March 18, 2008

"I can no more disown him than I can disown the black community. I can no more disown him than I can my white grandmother."

Barack Obama gives his big speech in response to the uproar over Jeremiah Wright. Brief excerpts:
I have already condemned, in unequivocal terms, the statements of Reverend Wright that have caused such controversy....

... Reverend Wright’s comments were not only wrong but divisive, divisive at a time when we need unity; racially charged at a time when we need to come together...

Given my background, my politics, and my professed values and ideals, there will no doubt be those for whom my statements of condemnation are not enough....

But the truth is, that isn’t all that I know of the man....

And this helps explain, perhaps, my relationship with Reverend Wright. As imperfect as he may be, he has been like family to me...

I can no more disown him than I can disown the black community. I can no more disown him than I can my white grandmother...

This is the reality in which Reverend Wright and other African-Americans of his generation grew up....

Even for those blacks who did make it, questions of race, and racism, continue to define their worldview in fundamental ways. For the men and women of Reverend Wright’s generation, the memories of humiliation and doubt and fear have not gone away; nor has the anger and the bitterness of those years. That anger may not get expressed in public, in front of white co-workers or white friends. But it does find voice in the barbershop or around the kitchen table. At times, that anger is exploited by politicians, to gin up votes along racial lines, or to make up for a politician’s own failings.

And occasionally it finds voice in the church on Sunday morning, in the pulpit and in the pews. [T]he anger is real; it is powerful; and to simply wish it away, to condemn it without understanding its roots, only serves to widen the chasm of misunderstanding that exists between the races.
Missing here, I think, is an explicit acknowledgment that Wright is not merely expressing the anger he feels but that he is leading people into anger, keeping anger fresh and alive.
The profound mistake of Reverend Wright’s sermons is not that he spoke about racism in our society. It’s that he spoke as if our society was static; as if no progress has been made; as if this country – a country that has made it possible for one of his own members to run for the highest office in the land and build a coalition of white and black; Latino and Asian, rich and poor, young and old -- is still irrevocably bound to a tragic past. But what we know -- what we have seen – is that America can change. That is true genius of this nation. What we have already achieved gives us hope – the audacity to hope – for what we can and must achieve tomorrow.
Again, Obama speaks as if Wright were only expressing his beliefs, and he does not say that Wright was, from his powerful leadership position, instilling these beliefs in many others.

But the key question isn't whether Obama puts Wright down strongly enough. It's what Obama himself is. Would he, as a leader in the most powerful position, instill this destructive thinking in others? That doesn't at all seem to be what he does, and the rest of the speech is largely a demonstration that he does not:
I would not be running for President if I didn’t believe with all my heart that this is what the vast majority of Americans want for this country. This union may never be perfect, but generation after generation has shown that it can always be perfected. And today, whenever I find myself feeling doubtful or cynical about this possibility, what gives me the most hope is the next generation – the young people whose attitudes and beliefs and openness to change have already made history in this election.
He ends the speech with a saccharine anecdote about a decidedly un-angry old black man who tells a young white woman — Ashley — that he's supporting Obama "because of Ashley." Mustard sandwiches were involved. Did that distract you from what he did and didn't do in the speech?

I'd say he did not do very much — other than to resist condemning Wright and to model his socially acceptable attitudes and generate a feeling — I'm sure you didn't all feel it — that we need unite behind this man if the terrible divisions over race are going to end.

ADDED: Andrew Sullivan felt it: "I have never felt more convinced that this man's candidacy - not this man, his candidacy - and what he can bring us to achieve - is an historic opportunity. This was a testing; and he did not merely pass it by uttering safe bromides." And it felt all Christian to him.

Jonathan Chait thinks it worked, but only because Obama is black:
My first reaction is that the speech was extremely smart and intellectually subtle....

He may be liberated to operate at a high intellectual level in public because he's black. I'm not trying to be Gerry Ferraro here; let me explain. Candidates like John Kerry and (even moreso) Al Gore were also very smart, but constantly forced to dumb it down lest they be tagged as out-of-touch elitists. Since the egghead image is so at odds with the prevailing stereotypes about African-Americans, he has much less to fear by speaking at a high intellectual level.
Oh, bullshit. You may not be trying to be Gerry Ferraro here, but the only nonsexual difference between you and Geraldine is that you're for Obama and she's on the other side. And here's a clue: John Kerry is not very smart.

Righty Paul Mirengoff delivers a left-handed compliment:
Although Obama's speech is not without its evasions, I consider it a courageous one by usual political standards. He has refused to walk away from Wright's black liberation theology when it might well have been expedient to do so. The rest of us now should have the courage to take Obama at his word and decide whether it is acceptable to elect as president of the United States someone who carries Rev. Wright around as part of him, and who takes his ranting seriously.
Kathryn Jean Lopez does a pithy paraphrase:
Damn straight, Rev. Wright is angry. That's how I wound up at his church. That's why I stay there. I'm mad too, I just control it better. Now let's get electing me president so we can all feel good.
Of course, that's completely unfair. Even if he can be understood to have said something along the lines of "I'm mad too," he distinguished himself from Wright not in hiding his anger, but in believing we can change the things that cause the anger.

