Skip to content
Public Version of REL 161 Religion in the New Media

icon picker
5 Interlocking Evils

Systemic Racism
Systematic Racism, a term that refers to “ systems in place that create and maintain racial inequality in every type of life for individuals with different colored skin.” It can also be called structural racism or also institutional racism. It affects individuals of color by making it more difficult/ challenging to take part in today’s society, economy and culture. Take George Floyd’s death as an example of this. His death lead to heavy protests that hope to end brutality in the police force and racism across the U.S.
Wealth inequality and the widespread phenomenon of people living below the poverty line, i.e. not having access to the resources they need to live and thrive in the world. This is coupled with the hoarding of wealth by those who do not need additional resources, and who continue to steal resources from people and communities who are already impoverished.
Militarism and the War Economy
Militarism can be defined as “the belief or desire of a government or people that a country should maintain a strong military capability and be prepared to use it aggressively to defend or promote national interests.”- . A war economy can be defined as “a economy of a country at war.” It can further be defined as “the organization of a country's production capacity and distribution during a time of conflict.”-
Ecological Crisis
The destruction of the natural world through ore stripping, fossil fuel production and use, widespread pollution by factories and other industries, and more. This results in natural disasters such as hurricanes and floods happening more frequently, and notably affecting BIPOC and impoverished communities more intensely. The most well understood and communicated phenomenon of ecological crisis is climate change and the increase of global temperature, which is causing water levels to rise and threatening both the living space of human beings as well as the habitats and prey resources of animals.
This is fueled by a widespread business model that has been referred to as a “religion of profit at all costs.”

The Distorted Moral Narrative of White Christian Nationalism
White Christian Nationalism seeks to bind a hyper-specific, oppressive reading of Christian texts to a highly nationalistic American culture based on White supremacy and capitalism. It portrays poorness as moral failure, whiteness as the truest virtue of all, and rich whites, especially men, as having a God-given elite status that allows them to oppress and control others with impunity. It strips biblical figures like Moses, Jesus, Mary, etc of their historical context and identity in order to dilute them and co-opt their messages for their own social and economic benefit.
“Interlocking” refers to the idea that these evils are interconnected and they feed each other. This connects to the work of scholars like Audre Lorde, who argue that there is no hierarchy of oppressions and that all oppression functions together to keep the overall web of oppressive systems going. Thus, we must attack these evils and resist them in tandem through organizing and coalition.
Want to print your doc?
This is not the way.
Try clicking the ⋯ next to your doc name or using a keyboard shortcut (
) instead.