Christian Without Christ: How Religious Identities Distort Morality In Ghana

religion2Jesus of Nazareth is hands down one of my favorite people ever. The basis of my initial moral compass, Jesus demanded from us that we help the “least of our brothers”.  That we help the poor, heal the sick, and sometimes defend women who have sex outside of marriage when they’re about to be killed by an angry mob. Essentially, Jesus required us to take upon his work and protect the most vulnerable as a means of reducing the suffering of one another. However, Ghana, a Christian majority country rated as the most religious in the world,  is also one of the most unequal and corrupt. How do both of these things co-exist? They co-exist through the use of religion for the domination of others. Because Ghanaian society is uncritically hyper-religious, many do not notice that a professed religious identity, as Christian or Muslim, does not necessarily translate into good moral behavior. Ironically, making morality interchangeable with having a religious identity allows the dehumanization of religious minorities and non-believers, while providing a safe haven for abusers. I seek a shift in perspective, where we as Ghanaians evaluate morality on the basis of how we treat each other, rather than whether we serve a God(ess) or which God(ess) we profess to serve.  Continue reading

How Hating Gay People Will Destroy Christianity In Ghana

emmett-till
kinto 2 Image of Emmett Till’s brutalized corpse. The colored image is that of Kinto after he was attacked by a mob of men.

On August 8, 1955 white men brutalized and killed Emmet Till for allegedly whistling at a white woman. Anxieties about interracial sex in America often caused white men to beat, torture and kill Black people.  The systematic brutalization of Black people in America was very much a part of the white supremacist Christian tradition. From state laws that banned interracial marriage  (the District Court in Loving v. Virginia upheld anti-interracial marital laws because the judge theorized that God separated the races to prevent interracial marriages) to Christian college policies that prohibited interracial sex as late as in 2000, white Christians in America often maintained that interracial sex was an abomination to God. And this sentiment created a culture where mobs of white racist men could freely brutalize, torture, and kill Black people because they were confident that their actions were sanctioned by God. Similar to hateful homophobic people in Ghana. Continue reading