AND: Don't miss Shelby Steele's column in the WSJ (written before today's speech, but on point):
How does one "transcend" race in this church?...

What could he have been thinking? Of course he wasn't thinking. He was driven by insecurity, by a need to "be black" despite his biracial background. And so fellow-traveling with a little race hatred seemed a small price to pay for a more secure racial identity. And anyway, wasn't this hatred more rhetorical than real?...

No matter his ultimate political fate, there is already enough pathos in Barack Obama to make him a cautionary tale. His public persona thrives on a manipulation of whites (bargaining), and his private sense of racial identity demands both self-betrayal and duplicity. His is the story of a man who flew so high, yet neglected to become himself.

Here's what Steele means by "bargaining":
Bargaining is a mask that blacks can wear in the American mainstream, one that enables them to put whites at their ease. This mask diffuses the anxiety that goes along with being white in a multiracial society. Bargainers make the subliminal promise to whites not to shame them with America's history of racism, on the condition that they will not hold the bargainer's race against him. And whites love this bargain -- and feel affection for the bargainer -- because it gives them racial innocence in a society where whites live under constant threat of being stigmatized as racist. So the bargainer presents himself as an opportunity for whites to experience racial innocence.
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ADDED: Michael Weiss at Slate quotes this from me: "I'd say he did not do very much — other than to resist condemning Wright and to model his socially acceptable attitudes and generate a feeling — I'm sure you didn't all feel it — that we need unite behind this man if the terrible divisions over race are going to end." Weiss interprets this to mean that I saw the speech as a failure. But that's not right. I know I wrote "he did not do very much," but that doesn't mean it was a mistake not to do very much. Obama did not condemn Jeremiah Wright. He did not reach for a "Sister Souljah moment." He didn't present himself in a new light. But, in a way — within a narrow band — he did a lot, perhaps too much. It was all very subtle. He tried to be entirely inclusive, reaching out to everyone, and stepping on nobody's toes. He insisted both that we confront race and also that we get past it. There were complex contradictions in what he said, but his smoothly honed language made it possible for us to ignore these difficulties even as we could credit him with taking on an elaborately sophisticated problem. I think he meant to deal with his predicament this way. There's no reason to call that a failure.

AND: Mickey Kaus does a terrific job of identifying many of the contradictions you weren't supposed to notice.

259 comments:

1 – 200 of 259   Newer›   Newest»
Titan said...

I "felt" it - whatever that means. But I thought the speech was great. A complete contrast to Romney's screed. Obama did what he does best; show everyone that he understands their feelings and then guide them to his own position.

He pretty much stated that his white grandmother used to use the word "Nigger". I wonder how that felt to a small mixed child?

Titan said...

I also think you left out some key responses from Obama:

"For some, nagging questions remain. Did I know him to be an occasionally fierce critic of American domestic and foreign policy? Of course. Did I ever hear him make remarks that could be considered controversial while I sat in church? Yes. Did I strongly disagree with many of his political views? Absolutely – just as I’m sure many of you have heard remarks from your pastors, priests, or rabbis with which you strongly disagreed. ...

Given my background, my politics, and my professed values and ideals, there will no doubt be those for whom my statements of condemnation are not enough. Why associate myself with Reverend Wright in the first place, they may ask? Why not join another church? And I confess that if all that I knew of Reverend Wright were the snippets of those sermons that have run in an endless loop on the television and You Tube, or if Trinity United Church of Christ conformed to the caricatures being peddled by some commentators, there is no doubt that I would react in much the same way ...

But the truth is, that isn’t all that I know of the man. The man I met more than twenty years ago is a man who helped introduce me to my Christian faith, a man who spoke to me about our obligations to love one another; to care for the sick and lift up the poor. He is a man who served his country as a U.S. Marine ...

Some will see this as an attempt to justify or excuse comments that are simply inexcusable. I can assure you it is not. I suppose the politically safe thing would be to move on from this episode and just hope that it fades into the woodwork. We can dismiss Reverend Wright as a crank or a demagogue, just as some have dismissed Geraldine Ferraro, in the aftermath of her recent statements, as harboring some deep-seated racial bias.

But race is an issue that I believe this nation cannot afford to ignore right now. We would be making the same mistake that Reverend Wright made in his offending sermons about America – to simplify and stereotype and amplify the negative to the point that it distorts reality.

The fact is that the comments that have been made and the issues that have surfaced over the last few weeks reflect the complexities of race in this country that we’ve never really worked through – a part of our union that we have yet to perfect. And if we walk away now, if we simply retreat into our respective corners, we will never be able to come together and solve challenges like health care, or education, or the need to find good jobs for every American. ...

a similar anger exists within segments of the white community. Most working- and middle-class white Americans don’t feel that they have been particularly privileged by their race. Their experience is the immigrant experience – as far as they’re concerned, no one’s handed them anything, they’ve built it from scratch. They’ve worked hard all their lives, many times only to see their jobs shipped overseas or their pension dumped after a lifetime of labor. They are anxious about their futures, and feel their dreams slipping away; in an era of stagnant wages and global competition, opportunity comes to be seen as a zero sum game, in which your dreams come at my expense. So when they are told to bus their children to a school across town; when they hear that an African American is getting an advantage in landing a good job or a spot in a good college because of an injustice that they themselves never commit ed; when they’re told that their fears about crime in urban neighborhoods are somehow prejudiced, resentment builds over time. ...

sydney said...

