Archive for the ‘divisive’ Category

The Audacity of Obama-Wright Rhetoric

March 30, 2008

By Thomas Sowell
The Washington Times
March 30, 2008
It is painful to watch defenders of Barack Obama tying themselves into knots trying to evade the obvious.

Some are saying that Senator Obama cannot be held responsible for what his pastor, Jeremiah Wright, said. In their version of events, Barack Obama just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time — and a bunch of mean-spirited people are trying to make something out of it.

It makes a good story, but it won’t stand up under scrutiny.

Barack Obama’s own account of his life shows that he consciously sought out people on the far left fringe. In college, “I chose my friends carefully,” he said in his first book, “Dreams From My Father.”

These friends included “Marxist professors and structural feminists and punk rock performance poets” — in Obama’s own words — as well as the “more politically active black students.” He later visited a former member of the terrorist Weatherman underground, who endorsed him when he ran for state senator.

Obama didn’t just happen to encounter Jeremiah Wright, who just happened to say some way out things. Jeremiah Wright is in the same mold as the kinds of people Barack Obama began seeking out in college — members of the left, anti-American counter-culture.

In Shelby Steele’s brilliantly insightful book about Barack Obama — “A Bound Man” — it is painfully clear that Obama was one of those people seeking a racial identity that he had never really experienced in growing up in a white world. He was trying to become a convert to blackness, as it were — and, like many converts, he went overboard.

Nor has Obama changed in recent years. His voting record in the U.S. Senate is the furthest left of any Senator. There is a remarkable consistency in what Barack Obama has done over the years, despite inconsistencies in what he says.

The irony is that Obama’s sudden rise politically to the level of being the leading contender for his party’s presidential nomination has required him to project an entirely different persona, that of a post-racial leader who can heal divisiveness and bring us all together.

The ease with which he has accomplished this chameleon-like change, and entranced both white and black Democrats, is a tribute to the man’s talent and a warning about his reliability.

There is no evidence that Obama ever sought to educate himself on the views of people on the other end of the political spectrum, much less reach out to them. He reached out from the left to the far left.
That’s bringing us all together?

Is “divisiveness” defined as disagreeing with the agenda of the left?
Who on the left was ever called divisive by Obama before that became politically necessary in order to respond to revelations about Jeremiah Wright?

One sign of Obama’s verbal virtuosity was his equating a passing comment by his grandmother — “a typical white person,” he says — with an organized campaign of public vilification of America in general and white America in particular, by Jeremiah Wright.

Since all things are the same, except for the differences, and
different except for the similarities, it is always possible to make things look similar verbally, however different they are in the real world.

Among the many desperate gambits by defenders of Senator Obama and Jeremiah Wright is to say that Wright’s words have a “resonance” in the black community.

There was a time when the Ku Klux Klan’s words had a resonance among whites, not only in the South but in other states. Some people joined the KKK in order to advance their political careers. Did that make it OK? Is it all just a matter of whose ox is gored?

While many whites may be annoyed by Jeremiah Wright’s words, a year from now most of them will probably have forgotten about him. But many blacks who absorb his toxic message can still be paying for it, big- time, for decades to come.

Why should young blacks be expected to work to meet educational standards, or even behavioral standards, if they believe the message that all their problems are caused by whites, that the deck is stacked against them? That is ultimately a message of hopelessness, however much audacity it may have.

Obama confronts racial division in US, Talks About Rev. Wright

March 18, 2008
By NEDRA PICKLER and MATT APUZZO, Associated Press Writers

PHILADELPHIA – Democratic Sen. Barack Obama on Tuesday tried to stem damage from divisive comments delivered by his pastor, while bluntly addressing anger between blacks and whites in the most racially pointed speech yet of his presidential campaign.

Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama D-Ill., speaks ...
Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama D-Ill., speaks about race during an address in Philadelphia, Tuesday, March 18, 2008.
(AP Photo/Alex Brandon) 

Obama confronted America’s legacy of racial division head on, tackling black grievance, white resentment and the uproar over his former pastor’s incendiary statements. Drawing on his half-black, half-white roots as no other presidential hopeful could, Obama asserted: “This union may never be perfect, but generation after generation has shown that it can always be perfected.”

Obama expressed understanding of the passions on both sides in what he called “a racial stalemate we’ve been stuck in for years.”

