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Why Support the Occupy Movement?

Tanner, Kathryn

I would like to provide a new angle on the Occupy Movement from a Christian point of view, specifically from the standpoint of my own work as a Christian theologian. Christians, I believe, should be supportive of the Occupy Movement and not simply for the obvious religious reasons. What are those obvious reasons? Christian concerns about social justice, Christian concerns especially for the poor, for all those disadvantaged and downtrodden, marginalized and harmed by forms of social exclusion and exploitation—such concerns clearly overlap with issues that the Occupy Movement has now brought to the forefront of our national consciousness: economic inequity and the economic plight of the 99 percent woefully underserved by our political and economic system since the financial crisis hit. Christianity and the Occupy Movement are closely aligned on these grounds of shared concern—concerns about injustice and about the economic disadvantage suffered by so many. But more than this, I believe that basic beliefs of Christianity contain an alternative vision of economic life that helps make sense of and pull together coherently the multiple strands of our economic and political predicament targeted for protest by the Occupy Movement—that’s what I want to argue now. I’ll try to show what this alternative Christian vision for our economic lives is, what the multiple concerns of the Occupy protest are, and how that Christian vision of economy brings those multiple strands of protest together.

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Union Seminary Quarterly Review

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Union Theological Seminary
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September 16, 2015
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