America’s ‘angriest’ theologian faces lynching tree
A crowd gathers in Marion, Indiana, in 1930 to witness a lynching. This photograph inspired the poem and song “Strange Fruit.”
April 21st, 2012
10:00 PM ET

America’s ‘angriest’ theologian faces lynching tree

By John Blake, CNN

(CNN) - When he was boy growing up in rural Arkansas, James Cone would often stand at his window at night, looking for a sign that his father was still alive.

Cone had reason to worry. He lived in a small, segregated town in the age of Jim Crow. And his father, Charlie Cone, was a marked man.

Charlie Cone wouldn’t answer to any white man who called him “boy.” He only worked for himself, he told his sons, because a black man couldn’t work for a white man and keep his manhood at the same time.

Once, when he was warned that a lynch mob was coming to run him out of his home, he grabbed a shotgun and waited, saying, “Let them come, because some of them will die with me.”

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

James Cone knew the risks his father took. So when his father didn’t come home at his usual time in the evenings, he’d stand sentry, looking for the lights from his father’s pickup truck.

“I had heard too much about white people killing black people,” Cone recalled. “When my father would finally make it home safely, I would run and jump into his arms, happy as I could be.”

Cone takes on a theological giant

Cone left his hometown of Bearden, Arkansas, and became one of the world’s most influential theologians. But the memories of his father and lynch mobs never left him. Those memories shaped his controversial theology, and they saturate his recent memoir, “The Cross and the Lynching Tree.”

Cone, who once called himself “the angriest theologian in America,” is still angry. His book is not just a memoir of growing up in the Jim Crow era; it’s a blistering takedown of white churches, and one of America’s greatest theologians, Reinhold Niebuhr - a colossal figure often cited by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

Today, Niebuhr’s importance is acknowledged by both liberal and conservative Christian leaders. President Obama once called him one of his favorite philosophers. Niebuhr, the author of classics such as “The Irony of American History,” died in 1971 after a lifetime of political activism.

Cone, however, said neither Niebuhr nor any other famous white pastor at the time spoke out against the most brutal manifestation of white racism in the 20th century America: lynching.

Between 1880 and 1940, Cone says, an estimated 5,000 black men and women were lynched. Their murders were often treated as festive affairs. Women and children cut off the ears of lynching victims as souvenirs. People mailed postcards of lynchings. One postcard of a charred lynching victim read, “This is the barbeque we had last night.”

But Niebuhr said nothing about lynching, little about segregation, and once turned down King’s request to sign a petition calling on the president to protect black children integrating Southern schools, Cone said.

Niebuhr’s decision not to speak out against lynching encouraged other white theologians and ministers to follow suit, Cone said, because Niebuhr was considered the nation’s greatest theologian.

“White theologians didn’t say anything about lynching,” Cone said from his office at Union Theological Seminary in New York, where he teaches a course on Niebuhr. “I tried to find a white theologian who addressed it in a sustained way. No one did it.”

Cone’s criticism of Niebuhr baffles at least one well-known Niebuhr scholar. Charles Lemert, author of “Why Niebuhr Matters,” said King often cited Niebuhr as an inspiration. He said he’d never heard that Niebuhr rejected a petition request from King. “It would be so remote from everything the man was.”

Lemert said Niebuhr had established a long record of speaking out against racism, beginning when he became a pastor in Detroit. Niebuhr may not have spoken out against lynching and other forms of racism later on because of another reason, Lemert said.

“He had a debilitating stroke in 1951,” Lemert said. “By the time the civil rights movement was full blown, he was retired and getting ill.”

Why Cone is angry

Cone has spent much of his career condemning the white church for saying little about slavery or racial justice. Yet his pugnacious reputation doesn’t jibe with his appearance. He is a slight man with a boyish face, cinnamon complexion and dimples. He has a high-pitched voice that drips with the Southern inflections of his native Arkansas.

