We Are Batman!!!
Hi, Lovers – Well, if we didn’t think we were living in Dangerous Times, I guess we all get it now! Aye? The future that looked so inevitable on the morning of November 8 is gone. Simply gone. Well, I hope we all agree that it’s time to create a new one.
A friend of mine tells of how on Tuesday night, at about 1am, he became weary of the election returns and decided to watch an episode of “Gotham”, just for fun. Turns out when you’re living in a nightmare, everything is nightmarish. In this episode, The Penguin has managed to get elected as the mayor of Gotham. The nightmare continues and the struggle between “good” and “evil” ensues. Ultimately, “good” triumphs as Batman saves the day. What a relief!! But we don’t have Batman to save us. Or do we?
Seems to me that these Dangerous Times are tossing the weird costume and the cape to us. We’re Batman!!! Of course, I mean everyone who sees the dark future that is forming on the horizon, but I mean it especially for people of faith. It’s really our responsibility to uphold, work for, and make sacrifices for the justice-loving, people-loving, future-loving messages that our traditions bring us. Immigration, peace, human rights, even simple fairness are moral issues. We have to rise to the occasion if we are to survive what is to come.
Today’s episode of Love in a Dangerous Time features an amazing leader from the sixties anti-war movement and from everything that has come since. Bill Ayers is my guest and he’s got an important new book called (are you ready for this?), Demand the Impossible: A Radical Manifesto (Haymarket Books, 2016).
Let’s think about it.
What if we broke from the dogma of militarism?
What if we converted the American financial system into a public utility?
What if we stopped tinkering with the business of caging people and abandoned the prison system altogether?
What if we agree that education is not a commodity to be sold for profit?
What if we simply stop destroying our earth, and work for sustainability?
What if our imaginations were free to imagine a world where racism, xenophobia, poverty, homelessness, male supremacy, gun violence, deportations, endless wars, drones, criminal climate change, mass incarceration, and so many more humanity-limiting things were gone?
What then might our imaginations be free to create?
I’ve been talking a lot about the work of building a new Church in these podcasts. Right now – what if we all started meeting in small groups to support our own transformation into true Christians (or Jews, or Buddhists, or Muslims, or…..) and begin to reshape the world?
I think Ayers’ book, Demand the Impossible, along with Brian McLaren’s The Great Spiritual Migration (Love in a Dangerous Time, episode 72), and Rick Ufford-Chase’s Faithful Resistance (episode 76), could be the reading list that would get us going. So I urge you, Lovers, to get these books, read them and discuss them with the folks in your community.
And all along, I hope you’ll be in dialogue with the other Lovers. Please comment on the LoveInADangerousTime.net website and on our Love in a Dangerous Time Community page on Facebook. Let’s get some dialogue going on here.
It’s going to take a lot of discussion and hard work to become Batman! Really!
Don’t forget that we’ll be getting dispatches from Rev. Donna Schaper (see Love in a Dangerous Time episode, episode 78) on her participation in the World Climate Change conference in Morocco. He messages will start in the next day or so and go till the end of the conference. I’ll put out separate blog posts, so keep an eye on the LoveInADangerousTime.net website, or on your RSS feed for this podcast.
So, Lovers, let’s listen to this conversation with Bill Ayers, author of “Demand the Impossible.”
NOTE: This interview was recorded on Monday, November 7, the day before the election. What a different world it was.
Bill Ayers’ website – billayers.org/
Bill’s Facebook page – facebook.com/bill.ayers
Bill on Wikipedia – en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_Ayers