Religion: Jesus the Liberator?

Signs of industrial affluence greeted the visitors—some 200 Protestant and Roman Catholic theologians, social scientists and assorted activists from North and South America—almost from the moment they arrived in Detroit last week. Even in a recession year, the Goodyear billboard near the airport was totting up by the seconds the autos manufactured in 1975: 3,835,001; 3,835,002. But deeper in the city the scene turned bleak: shuttered stores, decaying neighborhoods, jobless men wandering the streets. The contrast seemed particularly telling to the travelers, who had come to the Motor City for a conference on...

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