Cone first gained attention in 1969 with the release of “Black Theology and Black Power,” a book he wrote after urban race riots and King’s assassination.

That book took theology out of academia and placed it on the still-smoldering streets. He became known as the father of “black liberation theology.” He said God was black (he meant it figuratively) because God was closest to those who were oppressed and despised - black people in America.

Cone said his passion for justice comes from growing up in the black church.

Cone blended the racial pride of the black power movement with an emphasis on social justice that had been a part of the black church since enslaved Africans first read the Bible. Jesus' primary message, he said, wasn't about getting people to heaven, but liberating people here and now from oppression - racial, economic and spiritual.

Cone said he was tired of white theologians writing about an otherworldly theology while cities burned and blacks were murdered by racists.

“I felt like I was the angriest black theologian in America,” he once wrote in his book “Risks of Faith.” “I had to speak out.”

Cone inspired some and angered others.

Critics say he developed a divisive, racist theology that describes God as black and whites as evil. They say he’s stuck in the '60s and never abandoned the bitterness of growing up in segregation.

Supporters say Cone exposed the hypocrisy of white churches and gave voice to helpless, poor and oppressed Christians in places as far away as China and Latin America.

The Rev. James Ellis III, an author who has been both critical and supportive of Cone, says before Cone, theology was interpreted through a white male perspective.

Cone has inspired not only blacks but also women and other racial minorities to enter seminaries and the pulpit, he says.

“Whether you agree with Cone or not, he’s definitely someone you need to deal with,” said Ellis, author of “OnThaGrindCuzin: The School Daze of Being ‘Incognegro’ in 1619.”

“He takes the gloves off and gets down to the nitty-gritty.”

Jonathan Walton, an assistant professor of African American Religious Studies at Harvard University, said listening to Cone is like “listening to a Hebrew prophet.”

For many people, Walton says, Cone “exposed that the God that they were worshiping was more consistent with the Pharaoh in Egypt than the Hebrew children.”

Cone said people still misunderstand his theology. He said he does not believe that whites are more sinful than others.

“God made us all as brothers and sisters,” he said. “I’m mad when people don’t treat others as brothers and sisters. I’m concerned about the suffering of all people, not just black people. If anybody is being treated unjustly, I’m with them.”

Singing about the ‘Hoochie Coochie Man’

Cone said his passion for justice comes from growing up in the black church. In his recent memoir, he describes how blacks relied on music and faith to deal with the cruelty of segregation.

On Saturday nights, he said, blacks in his hometown would go to juke joints with names like Sam’s Place to hear blues songs like “Hoochie Coochie Man.” On Sunday mornings, some of the same people would go to church to sing spirituals like “Lord, I Want to be a Christian in My Heart.”

Church comforted Cone, but it also made him ask questions.

“My thing was, if the white churches are Christian, how come they segregate us? And if God is God, why is He letting us suffer?”

The cross, he said, helped him find some answers. He said many white Christians “spiritualize” the cross, seeing it as a penalty Jesus had to pay for mankind’s sins.

But black Christians, starting with the slaves who took up the Bible, also viewed the cross as a way to cope with suffering.

Blacks looking at the images of lynching victims took heart from Jesus’ suffering on the cross and his resurrection, Cone said.

He writes:

“Black Christians believed that just knowing that Jesus went through an experience of suffering in a manner similar to theirs gave them faith that God was with them, even in suffering on lynching trees just as God was present with Jesus in suffering on the cross.”

Cone also talked about his personal suffering in his memoir.

He writes about his wife, Sandra, who died of cancer in 1983. He saw her on the night she died. He said they were joking and laughing as she chided him for not leaving her hospital room to get rest.

He finally did leave, but she died at 3 that morning. Thinking about the cross helped him grieve, he said.

“God talked me through that,” he said, his voice softening. “You look suffering right in you eye and say, ‘You may get me, but you’re not going to have the last word.’ ”

Cone also talks about his parents, Charlie and Lucy, who inspired him and his two brothers. Charlie was a woodcutter who encouraged his wife to return to school, where she eventually earned a college degree.

