I want to thank commenter Brad for bringing to my attention an error I made in yesterday’s post White Supremacy, U.S. Citizenship, and the Body of Christ. As he so helpfully reminded me, Patrice Lumumba was assassinated three days before JFK was inaugurated so it would therefore have been impossible for him to have ordered Lumumba’s assassination. It was Eisenhower and not Kennedy who ordered the unsuccessful assassination attempt on Lumumba. Eisenhower was also still president when the CIA participated in a second attempt on Lumumba’s life which was successful.
I tried to re-trace my steps to find out exactly how I got this misguided notion in my head in the first place, but the best explanation I can muster is that I somehow got my dates confused. I sincerely apologize for misleading anyone who read yesterday’s post.
While obviously I would have worded some of my post differently had I known better, I still think there is something quite chilling about the relative apathy, indifference, or even approval shown by most white Catholics in the US to Lumumba’s assassination that suggests a failure of the baptismal imagination. Further, even though it is quite understandable why JFK’s presidency and assassination had a deeper impact on Catholics living in the US than did Lumumba’s, we should still be troubled that white Catholics in the US in generally did not recognize Lumumba or the people of the Congo as their own.
Again, I sincerely apologize and regret my error. Mistakes like this are a good reminder of the importance of community and humility to moral inquiry.