"He pretty much stated that his white grandmother used to use the word "Nigger." I wonder how that felt to a small mixed child?"

It probably cut very deeply. Maybe that's why he's been a member of an angry church for 20 years.

Paul Zrimsek said...

Most of the real work in the speech is done by this pair of false alternatives:

We can dismiss Reverend Wright as a crank or a demagogue... But race is an issue that I believe this nation cannot afford to ignore right now.

The Drill SGT said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Drill SGT said...

I find his whole argument unconvincing. He has portrayed himself as a post-racism healer. Able to bind the wounds of racism and deliver America to promised land where black will join with white and red with blue. A new age in openness and transparency.

Show me the beef. Where has he demonstrated real tough leadrship on race? certainly not in his church. certainly not by allowing his young girls to be exposed to that demogogery.

What I see is a typical Chicago pol who uses race for political advantage and refuses to demonstrate either leadership or candor on the subject.

His conflating of wright with his grandma is sad.

His backsliding from "I never heard him say those awful things" is noticable

what is disappointing is that when Obama loses blacks will blame it on racism, when it really is an honesty and leadership issue.

titusgrandjetewithalaybackintothesplits said...

Let me guess wingnuts will hate it and moonbats will love it-there's a surprise.

Bitch, I was just reading back on some of the postings and saw you at a dream about me. I am not very tall. About 5'10. As far as being funny looking-how cruel-I am not funny looking. I don't look like Lurch.

Maybe you have even seen me before but didn't even realize it. I could of been in some cafe in Brooklyn when you were there or at your meet up in Madison during Christmas 2007 in the snow storm. Just being a fly on the wall.

ModNewt said...

"Given my background, my politics, and my professed values and ideals, there will no doubt be those for whom my statements of condemnation are not enough."

Ann's statements, and now other posts on this page will, prove this true. There is clearly nothing he can say that will make many, including Ann, happy.

The Emperor said...

Ann,

I think you should read the speech again. For those who care about civil rights, as you often claim to, this was a very sophisticated discussion of the current state of race in America.

Titan said...

Drill SGT: "Show me the beef"

I don't think you (and a lot of others) have ever understood Obama's point. It is not to "deliver America to promised land where black will join with white and red with blue". That's silly.

It's that those Americans who differ with us are not our enemies. Therefore, we should take the time to learn why they differ. To find common ground, and to work together where we can.

It's about replacing hate with disagreement, not replacing hate with love.

For example, can you imagine Al Sharpton saying what Obama said today?

"So when [Whites] are told to bus their children to a school across town; when they hear that an African American is getting an advantage in landing a good job or a spot in a good college because of an injustice that they themselves never committed; when they’re told that their fears about crime in urban neighborhoods are somehow prejudiced, resentment builds ...."

It's the lessons of To Kill a Mockingbird in candidate form.

George said...

Drill sgt--

You want to see the beef?

I will show you the whole cow.

This is a white racist society ruled by a vicious regime that is a state-sponsor of terrorism.

Apropos the 'John Adams' miniseries, we'all saw how the white Fathers dealt with slavery. Declaration of Indepeblackpendence my ass! And what happened to that black man who testified against that white man in the lobsterback trial? Didn't see any follow up on that.

I guess y'all don't know that Washington--when he was president--rotated his slaves in and out of New York City every 90 days, because it was against the law to keep them there longer.

Let's talk about the Wilmington Jim Crow coup d'etat of '98. Betchall never heard of that. It was a coup d'etat. Reparations shall be forthcoming.

And you thought that 30 years of Bud Lite commercials showing black and white men drinking together did something? All those Cafe Latte General Mills ads showing those happy black and white housewives laughing? It's not nothing. Gordy the Weatherman? He was very unhappy working for Mr. Lou Grant. That skinny Mary Tyler Moore? Hah! And let's not even get started about Ted Baxter.

The chickens they are home and roosting.

And that's no bull, baby.

Sloanasaurus said...

Did I strongly disagree with many of his political views? Absolutely – just as I’m sure many of you have heard remarks from your pastors, priests, or rabbis with which you strongly disagreed. ...

Rev. Wright was not expressing mere political views. He was expressing hatred of America, specifically what he believes to be white America. Michele Obama was also expressing a hatred of America.

Again, if McCain was in a church for 20 years that had an overriding theme of fulfilling the wants of white people, and then gave a lifetime achievement award to David Duke, McCain would be drummed out immediatly. Speeches saying his church had different political views would not work.

Liberals won't see a problem with the Obama-Wright connection because they already self-loathe, which is why they love Obama. However, independents will drift away from Obama's hatred connection never to return.

al said...

