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Grand Rapids Think Tank promotes more White Supremacy

April 1, 2021

Over the past decade, GRIID has written dozens of articles that are critical of the Grand Rapids-based far right Think Tank, the Acton Institute for the Study of Religion & Liberty.

In our posts on the Acton Institute, we have dissected their ideological celebration of Capitalism, their support for religious conservatism and their history of climate denial. However, within the past year, a year that has seen the Movement for Black Lives for the people in the United States to confront the glaring realities of White Supremacy, we have noted that the Acton Institute has ramped up their own perpetuation of White Supremacy.

A year ago, when the COVID pandemic hit the US, the Acton Institute promoted xenophobia and anti-Asian hate in a post blaming China for the pandemic. After the police lynching of George Floyd, the Acton Institute began to publicly condemn the Black Lives Matter movement, further demonstrating their perpetuation of White Supremacy.

Within the past few weeks, the Acton Institute has gone the extra mile to demonstrate their support for White Supremacy. In an article they posted on March 27, they condemn Black author Ibram X. Kendi, particularly for suggesting that Jesus was a revolutionary. The Acton Institute rant against Kendi also condemns the anti-racist author for being critical of converting people from other cultures and spiritual traditions – missionary work – as well as, blaming him for succumbing to Liberation Theology. Liberation Theology is rooted in the idea that God’s people should liberate themselves for systems of power and oppression. The Acton Institute rejects such a notion, since, 1) they believe that liberation theology is rooted in Marxism, and 2) they believe that Capitalism is the perfect bedfellow of Christianity.

Ironically, just one week before attacking a Black anti-racist author, the same Acton Institute writer praised Ayn Rand for genuinely searching for God. In fact, Acton Institute founder, Rev. Robert Sirico was the one who spoke so highly of Rand. 

So, within a one week period, we see the far right Think Tank praise a white author for defending Capitalism, while condemning a Black author for suggestion that Jesus was a revolutionary. Further evidence to underscore exactly why the Acton Institute chose Grand Rapids to be its home base.

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