Nigerian born British actor David Oyelowo has emphasized the need for Americans to repent of the “original sin” of white privilege that has become a part of the country.
Oyelowo made the remarks in a group video conversation hosted by Oprah Winfrey on YouTube, responding to Winfrey’s opening remarks.
The conversation comes on the heels of the death of black American George Floyd at the hands of a white Minneapolis cop, Derek Chauvin.
Floyd was laid to rest on Tuesday, June 9, 2020, but the impact of his demise and the aftermath of the continued protests continue to rock the entire globe as many across nations have relentlessly called for an end to racism.
Kicking off the conversation, Winfrey said, “Our country is at a moment of reckoning right now”, inviting the speakers to address the notion of privilege.
It’s seeming like we as black people are somehow the problem to be solved,” said Oyelowo. “What is also not being acknowledged is that baked into the inception, the foundation of America as a country is this white privilege. We were stolen from a continent and brought here and that knee on the neck started there, but also, foundationally, America was built with a knee on the neck of the Native Americans. It happened to the Mexicans as well.
There is a sin baked into this country and how it was built… I want to go to a spiritual place. One of my asks is can we reach a consensus that this country needs to repent. It needs to repent of that sin.”
Saying that he had white people calling him in tears, the actor added:
You need to gather with your fellow white people, recognise that you are beneficiaries of this sin, you need to repent of it… in order for there to be salvation beyond that.”
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