U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Dr. Ben Carson has warned that the African American race—and also the white race—”is being manipulated” to “divide” Americans and “create chaos.”

Speaking at the Values Voters Summit in Washington, on Thursday, Sept. 24, Carson lamented that even though the country is no longer experiencing situations of racism as it was decades ago, “this election season, everything is race.”

“And, obviously, it’s being manipulated along those lines,” Carson said, according to a Breitbart News report.

“Things have changed so incredibly dramatically in this country, but in order to create the kind of chaos that’s necessary to make people want a change, you divide them, you divide them in every way you possibly can: by race, by gender, by age, by income,” he explained.

Dr. Carson assured that the American people “are not each other’s enemies.”

He added that most Americans, when they sit down and talk to each other, agree on about 90 percent of the issues.

Those who try to manipulate the public “take the ten percent that you don’t agree on, and they just try to format that into the biggest thing in the world, and keep throwing it in front of your face. Night after night, day after day,” he added.

In a dialogue with radio host and Family Research Action Council President Tony Perkins, Carson explained how those causing civil unrest across the country are manipulating Americans.

“And you combine that with the fact that, because of our history, which is imperfect—you know slavery and Jim Crow and all of these things that have happened—it’s relatively easy to convince some people, no matter how good their life is, that they’re victims,” he said.

“And that somebody else has created that problem. And, at the same time, you take another segment of society—white people—and you convince them that they’re guilty. They may be the nicest people in the world … but, because of the color of your skin, you are guilty and you owe. And it’s a bad combination—guilt and victimhood—and it creates incredibly bad policies,” he said.

The Way Forward

Amid the climate described by Carson, Perkins asked him, “What’s the way forward, especially for people of faith?”

“Well, people of faith, I think, really need to ask themselves, what do they believe? Do you believe, for instance, in killing babies? Is that consistent with your faith? Do you believe in destroying someone else’s livelihood because you disagree with them? Is that something that’s consistent with your faith? Do you believe in calling people nasty names and making their lives difficult? Is that the kind of love that the Bible tells us about?,” answered Carson.

“And, you know, when you begin to really go down the list and ask these questions of yourself, I think it may, in many cases, begin to change the way that you think about things, and also relationships. One of the things that many people come to understand very quickly is that when you know someone on a personal level, a lot of things become irrelevant to you.  Certainly, the color of their skin becomes irrelevant to you. But there are many factors that completely disappear when you know someone.  And it’s very important to get to know people,” he said.

Amid the heated debates in America today, Carson urged his fellow citizens to take a stand for what they believe in and for their values.

“If you believe in the freedoms that are guaranteed to us in our Constitution, including the First Amendment—freedom of religion, and freedom of speech—but you don’t stand up for what you believe in, you cower in the corner and hope no one calls you a racist or whatever other name … you’re going to end up losing those freedoms,” he concluded.