I was kind of hoping he'd explain why he's a member of a church that his own mother wouldn't feel welcome in?

titusgrandjetewithalaybackintothesplits said...

I had chicken marsala for dindin last night and shit out a perfectly good mushroom today.

It has the exact shape of a mushroom. Like a little "t" shape.

I found it so astonishing that I took a picture of it and sent it to my friends.

Bender said...

Was it enough?

The fact is that there are some who will not be convinced, that is, who refuse to be convinced, who do not want to be convinced, who look for reasons to continue to oppose, who refuse to look to the substance of what is said, and instead look for reasons to nit and pick and criticize so as to be able to continue their own animosity and their own bile.

There are some who refuse to be open to the idea of reconciliation. There are some who have no interest in healing divisions. There are some who verociously condemn the perceived "hate" of others, like Wright -- not engaging in love and charity themselves, but merely exercising the corrosive hate that they accuse others of.

"The anger is real; it is powerful; and to simply wish it away, to condemn it without understanding its roots, only serves to widen the chasm of misunderstanding that exists between the races."

Original Mike said...

Ann said: Missing here, I think, is an explicit acknowledgment that Wright is not merely expressing the anger he feels but that he is leading people into anger, keeping anger fresh and alive.

This is what I've been concerned about all along. But I think this does a passable job of addressing it:

"On the other end, we've heard my former pastor, Reverend Jeremiah Wright, use incendiary language to express views that have the potential not only to widen the racial divide, but views that denigrate both the greatness and the goodness of our nation; that rightly offend white and black alike."

and:

"But the remarks that have caused this recent firestorm weren't simply controversial. They weren't simply a religious leaders effort to speak out against perceived injustice. Instead, they expressed a profoundly distorted view of this country - a view that sees white racism as endemic, and that elevates what is wrong with America above all that we know is right with America; a view that sees the conflicts in the Middle East as rooted primarily in the actions of stalwart allies like Israel, instead of emanating from the perverse and hateful ideologies of radical Islam.

As such, Reverend Wrights comments were not only wrong but divisive, divisive at a time when we need unity; racially charged at a time when we need to come together"


I'm pretty satisfied.

titusgrandjetewithalaybackintothesplits said...

Oh Anthony Minghella died.

tomb1 said...

"The Speech" was a home run.

Hillary is toast, unless Obama loses huge in PA. Obama is still an opportunistic politician, but he's the best of the Democrats this year.

If you hate Democrats you're still gonna hate Obama, and if you're afraid of blacks then you'll still vote for McCain. But there's a large segment of the population that will rally to him.

It's gonna be a fun race! If only November would get here sooner....

Original Mike said...

I agree, Ann. I could have done without the mustard sandwiches as well.

Zeb Quinn said...

The sycophantic and obsequious MSM is slobbering all over it as the greatest speech of all time.

Me, I'm wondering whether it's way too little way too late, and whether come November he can ever get a plurality of the white male vote. I'm thinking that what with the whole Rev. Wright/Michelle drama that ship has sailed.

Pastafarian said...

So he can't disown him, for stating that (white) America created the HIV virus to kill blacks, and stating that we brought 9-11 on ourselves, because....he's "like family", he says some good things too, we're all imperfect, yada yada.

And because he couldn't "disown" him, this also apparently prevented him from leaving this church. He just had to bring his children there week after week to absorb this bile.

Obama may be slick in his presentation, and too clever to actually state his real opinions, but he's a racist himself. No one who found these views offensive would continue to bring their children to this church; unless they put the psychological welfare of their children below the political value of belonging to a large, influential church.

Either way, he's nauseating scum.

The Drill SGT said...

Titan said...It's that those Americans who differ with us are not our enemies. Therefore, we should take the time to learn why they differ. To find common ground, and to work together where we can.

I like the sentiment, but it's not something that wright preached and I don't believe Obama can deliver.

George said...And you thought that 30 years of Bud Lite commercials showing black and white men drinking together did something? All those Cafe Latte General Mills ads showing those happy black and white housewives laughing? It's not nothing. Gordy the Weatherman? He was very unhappy working for Mr. Lou Grant. That skinny Mary Tyler Moore? Hah! And let's not even get started about Ted Baxter.

The chickens they are home and roosting


I spent many years in the most racially equitable industry in America. The US Army. I saw black soldiers crying over the bodies of white buddies. I saw blood transfusions literally from white arms into black arms. One of my closest friends in the Army was a big black West Point office named Dupree. I served in Colonel Honore's (the father) Brigade.

The battlefield is a very colorblind place. I don't nee any lectures.

Revenant said...

So this is, what, the third or fourth different explanation we've heard from Obama? It makes more sense than his previous "I went to the church but I didn't inhale" line, I guess.

But this latest explanation is nonsense, too. Wright didn't suddenly become a racist and a bigot in recent years. The record shows that he has been that way for as long as Obama has known him. That means that this isn't a case of Obama overlooking the bigotry and racism of a loved one -- it is a case of Obama befriending a racist bigot and coming to love him like a family member. In other words, Wright's bigotry didn't bother Obama even when Wright was still just a passing acquaintance. Ok, so maybe if you've been going to a church for decades and the pastor starts going over the edge a bit, you put up with it. But when you've just joined a church and the pastor turns out to be a racist nut, do you stick around? Hell no you don't stick around -- unless you don't mind the racism.