“I didn’t grow up with a lot of fear,” he said. “I just thought my mother and father would protect me.”

One of Cone’s fears today, though, is that the contemporary black church is losing its distinctive theology. He said there’s less talk about justice and more talk about prosperity.

“You go to almost any black church today, and you don’t hear spirituals anymore,” he said. “What you hear is this happy, ‘I’m prosperous’ kind of stuff. I’m not for that. You don’t come to church to be entertained. You come to wrestle with your spirit.”

Cone may still be angry, but he’s also mellowed. He’s tempered some of the voltage from the language he used in his earlier books. And he’s accepted criticism from some black women theologians who said he didn’t include the perspective of black women in his works.

Yet thoughts of his childhood and his parents never seem far off. In his books and lectures, he returns once again to them, especially when people compliment him for his boldness. In one essay, Cone wrote:

“At most, what I say and do are just dim reflections of what my parents taught and lived.”

- CNN Writer

Filed under: Bible • Black issues • Books • Christianity • Church • Crime • Culture wars • Persecution • Prejudice • Race

soundoff (2,563 Responses)
  1. Whatever

    Can anyone tell me the name of the white man who was lynched about 2 weeks and less than 100 miles away from James Byrde Jrs lynching in 'retaliation'? Byrde's lynching made world news (as it should) but this 100% innocent white man who was murdered in similar fashion by a black group was swept under the rug rather quickly (I hoped it was to diffuse a powder keg, NOT b/c his life was deemed of lesser value, his ghastly death less horrific) ) I used to know his name, but can't recall, and Byrde's wiki site has much about the aftermath -the rallies, inspired Fed hate Crime Law -but no mention of the white lynching it provoked.

    April 22, 2012 at 6:43 am |
    • VVVVV

      I notice what is taught that happened in the past and what is present now is totally different. I don't think we have gotten the full story of what everyone went through in the past. I believe it was more just 2 groups that disliked each other and violence was committed between the two groups. The media is one sided on current stories so I expect our history hasn't been truthfully taught to us either in much the same manner.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:56 am |
  2. cj

    Cone is an anti-semetic racist...Is CNN serious with this crap...A well to do black racist...complaining about alleged crimes that he alleges occurred before his birth...OJ Simpson was innocent then so are the people in the photos..Those white people are dead..I am not giving any of my labor to any disgusting black person

    April 22, 2012 at 6:41 am |
    • Earth to cj

      Well, cj, judging by that rant, you're the racist.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:57 am |
  3. alyarby

    Here is the most trusted name in news, once again fanning the fires of racial hatred. How typical of this stupid web site. I'm outta' here. Maybe there will be REAL NEWS to read on Monday, but right now, I'm going somewhere else. USA Today is better than this horrible web site.

    April 22, 2012 at 6:40 am |
    • Sal Papageorgio

      Try Fox news or even MSN... CNN is a joke. trying to start a race war is all it is bent on

      April 22, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
  4. VVVVV

    Did CNN hire too many blacks? I know Atlanta has a lot of them. They run more witey be prejudice stories than a black newspaper! Considering the BS that got touted on Zimmerman, I'm starting to wonder if those old time black discrimination stories left out a lot of truth in them. Notice how today it's the black commits a crime and then complains because he gets treated bad after the fact, and in the past they were doing nothing wrong. Are we going to be seeing the Zimmerman story this way in 50 years or so, where Trayvon was doing nothing wrong and Zimmerman came up in a KKK costume and shot Trayvon?

    April 22, 2012 at 6:40 am |
  5. David Crosby

    Why would any black people turn to the religion of their oppressors...The bible is a blueprint for slavery and genocide..And any God behind it , isn't worth following....

