A Campaign Pitch Rekindles the Question: Just What Is Liberation Theology?

At The New York TimesReligion & Politics contributor, Mark Oppenheimer writes that four years after the sermons of Obama’s former pastor, Jeremiah A. Wright, became an issue in the 2008 presidential campaign, “conservatives are still ridiculing liberation theology.” Glenn Beck has recently said that the black liberation theology that Wright preached is a “theological tradition based in hate, intolerance and racial black nationalism.” And just last week, Texas billionaire, Joe Ricketts, was reportedly considering financing an advertising campaign to attack Obama for his relationship with Wright. Yet according to Oppenheimer, conservatives like Beck and Ricketts, along “with clueless pundits and incurious journalists,” fail to understand the basic message of liberation theology. “Contrary to the simplifications of the past four years,” writes Oppenheimer, “liberation theology, which has become hugely influential, teaches not hate, nor anti-Americanism, but a renewed focus on the poor and the suffering, as embodied by Jesus.”        

Read at The New York Times

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