And can I just say that I'm sick of the "old black people have an excuse for being racists and bigots" line? Guess what: white racists had the same damned excuse. They, too, had grown up in a racist society that taught them to act a certain way. People need to face up to the fact that it doesn't matter WHY a person is a racist or a bigot; what matters is that he IS a racist and a bigot. The reasons for the bigotry are an explanation, not an excuse.

Maybe black people have good reasons to hate America. But that doesn't change the fact that people who hate America aren't fit to lead it or represent it. The President should love this country -- if he doesn't, trusting him with the power he'll have over it is unwise.

rhhardin said...

I can no more disown him than I can disown the black community.

As a matter of fact, disown is exactly what you can do with a relative. That's exactly the word for it.

AllenS said...

The Drill SGT said...

"I saw black soldiers crying over the bodies of white buddies. I saw blood transfusions literally from white arms into black arms."

Yeah, me too. I'll tell ya right now, those that don't have that experience, will still call people who won't accept Obama, a racist. They have to do that to give themselves that brief feeling of moral superiority.

ricpic said...

In a Barak Obama presidency race would be front and center, whether it be race as bargaining chip or race as threat.

America as a color blind meritocracy would be over, finished, done. You say America has not been a color blind meritocracy to this point? It has been an attempt at that ideal. That would be over. And American exceptionalism would be over as well.

ZPS said...

I thought the speech was brilliant.

Of course, I am of the opinion that most everything that Obama's pastor said was pretty much spot on.

But I also know that "god damn America" won't play well with most context-challenged Americans. So Obama had to do something.

And thank god he did. He didn't pull some pussy John Kerry move and bow down to the Fox News wingnuts. He didn't toss out some half-assed Hillary apology and look like a shadowy sneak.

He did the smartest, best thing by simultaneously condemning the remarks while illuminating the reasons for why such bitter remarks exist in black America. He inspires change and togetherness through this, which is 100% consistent with his campaign thus far. I think this is all a wonderful thing to happen as it proves what kind of an honest, intelligent man he is.

And Ann is upset because Obama doesn't condemn the pastor for (potentially) instilling anger in others? Duh. By virture of the fact that he condemns the remarks, he obviously condemns their implications and effects on others. What do you want him to do...reject and denounce the entire congregation!? Jesus!

Tim said...

"It's that those Americans who differ with us are not our enemies. Therefore, we should take the time to learn why they differ. To find common ground, and to work together where we can."

And this explains Obama's criticism of Bush how, exactly?

Oh-Bah-Muh's one virtue was that of a Black American who might actually advance the racial healing necessary in the U.S. But his 20-year affiliation with the Reverend Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr., exposed the lie and leaves Oh-Bah-Muh as just another Leftist who wants to recast America into something it isn't, and ought not to be.

So today's speech is more pablum for those searching for some meaning in their lives outside of family, church (on the off-chance they even go to church) and work. Those mouthing the words don't believe it, don't live it, and won't work for it.

They just want to be part of something, free-ride on the good feelings of being in the group; free-ride on the good feelings of enacting the socialist agenda in which they get free goodies at someone else's expense. It's the mindlessly stupid, feel-good "We Are The World" as a totem for governing the world's largest power and last, best hope for man, as if Iraq, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, Darfur, Tibet, China, Venezuela and countless others will just dial down and freedom will ring from every mountain top once the cosmopolitan, looks-like-the-world Oh-Bah-Muh is anointed Savior and President of the once-evil but now redeemed United States of America.

The idiots are suspending disbelief en masse, and are being played beyond their limited imaginations. It's a load of steaming sh*t that the self-alienated can't wait to swallow by the shovelful.

But in the end, the last laugh will be on them, as President-elect John McCain has a date with destiny and Chief Justice John G. Roberts on the West steps of the United States Capital at 1200 hours, 20 January 2009. And the idiots will wonder how it could possible happen, never realizing the power of self-delusion.

The Drill SGT said...

Titan said...
Drill SGT: "Show me the beef"

I don't think you (and a lot of others) have ever understood Obama's point. It is not to "deliver America to promised land where black will join with white and red with blue". That's silly.

It's that those Americans who differ with us are not our enemies. Therefore, we should take the time to learn why they differ. To find common ground, and to work together where we can.....snip...

It's the lessons of To Kill a Mockingbird in candidate form.


Titan, You make my point exactly, not your. Atticus Finch DID something. He stood up to the mob, spoke out on the issue and risked his life. Obama gives good speach, but has never done anything on race nor taken a tough position agains haters. No clip of him standing on the steps of the TUCC preaching aganst wright. No bill in Congress to ban AA, etc, etc

talk and more talk, not action, no leadership

PS: Obama sees to have a one strike rule for Ferraro and Imus, bt cuts Wright lot of slack for 20 years of hatred.

