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Tears We Cannot Stop: A Sermon to White America

(Feb. 2017) I loved spending time with Michael Eric Dyson – in my car and in my kitchen. Hearing him read his own words felt very intimate to me.

He subtitles this book a sermon but I felt it was a conversation. I was not being lectured to or preached at. He refers to the listener often as “beloved” and that moniker felt genuine to me. His purpose in reaching out to us is to draw us in to see a world we may not understand.

My first thought after finishing this book is that ignorance is a choice. People walk among us harboring prejudice and biases because they have chosen not to know the world – not because anyone is preventing them from knowing the world.

I would highly recommend this audiobook. The fact that “sermon” is in the title might put a lot of people off, but don’t be put off.

The thought of spending what precious years I have on this earth living an unexamined life is anathema to me. It also perpetuates beyond my lifetime the institutional racism and sexism that plagues our country. That is not the legacy I want to leave behind for my children and grandchildren.

Wouldn’t it be a wonderful thing to see this book chosen by bookclubs across America as a work they want to read and discuss? It’s necessary to change people’s hearts before you change their minds. Michael Eric Dyson approaches his subject that way and his words are very compelling.

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