Fred Luter Jr. was already “the first black vice president” of the Southern Baptist Convention. Now he is going to be the “first black president” of the Southern Baptist Convention.
“The first black” precedent is usually a reliable indicator of the decline of a city, state, nation or institution.
Jean-Jacques Dessalines was the first black president of Haiti. Nelson Mandela was the first black president of South Africa. Robert Mugabe was the first black president of Zimbabwe. Coleman Young was the first black mayor of Detroit.
Obama was the first black president of America. NASA quit going to space when Charles Bolden became its first black administrator. The arrival of the first black family in your neighborhood heralds the inevitable collapse in property values.
“The first black” almost always means … the turning point when something started turning into shit.
Serious Bible scholars will tell you that God cursed Ham’s swarthy descendants to be the servant of servants. I don’t know if there is any merit to that theory, but divine wrath is the most plausible theological explanation for the existence of black people.
To be perfectly honest, I am thrilled that Fred Luter Jr. is going to be the first black president of the Southern Baptist Convention. I have never thought much of Baptists and hopefully this move will start killing them off in Dixie like the Methodists and the Episcopalians.
The South was regrettably evangelized by Northern missionaries who spread their diseased low church faith here in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The Southern Baptists only ballooned into their present size because of the credit they got for defending slavery in the nineteenth century.
Churches rise and fall. The egalitarian Baptists grew at the expense of the more hierarchical Anglicans who benefited from the collapse of the still more hierarchical Catholics. Christianity in the South will be strengthened by the decline of Baptists and Methodists.
In the short term, the evangelical sects will benefit from the collapse of the Southern Baptists, but in the long term hopefully a more enduring church – the Church of Dixie, something like the old school Anglican Church – will emerge from the wreckage.