Who is Melinda Adams?
Melinda Adams is a Battle Creek resident who, now retired, worked as an educator in the area. She attended Kalamazoo College. Throughout her life she has lived in many different places, including a ten-year stay in Kenya. She was married to an Asian man and has children who are biracial. She is very involved in community efforts based in conversations around race and whiteness, including a multi-racial book club.
Excerpt from interview with Melinda Adams by Whitney Dow, 2017
Adams: [00:03:23] Yes. I think that the basic tenets of the Christian faith are worthy and valuable and would be if they were put into practice, would make this world a better place, make this country a better place. But I don’t think that the interpretation of most people, most churches, most pastors is one that is that reflects fairly on what the Christian faith is supposed to be.
So, I think that the issue of white privilege and vis-a-vis the church is one that is pretty problematic. I don’t think that the churches have responded to white privilege. They haven’t. Generally speaking I think my church has, but I think it’s the only one in this town that has. I think that they ignore white privilege pretty much because they just want to keep—maintain the status quo. And they want to appeal to the—I think they do appeal to the lower element of their congregations rather than up. Or they’re not trying to bring their congregations up. They just want to make sure they walk through the door every week, and so they don’t antagonize them or bring up things that they think that would turn people away. So they’ve, more or less, avoided any discussion of white privilege.