tyre Nichols was 29. The five police officers who participated in beating him to death range in age from 24 to 32. The behavior we witnessed from the officers resembles what happens when a group of Vice Lords catch a Gangster Disciple on their turf. The Disciple will flee. The Vice Lords will chase. Violence ensues.
My point is what we saw Friday night does not appear to be an outgrowth of bad policing. I’ve yet to see video evidence that depicts what caused the traffic stop and why Nichols had to be snatched from his car. It doesn’t feel like we’ve been shown the complete story. Something about the encounter feels far more personal than anything born of the frustration created by a resistant suspect. The use of pepper spray makes zero sense.
It feels like the outgrowth of a rotten culture, a culture where black men are canonized and celebrated for handling petty beefs and disrespect with lethal violence. That type of emotional violence is commonplace within zip codes dominated by the matriarchy.
Whitlock implicates that even the original stop was perhaps illegitimate. For years, he has articulated the dangers rap culture has had on American culture in which it glorifies violence and promiscuity. Whitlock has espoused the harm the matriarchal culture has had on the masculinity of black men. These are common themes on his show Fearless.
That’s not what God intended. He is our Savior. He authorized man to exercise dominion over the earth. He prescribed family (man, woman, and child) as the foundation of order, obedience, and His will. No racial group in America is more out of line with God’s natural order than black people. Seventy percent of our kids are born to unwed mothers. We don’t view family as a necessity for success. It’s just one of many options. It’s prioritized well below allegiance to racial idolatry, the Democrat political party, and hip-hop culture.
Because black culture has largely rejected God’s design for family, in which there is male headship over the household, the worst results have followed. Family is deprioritized, seen as optional, not ideal. Unlike Land, Whitlock understands that the rejection of God’s design is responsible for the continued recurrence of these situations.
It’s going to take male leadership in the home, in the church, and in law enforcement to fix the rotting culture that took Tyre Nichols’ life. That same leadership is required throughout American society. Baby-mama, matriarchal culture is being pushed within all facets of American society. Illegitimacy rates are rising among all racial demographics.
Christian male leadership has been demonized to placate the feelings and promote the values of the BLM-LGBTQ Alphabet Mafia. Your children’s neighborhoods will have more in common with Memphis than Mayberry.
Feminism emasculates men and androgenizes women, selling women the lies of promiscuity while erasing femininity. The breakdown of the family has impacted black communities more than all others and is self-perpetuating. It produces weak leadership like that in Memphis by Cerelyn Davis. Female leadership is a judgment in the bible, with Deborah’s elevation being a rebuke to the impotence of Barak.
God designed the family. Returning to His design would do more to fix America than any policy outcome, discussion on race, or whatever else the ivory tower types like Richard Land can conjure up. Rejecting family and marriage deteriorates a society. Memphis could just as easily be Detroit, Baltimore, Atlanta, or East St. Louis. There are cultural breakdowns which undergird the attitudes of black people towards police, but these were preceded by the breakdown of the home. The death of Nichols is not the fault of the at large society nor is it an interracial issue. To suggest such is baseless and unbiblical.