SteveR said...

Maybe it was good enough to placate those already inclined to support and thus gain him the nomination. I don't think a speech in March will help him in November so it could be a shallow comeback.

Greg said...

Ann - you must have missed this in yesterdays paper. Obama called for the dramatic expansion of the teaching of victimology and the grievance history of America to our school children.

You wrote:

>>But the key question isn't whether Obama puts Wright down strongly enough. It's what Obama himself is. Would he, as a leader in the most powerful position, instill this destructive thinking in others?<<

Tom Maguire has the links at Just One Minute.

Blue Moon said...

First of all, I loved the speech -- but I am already an Obama guy...
The "grandma" soundbite will be the one heard over and over again. The only think I think was missing was something like this" "Pastor Wright led me back to Jesus. This was the most important event in my life, and an act for which that I will literally be eternally greatful" or something like that -- that would have given McCain's advisors heart palpitations.

Second, what I think was shrewd from a political point of view is that he has removed a weapon from the democratic party's arsenal in a show of good faith (and self-preservation). When he says "Your pastor has said some wierd stuff too," he is basically saying that in the fall he will not try to tie Hagee, Parsley, et al around McCain's neck. He did not need to do that given McCain's refusal to disavow them. Of course, McCain can't use Wright against Obama. I'm sure Hillary doesn't want to go there because she does not seem like much of a regular church goer (she does attend prayer meetings with GOP senators though).

He needs to follow this up with lots and lots of stops in white middle PA -- talk to the blue hairs about mom and grandma. If he's lucky, someone will make a very un-pc comment to him on tape, and then he can show his post racial skills.

"You certainly are one smart colored fella. You aren't like all those other coloreds I've met. You have manners and are respectful."

"Thank you."

10 minutes later...
"There was a man at a coffee shop here in town who called me colored, and implied I was better than the rude black people he was used to. Now, we could get all offended, get in his face and try to 'educate' him. Instead, what we need to realize that we are all in this together. That we are called upon to love our neighbors as ourselves, and that every american is our neighbor. That the imprecise language of race is nothing compared to the extraordinary economic and national security challenges we face as a nation, as one people."

Revenant said...

There are some who refuse to be open to the idea of reconciliation.

The thing about all the talk of "reconciliation" is that white America doesn't have a problem with black people. There's nothing about our behavior that needs to change -- no action that we need to take.

"Reconciliation" is only necessary when both sides of a divide have a problem with the opposite side. When only ONE side has a problem you don't need reconciliation; you need for that side to get a grip.

Pastafarian said...

ZPS said he thought that most of what this pastor said was 'spot on'.

Let's assume for a moment that you're not including the statement that (white) America created HIV to infect and kill blacks.

Can we all agree that this is a disgusting, loathesome, racist statement?

So Obama continues to take his children to this church, despite such vile filth flowing from the pulpit. This leaves only two possibilities: Either he doesn't believe that it's vile, or he wants to subject his children to this.

Either way, Obama is loathesome.

sydney said...

Al said,

"I was kind of hoping he'd explain why he's a member of a church that his own mother wouldn't feel welcome in?"

He did explain. It was the mention of his white grandmother's racist comments. The fact that he spent his formative years with a grandmother who was a white racist and apparently wasn't inhibited about giving voice to her racism, makes me suspect that he's got a chip on his shoulder that's at least as large as Reverend Wright's.

I thought the speech was good and very eloquent, but in the end it's hard to believe that he's a "To Kill a Mockingbird candidate," as another commenter phrased it. I'm beginning to suspect he's just what Bill Clinton accused him of being - a prettier Jesse Jackson.

Michael_H said...

Trent Lott was hounded out of office because of one sentence he uttered about Strom Thurmond.

Robert Byrd remains in office despite having been a KKK member.

Lessee, Lott is a republican and Byrd is a democrat.

Yep, Obama's gonna get a pass on the whole Reverend Wright episode.

The speech was, by the way, very dull, and filled with the usual list of perceived wrongs and grievances.

George said...

Drill Sgt.:

As Ted Baxter said, "It's actually tomorrow in Tokyo. Do you realize that there are people alive here in Minneapolis who are already dead in Tokyo?"

The lectures are just beginning.

Revenant said...

Of course, McCain can't use Wright against Obama

Why not? What's it going to do, offend black voters? Come on, with a black Democrat on the ticket it is already safe bet the McCain will get the lowest percentage of the black vote of any Republican President in history.

Ok, so maybe Obama will respond by using Hagee to attack McCain. But even if Hagee was as close to McCain as Wright is to Obama -- which of course he isn't -- the fact is that Hagee's bigotry is limited to Catholics. Wright's encompasses white people and America in general. Guess what: white people and patriots significantly outnumber Catholics. In fact, most moderate and conservative Catholics ARE patriotic and white, and therefore likely to be at least as offended by Wright as by Hagee.

There will definitely be commercials run putting Obama's praise of Wright right alongside Wright's condemnation of America. You can bet your life on it. Even if McCain doesn't run them, groups supporting him will.

Trooper York said...