    April 22, 2012 at 6:39 am |
    • T Stevenson

      Jesus loves everyone. Period. He died for the sins of the World. All He asked is that you believe and follow Him. That's not racist, violent or criminal....just the truth.

      April 22, 2012 at 9:30 am |
  6. infonomics

    What a coincidence that I am currently reading "The Lynchings in Duluth", Duluth Minnesota, that is. Now, here, I learn of a lynching in Marion, Indiana. As I recall from school, my teachers seemed to emphasize the racism in the South to the near exclusion of the same in the North. Interesting, very interesting.

    April 22, 2012 at 6:37 am |
  7. adam

    this is a sad sad story of a little boy waiting for his father to come home and how people were treated by some for the color of their skin. by the comments here, i can tell that we still have people living in the woods in USA and have access to computers and internet which truly indicates how great we are as a country but not sure about nation by seeing these idiotic comments.
    be sensitive people.

    April 22, 2012 at 6:26 am |
    • Surthurfurd

      I think we are reading some of the cries of those who are upset that the hatred they have adopted is fading away.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:28 am |
    • Eric

      That would be the anger adopted by blacks. Got it.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:38 am |
  8. Claudine

    To open up CNN, and find pictures of a lynching rope and then two men hanging, bloodied with a crowd of onlookers from the 1930s, under the heading BELIEF, is beyond shocking. Who, in their right minds, would do such a thing? The cross is about forgiveness. We bring our sins to the foot of the cross and leave them there. We get up and we follow in the footsteps of Jesus, as our Lord and Savior, we are filled with the love and compassion of God. There are many who have left all they had to go to Africa to live and work and preach and teach the Good News of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. They have not waited for someone to give them millions. They are no longer slaves to sin, but free in Jesus Christ. They are new creatures in Christ Jesus, spiritually awake, no longer spiritually blind and deaf, and full of hate and bitterness, loathing, warmongering. How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of them, who bring Good News....announcing peace....proclaiming news of happiness, Our God Reigns....Does He reign in your heart this Sunday Morning? Can you forgive? Can you lay down that burden of fear and hate and bitterness and blaming, and take up your cross, denying yourself those things and thinking on the things of God? Can you rise up above the cares of this life, does the Paraclete walk along side of you? Do you have the mind of Christ? Does the Fruit of the Spirit have a place in your life. Are you walking and talking with God along the way? Jesus wept over Jerusalem, saying, "How many times I would have drawn you to me, but you would not come." The arms of Jesus are wide open for we, his children to run to and receive His Love, and yet, some hold back saying, "I must hold onto this baggage. I can not drop it and throw myself totally and wholly upon you." He still loves you, but how He longs for all of you. I will have to forgive the ones who put these ugly pictures of hate and men's littleness upon us, this morning. I am sure it is like Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." I bring it to you, Lord and I lay it at Your feet and I "sit" with you in Heavenly Places this morning for above principalities, and rulers of the darkness of this world system. This is where I sit, walk and stand, in You. Jesus is Preeminent. Turn your eyes upon Jesus, this morning, look full in His wonderful face, and the things of this earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of His Glory and Grace. You are a child of the Most High God. Our God Reigns.

    April 22, 2012 at 6:25 am |
    • Variaballistic

      Your religion did this. Your religion should pay.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:30 am |
    • Eric

      What complete, total and utter shiite. But you've gotta move that Alinsky agenda. We understand.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:34 am |
    • Claudine

      I do not have a religion. I have a relationship with Jesus Christ.

      I have no idea what an Alinski agenda is.

      I have no idea what you are talking about and you have no idea what I am talking about. We will just leave it at that.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:38 am |
    • Eric

      My apologies, Claudine. My comment was intended for Variaballistic.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:40 am |
    • Claudine

      Accepted. I am sorry. I know some will see this this morning and be so hurt and upset. They will understand what I have written and it was for them. Thank you.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:44 am |
    • Variaballistic

      Care to explain, eric? Or is ad hominem more your speed as it appears to be?
      Like Claudia I have no idea what the hell you are talking about. Do you even know what you are talking about? I wonder...

