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A Preacher Speaks to the Democrats about the Heart
North Carolina NAACP President and founder of the people protest 'Moral Monday', William Barber, speaks of justice and peace and mercy in a powerful way. Here is the transcript.
By William Barber
Rev. Dr. William Barber II spoke to the massive audience at the Democratic Convention on Thursday night (7/28/16). The North Carolina NAACP President and founder of North Carolina’s people protest “Moral Monday” is becoming more known not only in is own state, and country, but also around the world for his dedication to peace — and his demand for justice. The GOP turned down his request to speak there. Here is the transcript of Rev. Barber’s powerful speech:
Good evening. My brothers and sisters.
I come before you tonight as a preacher, the son of a preacher. A preacher immersed in the movement at five years old. I don't come tonight representing any organization, but I come to talk about faith and morality.
I'm a preacher and I'm a theologically conservative liberal evangelical biblicist . [Cheers] I know it may sound strange, but I'm a conservative because I worked to conserve a divine tradition that teaches us to do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with our God. [Cheers]
I've had the privilege of walking with many influential people. As we are working together in the revival and calling for a revolution of values, and as we travel the country and see things, that is why I'm so concerned about those that say so much, about what God says so little, while saying so little about what god says so much. [Cheers]
In my heart, I'm troubled. And I'm worried about the way they do cynically used by some to serve hate, fear, racism and greed. We need to keep the bar of the scriptures. We need to heed the voice of the scriptures. The prophet Isaiah cries out, what I'm interested in, the nation, pay people what they deserve. [Cheers] Share your food with the hungry. Do this and then your nation shall be called a repairer of the breach. [Cheers]
Jesus, a brown-skinned Palestinian Jew called us to preach good news to the poor, the broken, and the braised in all those who are made to feel unaccepted.
Our constitution calls us to commit our government to establish justice, to promote the general welfare, to provide for the common defense and to ensure domestic tranquility. [Cheers]
Now, to be true, we've never lived this vision perfectly. But this ought to be the goal at the heart of our democracy. And when religion is used to camouflage meanness, we know that we have a hard problem in America -- heart problem in America. [Cheers]
There have always been forces that want to harden and even stop the heart of democracy. There have also always been people who stood together to a stir what sister Dorothy gave called the revolution of the heart and what Dr. King called a radical revolution of values. [Cheers]
I say to you tonight, some issues are not left versus right, they are right versus wrong. We need to embrace our deepest moral values and push for a revival at the heart of our democracy. When we fight, to reinstate the power of the voting rights act. [Cheers] And we break the nullification of the current congress. We especially note that when we do that, we are reviving the heart of our democracy. [Cheers] When we fight for $15 minimum wage and a union, [Cheers] and universal health care and public education and immigrant rights, and lgbtqt rights, [Cheers] We are reviving the heart of our democracy. [Cheers]
When we develop tax and trade policies that no no longer funnel our prosperity to the wealthy few, we are reviving the heart of our democracy. [Cheers] When we hear the legitimate disconnect -- discontent of black lives matter and become together -- we come together to renew justice in our criminal justice system, we are embracing our deepest moral values and reviving the heart of our democracy. [Cheers]
When we love the Jewish child and the Palestinian child, [Cheers] the Muslim and the Christian and the Hindu and the Buddhist and those who have no faith but they love this nation [Cheers] We are reviving the heart of our democracy.
When we fight for peace and when we resist the proliferation of military style weapons on our street. [Cheers] And when we stand against the anti-democratic stronghold of the NRA, we are reviving the heart of our democracy. [Cheers]
In times like these, we have make some decisions and I might not know -- normally I’d be here as a preacher, an individual, but when I hear Hillary's voice and her positions, I hear and I know that she is working to embrace our deepest moral values and we should embrace her. [Cheers]
But let me be clear, let me be clear, she, nor any person can do it alone. The watchword of the democracy in the watchword of faith is we. The heart of our democracy is on the line this November and beyond. [Cheers]
My friends, they tell me that when the heart is in danger, somebody has to call an emergency code. And somebody with a good heart will bring a defibrillator to work on the bad heart. [Cheers] Because it is possible to shock about heart and revived the polls. In the season, when someone tries to harden and stop the heart of our democracy, we are being called like our poor mothers and fathers to be the moral defibrillator of our time. [Cheers]
We must shock this nation with the power of love. We must shock this nation with the power of mercy. We must shock this nation and fight for justice for all. We can't give up on the heart of our democracy, not now, not ever! [Cheers]
And so, and so I stop by here tonight to ask, is there a heart in this house? [Cheers] Is there a heart in America? [Cheers] Is there somebody that has a heart for the poor, and a for the vulnerable? [Cheers] Then stand up. Vote together. Organize together. [Cheers] Fight for the heart of this nation. [Cheers]
While we are fighting, revive us again. Find the love. Lead with love. May each soul be rekindled with fire from above. Hallelujah!
Find the glory. [Cheers]
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