Black and white are not the important colors. Green is. Obama will do as he is told, he is a good Chicago machine politician after all is said and done. You super libs are in for a big surprise. Then you might get disgusted and join us in the "reality show based community" and relax and have a beer.

Greg said...

Missing also in the acknowledgment that Obama himself is exposing his own children to this stuff -- and in fact he's bankrolling it with his largest charitable contributions in the tens of thousands of dollars. He was also lending credence to it by sitting in the pews and saying nothing ...

"Missing here, I think, is an explicit acknowledgment that Wright is not merely expressing the anger he feels but that he is leading people into anger, keeping anger fresh and alive .. Obama speaks as if Wright were only expressing his beliefs, and he does not say that Wright was, from his powerful leadership position, instilling these beliefs in many others."

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Rev Wright grew up in the 50's and experienced segregation and this is supposed to give him a right to be a hate monger and preach from his religious pulpit political and racial hatred? Condoleeza Rice and Colin Powell and Thomas Sowell also grew up in the same and even worse circumstances than Rev Wright the difference is that they have grown as individuals, made progress, are greatly admired and have become beacons of hope not just for "blacks" but for all people.

Ann is correct in that Rev. Wright preaching hatred and divisiveness to new generations that have never experienced racism to the degree that people of his generation have. Are there still racist attitudes? You bet and Rev. Wright is also exhibiting those.

BTW: I notice that he is now Obama's FORMER PASTOR. Most likely because he has become a liability in the campaign.

Question: Should Michelle become a bigger liability than she already is, will Obama kick her to the curb and sever a 20 year important relationship just as he has with his close friend and confidant the FORMER Rev. Wright? Opportunist, thy name is Obama.

Also: My husband's deceased grandmother grew up in the segregated South (born in 1886)and was much to lady-ike to use the word Nigger. She used the term Darkies. Different times. We can't judge people by today's rules and that goes for Washington or Jefferson as well as my husband's grandmother.

B said...

Rev said:

People need to face up to the fact that it doesn't matter WHY a person is a racist or a bigot; what matters is that he IS a racist and a bigot. The reasons for the bigotry are an explanation, not an excuse.

No disagreement here. But there is definitely a difference of degree in public vs private response - and there often should be.

After golfing several years ago with my father and his much older brother, we were enjoying lunch at the clubhouse. At one point in a rambling conversation, my uncle said , well at least this was enjoyable because there are no Jews here. I about dropped my sandwich, I was so flabbergasted. My father - a civil rights marcher whom I had seen confront young Marines taunting a black family at a restaurant, with the Marines backing down - put his hand on my knee under the table , as if to say, "leave it alone".

As we left my uncle's hotel, I asked my father why I should ignore the lifetime of example he had given about confronting bigots. "Your uncle is wrong. I've been over that ground with him many times. Some people you are not going to see change, especially if they're old. You have to pick your battles, and this is one I'm letting slide."

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Additionally, where is the IRS regarding Obama's church making political speeches from the pulpit? At the least they should be investigating whether they have crossed the line and if they should lose their tax exempt status.

Hmmmmmm?

that-xmas said...

Really, I can't believe that pastor. I mean, the CIA couldn't have had any involvement with cocaine smuggling in the 80's, starting a drug epidemic that was the scourge of the inner city for years and years.

Oh wait...

Blue Moon said...

Greg:

Is there a church that one could go to where the pastor never says anything controversial? Maybe he should just not go to church. His religion holds that if you do not accept Jesus, you are going to hell. So which is worse, which is more divisive: "America deserved 9/11 because of its foreign policy" or "All you athiests and other non-Christians, are going to hell?"

Zeb Quinn said...

I'm also wondering about the demonization of his supposed n-word spewing white grandmother, who conveniently is now dead and gone. Indeed, all the white people are dead and gone, mother, father, and grandmother.

This'd be the same white grandmother who helped to raise him, who he chose to stay with as a teenager when his mother left again for Indonesia, who sent him to Hawaii's most expensive and prestigious private prep school, and who must've been in some manner instrumental in him developing into a successful applicant to Columbia. And that's not even getting to the fact that this is the same woman who raised the wonderful free spirit, very, very big thinking person his mother turned out to be.

Now she was a bigot.

How does that happen? Something isn't right with this picture.

madawaskan said...

Blue Moon-

Did you know that Reverand wright came up with that 9/11 We DESERVE IT! speech-on-


Sept. 16, 2001

That's what he though this congregation needed to here. Just-

Five days later.

Yep. The Reverend Wright and his applauding congregation had more empathy for the vision and position of the terrorists, than most of the Churches that I know of-

Just five days later.

ModNewt said...

Revenant said ...
The thing about all the talk of "reconciliation" is that white America doesn't have a problem with black people. There's nothing about our behavior that needs to change -- no action that we need to take.

Maybe you don't... don't know you well enough to say. But I've spent plenty of time in places (Mississippi and rural NY, of all places) where white folks do need behavior changes. Plenty of it.

The best example is a wedding of an 18 year old niece of my girlfriend I was invited to. The parents of the bride would not allow her to have a black friend stand in the wedding. And yes, it was because of her skin color.