      April 22, 2012 at 6:51 am |
    • Eric

      @ V

      I'm sure you can find a copy of "12 Rules for Radicals for Dummies" online. You just haven't looked hard enough.

      April 22, 2012 at 7:00 am |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      No-one is a child of anyone but their parents. No god/jesus can be proven with evidence of any form to exist.
      Your buybull promotes slavery, so please don't lie and say this isn't supported by your belief system.

      April 22, 2012 at 7:07 am |
    • For Tea-Ba99er Eric

      From Wiki:

      "Adam Brandon, a spokesman for the conservative non-profit organization FreedomWorks, which is one of several groups involved in organizing Tea Party protests, says the group gives Alinsky's Rules for Radicals to its top leadership members. A shortened guide called Rules for Patriots is distributed to its entire network. In a January 2012 story that appeared in The Wall Street Journal, citing the organization's tactic of sending activists to town-hall meetings, Brandon explained, "his tactics when it comes to grass-roots organizing are incredibly effective." Former Republican House Majority Leader Dick Armey also gives copies of Alinsky's book Rules for Radicals to Tea Party leaders."

      You were saying...

      April 22, 2012 at 7:08 am |
    • Eric

      Fire with fire. Double-edged sword. Good for the goose.

      Need any more plati tudes?

      April 22, 2012 at 7:18 am |
    • Variaballlistic


      Your religion did this, your religion should pay.

      April 22, 2012 at 9:13 am |
  9. Dave

    I have to go to work. The oppressed among you can plan out the riots without me.

    April 22, 2012 at 6:23 am |
    • Surthurfurd

      You are right that far more people have moved beyond the level of racism that existed in the past; but, how does that justify your limitations?

      April 22, 2012 at 6:25 am |
    • Name*s kel

      Yea have fun at the meth lab, im retied from govt. Or do you work at the redneck trailor park,working for your biker buddies?

      April 22, 2012 at 6:27 am |
    • Eric

      "im retied from govt"

      I never could have guessed.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:31 am |
    • Brad76

      So Kel, what's it like to be a racist jerk?

      April 22, 2012 at 6:33 am |
  10. Jerry Freedman

    Where were the churches while the Americans exploited the Indians? Where were the churches during the Holocaust? I won't deny that there were individuals who stood up for justice but, in general, the religious hierarchies were at least complicit if not central in all the great injustices from the Crusades, to the inquisition, to the massacres of the albigensians and the huguenots. This guy is not just a theologian, he is an honest historian

    April 22, 2012 at 6:22 am |
    • Surthurfurd

      Sadly religions do more to support the common power structures and traditions than they function to promote actual morality.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:24 am |
  11. &^%$#@!

    "Can’t we give Chris [Brown] a break?…. O.J. Simpson, amazing. Is he not? What he did, when he did, what he did. Was he not amazing though"

    kayne west


    April 22, 2012 at 6:20 am |
  12. Patricia

    Christians should have confronted this violence, by Christians, when it was going in. That the churches were silent at the wholesale breaking of the word given by the founder of this faith has been beyond shameful. Just look at the faces in the crowd in this picture. They are faces of extremely primitive human beings. It's about time that lynchings and beatings and other terror that occurred is discussed openly. If people are right that it is in the past, we ought to be able to talk intelligently about it and the impact it has had on the American people and our country's history.

    April 22, 2012 at 6:15 am |
    • Dave

      Three generations ago. 75 years have passed. But you're the kind that continues to look around and see only "extremely primitive human beings" out there irrespective of the progress that's been made.

