You Can't Legislate the Spirit: Willie Bodrick on the Limits of Politics on the Issue of Race

Dec 31, 2020, 09:57 AM
“You can’t legislate the heart; you can’t legislate the spirit.” Willie Bodrick (Twelfth Baptist Church, Roxbury MA) responds to the question of the limits of politics and legislation to bring needed transformation and healing to the painful history of race in our country.

Why can’t laws change hearts? What does this mean for other contentious issues in our common life? And while we note the limitations of politics and law, how might this realm of our social life be, actually, helpful?

Today’s show is an excerpt from a What In God’s Name webinar from October 28, 2020. The full webinar is on our YouTube channel, and can be viewed here: 

Our show pushes back against the unexamined, often unconscious ways that we frame public questions using political or economic modes of thinking. We aim to be part of a growing movement of people who are critical of the narrowness of political and economic categories, and who want to revive a vision of human flourishing that is grounded in the wisdoms of theological and moral philosophical tradition. We see these habits and ways of thinking as being pre-political, and foundational to a healthy and civil shared life in families, communities, economies, and polities.

In short, we want to foster conversations, develop habits, and create communities that are grounded in curiosity, going deep, and shining light.

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