"Hi, I'm Carol, and I'm a racist." Yes, this quote is exactly what it sounds like—an introduction at a meeting called "Racists Anonymous." Carol—what's going on?
What's going on with Carol, evidently, is that she wants to talk racism. Specifically, her own. At Racists Anonymous, a new program at the Trinity United Church of Christ in Concord, NC, about a dozen people have been meeting weekly to discuss their prejudice, with the ultimate goal of eliminating systemic racism in the United States.
NBC North Carolina reports that most of the Racists Anonymous meeting attendees are members of the church. Rev. Nathan King said he warmed to the idea after witnessing escalating racial tensions sweep across America.
"It seemed like every week we were coming into worship and we were doing another prayer because someone had been killed in the street," King told NBC.
The original Racists Anonymous meetings, King told me in an interview, were held at the Congregational Church of Sunnyvale, California. After holding meetings for 90 days, they reached out to twenty partner churches to see if they wanted to take up the cause. King's church was one of them, and he accepted eagerly.
Some have misinterpreted the Trinity United Church of Christ's intentions with the Racists Anonymous group. To clarify, the church posted their 12 steps of recovery on their Facebook page.
King told Fox North Carolina that the church's progressive nature led it to seek out the opportunity.
"Oh, I don't think there's any question that Christ would say that God loves us all and that we need to learn how to love each other," he told Fox. "We ordained the first woman clergy in the United States, we ordained the first out gay man in the United States."
Michael Rosen is a reporter for Fusion based out of Oakland.