      Stow it, lady.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:19 am |
    • Surthurfurd

      Those who refuse to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:22 am |
    • Patricia

      Dave: I guess my use of the term "intelligently" is what got to you. Apparently, you are "the kind" who are incapable of intelligent discussion, or have a need to hide something. If there has been so much "progress," we can study this as history without any fear, and learn talk about why the primitives in this picture acted like they did. Take a look at the "pretty" girls in the bottom left of the picture, and the "handsome" guy smiling. These are subhumans enjoying being evil. Churches SHOULD have taught them not to murder, at least, and did nothing.
      You stow it, kid.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:35 am |
    • Variaballistic

      Those who refuse to put the blame exactly on where it belongs are part of the problem. People did these things. Certain people.

      And their religion helped in a big way as each individual interpreted it and justified it as being okay by their religion.

      And others deliberately foster this sort of ignorant motivational outlook even today. Racism does not survive an honest education and an ability to think clearly. We could eliminate racism if we stop the stuff that gives it power.

      Brainwashed and ignorant people will fight us every step of the way, too. Maybe they identify too closely with being brainwashed and ignorant and are scared of what they don't understand. Whatever. Let's just put a stop to it, okay?

      April 22, 2012 at 6:41 am |
    • Eric

      @ Variaballistic

      My doctor is black, as is my state representative, my neighbor, and my real-estate agent. My son's teacher is black, as is the principal of his school and a member of the school board. I see black policemen, firemen, soldiers and generals who are entrusted with the safety and security of my family. My president is, well, mostly black. Maybe not black enough for your standards, but whatever.

      You are off on a march against religion, using whatever fodder you can justify, however loosely. You're pathetic.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:53 am |
    • Variaballlistic

      You think that just because you live in a predominantly black area that there is no racism to be found anywhere?

      Total opposite in my town.

      Your god is a racist god that says racist things, kills using racist violence, and your Jesus was a racist fundie of that racist religion he came from.
      In real life, he'd hang with other Jews, not you...except he's dead. A dead racist and good riddance to him.

      April 22, 2012 at 9:33 am |
  13. white woman in S. G

    No need for going to church today. I just read the best sermon i could have hoped for. Thanks be to God.

    April 22, 2012 at 6:14 am |
  14. Brad76

    And of course CNN had to dig up an picture from the 1930's of two poor black people hanging from tree's. That is just terrible. I see right through you CNN, people are starting to catch on to what you're doing. You're not going to get your precious race war, and I'll personally make sure of it.

    April 22, 2012 at 6:09 am |
    • Dave

      CNN will likely get their race war if this happens to Zimmerman.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:14 am |
    • Surthurfurd

      How dare people bring up factual history when you are trying your best to ignore it!

      April 22, 2012 at 6:21 am |
    • Brad76

      Well Dave, Zimmerman isn't even white, I can tell by looking right at him. Anyone who tried to start racial tension with white people over this is dumb as a bag of rocks and deserves to rot in prison for a very long time. I would even suggest that CNN be investigated by the FBI for numerous issues, including this one.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:23 am |
    • Dave

      That would include MSM, the entertainment industry, black 'civil rights' leaders,' Black Panthers, government leaders at various levels, including congressmen wearing sympathy hoodies, etc...

      Zimmerman is white enough for their agenda. Gotta go now, sorry.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:26 am |
    • Brad76

      Surthurfurd – Putting words in my mouth are you? What do people in the year 2012 have to do with horrible things which occurred in the 1930's? Ignore it? Is that your new strategy? Stirring up racial tension this way is not helping the issue, it's intentionally trying to stir up violence and anger. Good lord help us all, people are just so stupid.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:26 am |
    • Variaballistic

      You want to cover it all up. You want people to ignore crimes because it might make them angry? Are you really that slimy?

      April 22, 2012 at 6:44 am |
    • Brad76

      Variaballistic- Oh I;m slimy now? I'm not even American, I don't have an interest in covering things up. This has bene talked about for many many years, it's in the history books, we know what happened. Now that it's 2012, it doesn't make any sense to hate white people who have had nothing to do with what a bunch of racist southerners did in the 1800's.