The Right Stuff or The Wright Stuff

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Obama’s Pastor “Misunderstood” — Senator to Give Race Address Today

March 18, 2008

By John E. Carey
Peace and Freedom

In a page one story, the Washington Post explained the feelings at Barak Obama’s Trinity United Church of Christ.

His flock says the Rev. Jeremiah Wright is the victim of “a modern day lynching.”

The question is how much will this hurt Senator Barak Obama in his quest for the White House not IF this will hurt Mr. Obama.

“A simmering controversy over Wright’s provocative rhetoric and his connection to Sen. Barack Obama ignited last week after some of his old sermons were aired, prompting the Democratic presidential candidate to condemn them and severing Wright’s connection to the campaign. But inside this mega-church that Wright built up from financial ruin, his most loyal listeners offered a different interpretation: It is Wright, and black theology in its entirety, that is misunderstood,” wrote Post reporter Eli Saslow. 

Wright’s protege, the Rev. Otis Moss III, stepped to the pulpit Sunday to say, “No matter what they want,” Moss said, “we will not shut up.”
Supporters say that the Rev. Jeremiah Wright is misunderstood.
Supporters say that the Rev. Jeremiah Wright is misunderstood. (Brian Jackson – AP)

Reverend Wright’s raucus sermons have caused a great deal of discussion and concern amid the Democrat’s primary presidential election campaign.

And Senator Obama now says he will discuss his views on race in a major address to just after 10 AM eastern time.  CNN and the Fox News Channel are expected to carry the Senator’s remarks.

We interviewed a seventy-something year old Black American woman yesterday who told us, “In 1954 I was in college.  When I went to register to vote, I was given a literacy exam by an illiterate White man at the registration office.  He could never have passed it —  but White people didn’t even take it.  The exam was meant to keep Black Americans from voting.  So I know racism.”

“Rev. Wright must have experienced a lot of hurt that makes him say what he says.  But his views are not the views of Barak Obama.  The pastor has one view and Barak has another.  Each has ideas formed by their experience and each has a right to speak out,” she told us.

Several others we spoke to agreed with her.

But the voters will decide this issue.

The sad thing is that race has become a very divisive issue in a campaign meant to unite people toward a common good.

Congregation Defends Obama’s Ex-Pastor

On Defensive, Obama Plans Talk on Race

Bill Clinton Rejects Criticism Over Race

Senator Obama: “Give Me A Break”

Outspoken Minister Out Of Obama Campaign

Senator Obama: That’s Hate Speech, Not a “Sermon”

Obama is now unelectable

Obama Strives To Keep Divisive Minister At a Distance

March 14, 2008

By Brian DeBos
The Washington Times
March 14, 2008

The Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr., a mentor and friend to Sen. Barack Obama for 20 years, in a recent sermon shouted: “God damn America” for its history of slavery, racism and oppression against its black citizens.
Mr. Wright — who baptized Mr. Obama at the Trinity United Church of Christ, presided over his wedding there and inspired him in his career as a community activist and a politician — has been a lightning rod for the campaign from the very beginning.
When Mr. Obama announced his candidacy for president, Mr. Wright, who is also a member of Mr. Obama’s National African American Religious Leadership Committee, was asked not to appear because of his “black power” social views, which many have criticized as separatist, forcing Mr. Obama to distance himself from his home pastor.
He has given many fiery sermons in his career and has called Nation of Islam head Louis Farrakhan his friend, but it is his final sermon as head pastor, given Feb. 10, that has called his relationship with Mr. Obama and his views into question again.
“Hillary was not a black boy raised in a single-parent home. Barack was. Barack knows what it means to be a black man living in a country and a culture that is controlled by rich white people,” Mr. Wright said.
“Hillary can never know that. Hillary ain’t never been called a n—-er.”
Mr. Wright went on to detail all the ways in which Hillary is not black enough to represent black Americans, and he also attempted to paint Mr. Obama as a Jesus figure, saying his life parallels that of Christ.
“Jesus was a poor black man who lived in a country and who lived in a culture that was controlled by rich white people. The Romans were rich. The Romans were Italians, which means they were Europeans, which means they were white, and they controlled everything in Jesus’ country.”

Obama’s Pastor Known for “Inflammatory Rhetoric”

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See also coverage from The New York Post: