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March 24, 2008

Barack Obama Condescends on Jeremiah Wright Affair


On 9/11: “We have supported state terrorism . . . and now we are indignant because the stuff we have done overseas is now brought right back to our own front yards. America's chickens are coming home to roost.”


On blacks in America: “The government gives them the drugs, builds bigger prisons, passes a three-strike law and then wants us to sing ‘God Bless America.’ No, no, no, God damn America, that’s in the Bible for killing innocent people. God damn America for treating our citizens as less than human. God damn America for as long as she acts like she is God and she is supreme.”


On HIV: “The government lied about inventing the HIV virus as a means of genocide against people of color.”


On racial warfare: “Black men turning on black men – that is fighting the wrong enemy.”


On the USA: “White America, U.S. of KKKA.”


These are the words of Reverend Jeremiah Wright, of the Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago. They are not taken out of context – as if there is an appropriate context for them. They are the words of a paranoid liar, a harmful shepherd and a bigot. And they are the recurring comments of a man whom Barack Obama, possibly the next president of the United States, has for two decades adopted as his family’s spiritual guide.


It is somewhat ironic that Obama has so vehemently denied being a Muslim that he has drawn scrutiny to his actual church, which is most certainly going to hurt his candidacy. This is not surprising, considering he chose as his vehicle to God a congregation that describes itself as “an African people [remaining] true to our native land, the mother continent,” as committed to “Africa,” as allegiant “to all black leadership who espouse and embrace the Black Value System,” and as disavowing of the “Pursuit of ‘Middleclassness.’” (Maybe someone ought to tell Obama that this is why his beloved middle class is shrinking).


Can you imagine, say, John McCain belonging to a white church where the pastor refers to 9/11 as the “chickens coming home to roost,” asks God to “damn America,” blames the government for spreading a virus to exterminate whites, calls America “Black America, the U.S. of Black Panther America,” and says white men turning on white men is “fighting the wrong enemy?” Can you imagine how the electorate would react had McCain belonged to a congregation describing itself as “committed to Europe, the mother continent,” or as allegiant to white leadership?


That scenario would not, and should not, be acceptable to most. Likewise, Obama’s choice of family spiritual guide, a man on whom he has lavished praise and to whom he has exposed his innocent children, should very much be an issue in this presidential race. Few people are more personally influential that one’s chosen spiritual guide. And the fact that Obama has chosen a paranoid bigot who hates America as his decades-long religious advisor should not be agreeable with any American voter.


If there was any opportunity for Obama to redeem himself from the poor choices he has made, it would have come in the form of a flat-out denunciation of Rev. Wright and his beliefs, coupled with an expression of regret for his intimate association with Wright over the years. Instead, in a much-discussed speech last week that was supposed to address the issue, Obama justified his association with Wright, excused Wright’s behavior and went on to condescendingly change the subject from the matter at hand to a vague and general discussion of race in America.


But what little Obama did say about the Wright issue was nauseating. “I can no more disown him than I can disown the black community,” said Obama about Wright.




This insinuation that Wright’s beliefs are a reflection of American blacks’ philosophy might possibly be the single most destructive anti-black statement made this decade, especially coming from someone as high profile as Barack Obama. Could he have been any more condescending to the black community?


No, Barack. You can disown an America-hating loon while heartily embracing the overwhelmingly religious, rational and patriotic black community. Do not insult the majority of blacks by telling them that they cannot be distinguished from the likes of Wright.


Obama has been running as the first-ever “post-racial” candidate for the presidency. Incidentally, no campaign has ever seen as much discussion of race, mostly due to Obama himself. At every opportunity he gets, Obama reminds audiences of his diverse background.


Instead of expressing regret about his intimacy with Wright, Obama chooses to push the whole country into a discussion of race, which, irrelevant of its merits, distracts from his real problem.


The Obama campaign took Geraldine Ferraro’s comments about his race from the obscure pages of a local California newspaper to every national news network.


Obama is the most racial presidential candidate American has ever seen. He must stop portraying himself otherwise, must apologize to the black community and must cease condescending to the country.


But although that would make him a better person, it would still not make him fit to be president. His long and deep relationship with Wright already has raised questions about his qualifications for the highest office in the land. His continued refusal to disown a personal spiritual guide who prays for God to damn America can only confirm that Obama is far from being even marginally adequate to occupy the Oval Office.


© 2008 North Star Writers Group. May not be republished without permission.


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