Monday, March 17, 2008

Rev. Jeremiah Wright. If the name doesn't sound familiar, then do an internet search and pay close attention to what you find. The name will certainly become more familiar in the media, especially if Barack Obama wins the Democrat nomination and we get closer to the general election.

Rev. Wright is Barack Obama's pastor and spiritual mentor. He presided over Obama's wedding. He baptized Obama's children. Obama has been a member of his church for nearly 20 years. And he has a history of saying some vile things about America. Some of these things include statements that America is no better than Al Qaeda, that the US government has facilitated the spread of AIDS to kill minorities, that America has "raped" every corner of the globe, and one of his sermons includes the phrase "God damn America" multiple times. Supporters will defend the remarks and say they are taken out of context. I personally find it hard to take a claim that the US is deliberately killing blacks with AIDS out of context. But that's what they say.

In Obama's defense, he states that he was only recently made aware of Wright's remarks and that he adamantly disagrees with them. He stands by Wright as a friend and spiritual mentor, but he denounces the man's anti-US rhetoric. Fair enough.

Pundits say this is going to hurt him badly. Tonight, O'Reilly cited a recent poll showing a 5% drop in Obama's favorability rating since the story broke. And now for my observations:

First, Hillary Clinton is noticeably silent on the issue. She hasn't responded and she doesn't have to. The story speaks for itself. The less she says the better for her. John McCain has made a statement that everyone has friends with whom they don't always agree. He has decided not to get muddy. The GOP in general has also remained silent. Rest assured, that won't last as we get closer to the general election.

I don't think this will hurt Obama in the remainder of the primary race. Granted, many Latinos will reject Wright's rhetoric, and many Jews will not be comfortable with the man's close association with Louis Farrakhan, but Obama's support among those groups wasn't very high to begin with. The fact is, many on the Left and in the Democrat party actually agree with Wright's remarks. There is strong anti-US sentiment on the Left, so I don't see Obama losing that much support among the Left. However, if this story resurfaces during the general election, it WILL hurt Obama. Mainstream Americans will reject this mess and rightfully so.

There is something that bugs me about this. Obama has been a member of this church for 20 years and yet claims he knew nothing about Wright's opinions. I find that impossible to believe. If even my most casual of acquaintances held Wright's beliefs I would pick up on it. And this man has been Obama's pastor and spiritual mentor for the past 20 years who has repeatedly spewed his hatred from the pulpit. These aren't isolated comments. There is no way Obama wasn't aware of Wright's beliefs and rhetoric. For the first time in this campaign, I believe Obama is lying. And I've been more than fair towards him despite my disagreement with his politics, so my sentiments shouldn't be discarded as partisan. At the very least his judgment is in question if he is willing to closely associate, as a US Senator and presidential candidate, with someone who has such vile hatred of America. Is this the judgment of a US President?

But there's more. There was the story of Obama not wearing the US flag on his lapel. Then the story of him not properly covering his heart during the national anthem. Then the story of his wife's comments about being proud of her country. Independently these things may not be a big deal and I would generally dismiss them as isolated and anecdotal. But with the Wright issue, I'm beginning to wonder if there is a pattern here. Obama is adored by socialists and neo-Marxists, and the mainstream media (the center of American Marxism) has buried the Wright story. Is this a pattern? I can't help but wonder how Obama truly feels about America, despite having read one of his books. It certainly warrants discussion.

Obama is in a tough spot. The more he distances himself from Wright, the more he looks afraid of his pastor and friend for 20 years. There really isn't anything he can do to help the situation and is left basically hoping it goes away. I still think he wins the nomination without a problem, which may be a problem for Democrats because they know the GOP won't let this story die. Even if McCain won't do it, you better believe the GOP party will be airing Wright's comments all over the place. The Democrats are having a tough time shaking their reputation as being "anti-American" and this doesn't help. I'm sure there are many in the party wondering if they bet on the wrong horse. Putting this guy up against a bona fide war hero and former POW is going to be an electoral disaster for Democrats. That's fine with me. Minimizing socialism in American government is always a good thing. As for Obama, I'd like to know how he truly feels about America, because now I'm wondering just how truthful the man has been during his campaign.


Anonymous said...


Whereas I agree that the Jeremiah Wright matter will be a non issue in the primary race, my money is that it will be a non issue in the general election. Yes, Rush Limbaugh and Bill O'Reily and those similarly situated will flog it to death but my position is that these pundits only preach to the choir. I just do not think a undecided voter will think to himself: "The guy's former pastor is a certified nutter so I better vote for Hillary Clinton or John McCain."(as the situation requires.)

As for the rest, has it really come to this? The litmus test for patriotism is wearing a flag lapel pin; or covering your heart during the national anthem instead of just singing it. B/c if this is to what public opinion has reduced, this country has deeper problems than I thought.


The Loop Garoo Kid

Dan Trabue said...

There is strong anti-US sentiment on the Left, so I don't see Obama losing that much support among the Left.

Wright's comments are only "anti-US" if you include overt and institutional racism and oppression (which is what Wright condemned in the quotes I've seen) are part of the American Way. I don't think they are, therefore, I don't think his comments are anti-US.

Now, some of his comments border on paranoid ("giving" AIDS to black folk, providing drugs to black communities), but given the history in which Wright grew up in, I'm inclined to give him some grace.

My biggest objection to his comments is that there was WAYY too much politicking for a particular candidate (Obama) from the pulpit. You can criticize and support policies from the pulpit but you CAN'T endorse candidates, and his comments were an indirect endorsement. That is my main problem with Wright's comments.

As to the charges of racism or hatred, well, they just don't hold up to reality - he did NOT say anything derogatory about a race group, he criticized gov't. And he was mostly right on. But we all know that criticizing the gov't is not the same as hating the US.

In the context of what he said, it's a flat out ridiculous charge.

Dan Trabue said...

As to the larger race, while I can see already that many on the Rabid Right are salivating thinking they can destroy Obama with this, I don't think so. He delivered a magnificent address today, I believe effectively turning this potential negative into a positive statement about where we need to go with race relations in our nation.

I don't agree with his all his policies, but his delivery is masterful. I still think he's most likely our next President.


Three Sharp Left-of-Center Comments
opposing your position, John.

Add this one I've lifted from David Geffen:

"All Politicians Lie, but OBAMA
does it with such ease, it's troubling!"


Every Day, as I sit at this keyboard, hoping that I'm given the eloquence to explain the profiles in courage of young, and not so young men and women in war zones in the lands of the Tigris & Euphrates Rivers, and in the higher elevations of Afganistan.

Why do they fight? Why risk their lives and healthy bodies, knowing that many at home have no clue of them, their daily routine, or why they volunteer for another tour.

It's for the future of a great nation, their families future, and hope for a better world. That's why.

The mindless, faceless critics? There will always be those people. The Appeasers, and the talking heads.

But there are also people that are aware, and do have a realistic view of wars ugliness, and what it all means as time marches on. Another day away from home, and family.

Another day at war. reb



Dan Trabue Sez,

"As to the charges of racism or hatred...he did NOT say anything derogatory about a race or group".

Well today, CNN & Fox both quoted
this looney-tune as making cracks not just about "whitey" anymore, now it's about the ITALIANS looking down their Garlic Noses!

Lame Apologists for the Far-Out Left might do better in finding a more profitable emotional outlet; facts speak louder and more clearly than off-key political bias. reb