Statement at Candlelight Vigil in Smithfield. Click for news coverage.
Deuteronomy 15: For the poor shall never cease out of the land: therefore I command thee, saying, Thou shalt open thine hand wide unto thy brother, to thy poor, and to thy needy, in thy land. And if thy brother, an Hebrew man, or an Hebrew woman, be sold unto thee, and serve thee six years; then in the seventh year thou shalt let him go free from thee. And when thou sendest him out free from thee, thou shalt not let him go away empty. And thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman in the land of Egypt, and the LORD thy God redeemed thee: therefore I command thee this thing to day.
Acts 10: But Peter said, Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten any thing that is common or unclean. And the voice spake unto him again the second time, What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common.
The Bible is clear that we must not be a community that mistreats people based on differences. If anything, Deuteronomy calls on us to remember that we are all immigrants one way or another. We are all different but we are all creations of God. The Book of Acts teaches us that we cannot call other people dirty, trashy, and unclean when from one blood God made all people.
We cannot call unclean what God has made. How can we put our hands on the Bible when we are sworn into public office and not try to live by what the pages say?
One North Carolina is the call of our state whether we are black, white, Hispanic, Asian, or Native American. We are a part of one North Carolina. For our dear sheriff, or any elected official, to say what has been said about a whole nationality of people and to do it in a moment of thoughtful reflection, not in a blurp, is a violation of public office. We call on Sheriff Bizzell, as an act of love for him, to resign.