Who’s Afraid of Social Justice?

Brian Dijkema
Brian Dijkema is the Vice President of External Affairs with Cardus, and an editor of Comment. Prior to joining Cardus, Brian worked for almost a decade in labor relations in Canada after completing his master’s degree with Cardus Senior Fellow, Jonathan Chaplin. He has also done work on international human rights, with a focus on labor, economic, and social rights in Latin America and China.

Many, witnessing the fever swamps of university campuses and the chaos and violence of antifa movements, have decided to just chuck it. So-called “Social Justice Warriors” are off their rockers, and we should treat them the way we’d treat a mad bull. Some opt for a policy of avoidance, while others—think of the work by magazines such as Quillette—opt to meet the rampaging creatures head-on.

Similar postures are present in the church in North America. This is especially true among various confessional churches, who often see social justice as a Trojan horse under which liberal social and ethical agendas will be smuggled into the church, and individual freedoms relinquished to an all-powerful central state.

But this is only true if social justice is defined and lived out in ways that are antithetical to 2000 years of Christian social thought and action and the historical witness of the church. But social justice need not be defined that way. There are good, theologically sound, reasons to embrace social justice. Here’s why.

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