      What I do care about is blatant racism, and these days it's being committed by American black people. They use images of oppression from history to justify their hatred of today's white people, and encourage other blacks to follow them. Today's black racists are filled with just as much hatred and intolerance as southern American whites were way back then.

      April 22, 2012 at 7:01 am |
    • Variaballlistic

      I agree that racists are in most ethnic groups. How are you going to "personally" make sure a race war doesn't happen?

      April 22, 2012 at 9:35 am |
  15. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things

    April 22, 2012 at 6:00 am |
  16. Abe Lincoln

    They knew how to have cheap entertainment back in the depression days. You had to. Looks like a festive night for all. Well....almost all.

    April 22, 2012 at 6:00 am |
  17. Dave

    CNN's just following their libby marching orders.


    April 22, 2012 at 5:59 am |
    • Name*s kel

      Telling to truth to evil blind right wing liers like you? Good for CNN!

      April 22, 2012 at 6:07 am |
    • Dave

      Hey, kel. The truth isn't the problem. I love the truth. Beat Wh tey Night was completely true, wasn"t it? Just like the mindless racist flash mobs occurring throughout the country. Totally true. All of it. I'm just waiting for the CNN story about that.

      Tick, tick, tick...

      April 22, 2012 at 6:10 am |
  18. xponential

    Stir it up.....Stir it up

    April 22, 2012 at 5:54 am |
  19. SAVIOR

    My great grandfather fought for the south in the civil war.it was a choice he made without asking me first..I can't control the actions of others nor will I apologize for the actions of others

    April 22, 2012 at 5:52 am |
    • SAVIOR

      I won't be insulted ..I won't be wronged and i wont be laid a hand upon. I don't do these to others and I wont have em done to me

      April 22, 2012 at 6:00 am |
    • SeeNN1

      Truth be told, you're proud of your old great-grandpappy, aren't you?

      April 22, 2012 at 6:44 am |
  20. Abe Lincoln

    If they were to bring this back, black on white crime would go down. I might even be able to take a walk downtown at night without my concealed weapon again.

    April 22, 2012 at 5:51 am |
    • Name*s kel

      You fool I pray, not hope, but pray your weapon goes off and hits you in a artery and you bleed out!

      April 22, 2012 at 5:56 am |
    • Abe Lincoln

      @Kel. Not likely. I'm proficient with my weapons. Boy.

      April 22, 2012 at 5:57 am |
    • Name*s kel

      Well Crack, like I said accidents DO happen And I wish all bad things to happen to PWT (poor white trash) for you ignorant cracks to you and your family. BTW retired MPD firearms instructor boy.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:03 am |
    • Dave

      Way to be professional and take the high road there, kel. We expect nothing less from people like you.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:07 am |
    • Name*s kel

      Thank you dave, now stay the hell out! When it comes to this subject , theres no limits!

      April 22, 2012 at 6:10 am |
    • Abe Lincoln

      Well I've made it 42 years of using firearms without an accidental or negligent discharge and I don't take it for granted. So your prayers for the opposite result are doubtful to have any effect on me.

      Your kind on the other hand: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MeGD7r6s-zU

      April 22, 2012 at 6:10 am |
    • Brad76

      Kel is racist filth, ignore him.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:11 am |
    • Dave

      I bet kel holds his pistol sideways. That's the correct way, you know. Gangsta-style. So intimidatin'

      April 22, 2012 at 6:12 am |
    • Variaballistic

      Don't feed the stormfront troll.

      April 22, 2012 at 6:53 am |
    • T Stevenson

      Abe, if you live by the gun, you'll die by the gun. If you have an itchy trigger finger and looking for an excuse...you will find it. You will either end up 6 feet under or in a jail cell to become someone's lil white biach. Next time you go buy ammo, you better get some vasoline......boy.

      April 22, 2012 at 9:37 am |
    • T Stevenson


      April 22, 2012 at 9:38 am |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.