Blue Moon said...

Zeb:

"I can't be a racist - some of my best friends are black."

I think you can love a black grandchild and still have some racist attitudes. I love my dogs but they're still dogs. I love my wife, but I can be sexist.

Remember the old saying (paraphrased): Southerners hate negroes but love their negro. Northerners love negroes but hate the negro they know.

Titan said...

Pastafarian: "This leaves only two possibilities: Either he doesn't believe that [the statements are] vile, or he wants to subject his children to this."

Hmmm, the only two possibilities? You can't think of any others? Try hard.

Hint: Look for the speech line that starts "But the truth is..."

I have a racist grandfather who spouts off all the time. I take my family to see him. It must be because I'm racist or because I want my family to learn racism.

Drill sgt: I wasn't responding to that; I was responding to your statements about replacing strife with a happyloving melting pot.

I wasn't referring to Atticus at trial; I was referring to Atticus's lesson to Scout:

Don't judge a person before trying to understand them.

To answer the point you thought I was making, I like this story. In Illinois, civil rights groups wanted cameras in interrogation rooms to prevent harsh interrogations. The police didn't want them, and they were worried about lawsuits and oversight. Obama had several meetings with the police, took the time to understand their objections, and then rephrased the cameras plan in a way that addressed the officers objections. Now the cops love it, and they have been telling other states to implement it.

It would have been all too easy to say that the cops "must not want people to see them beating minorities" and demagogue on the issue. Obama didn't do that, and produced a better result.

Blue Moon said...

madawaskan:

And I can find white preachers, who on 9/16/01 said something like:

"And we will turn all of the arab lands into a parking lot. For even the littlest arab will not be spared the wrath of God and the B-52. They all deserve it because they have rejected God."

In fact, I bet I can find more "kill the arab" preachers than "we deserve 9/11" preachers. My point is that if a church has people running it, controversial statements will be made -- and if you decided to change churches everytime it happened, you would be changing churches all the time.

I am not excusing Jeremiah Wright -- I know why Obama went there (another long post). It is just odd to watch conservatives do impersonations of the worst Al Sharpton caricature by taking offense. Is it offensive, no doubt. Should Obama have gone there -- no. But anyone who goes to church is going to an "offensive" church, and before you say "Unitarian" as contrary example, I am offended by them.

rossi said...

Interesting, Ann, that you can post and post about ads you love, the IDOL finals, and things that move you that seem so, well, silly...

Oddly, or perhaps just reflective of today's mood, you dismiss a summary anecdote as saccharine, one whose purpose was to wrap up a very long speech? Was it not pithy enough? Not American Idol liveblogging worthy? I mean I enjoy the pictures of the cats on the hood of your car, and it shows me you have a propensity for the saccharine (or totally inane) yourself. Maybe you're just not in the mood.

I guess I was, because I found the whole thing pretty well played.

This won't change anything for the anti-Obama mental midgets posting on here using the same old hacked up out of context talking points from their choir of fellow angry people. It wasn't designed to.

In my own view, this was a speech designed to reassure those who want to hear again what matters here for their candidate, what the difference between these two fellows are, and what drives their personal experiences and worldview. As I continually argue with an increasingly politically bitter old man of a father, I too find much of what he says repugnant as his intellectual curiosity is limited much like many of the Sean Hannity apologists I enjoy laughing at here. He fills his head with a tune only he can hear.

But there is so much of this man that has made me who I am and of which I am proud. Much like Obama's touch on "we all have nutty preachers", it easily can be expanded to one's own family. And Obama has referred to Wright as family. What people wanted to hear is Obama assurances that his views are not the same. Disown someone? Not necessary. Emphasize where you part ways? Critical. And here, this job was done for me.

Regardless, it puts a very large chink in the armor of those like Sloan and others here who breathlessly wax on about how they were in the army and saw blacks give blood _gasp!_ but want to ignore that these things simply don't give you a pass, much like Rev. Wright's USMC service doesn't forgive his looney sermons. It removes the passed around "Muslim" meme, which can recently be found expounded by these same posters on this blog.

The whole issu will pass, we'll move on, and maybe, just maybe focus on the economy, on the war, on who's best to lead the country through it. Perhaps the MSM will continue to froth over this and do enough damage to Obama in the general. Or maybe McCain will have his moment (I think either of them would make decent leaders, to be honest, regardless of these sideshows e.g. Hagee)

But my vote's still with Obama, and I doubt anyone is going to be shifting from their extreme views based on this speech one way or another.

But Ann it might do you well to re-read the speech in it's entirety as I personally don't think your assertions that he didn't do enough to disown really hold water. Maybe you'll be convinced. Maybe not.

madawaskan said...

Well ya b-

But you are missing perhaps purposefully the larger part of Ann's argument.

It's the poison.

Does he not prosper from the poison?

As soon as he can from the pulpit-he skews the 9/11 event to match his own world view.

It was more about him.

The man is vain-only he can save Obama now and he won't.

Wright is the road that is leading Obama away from fulfilling the dream of Martin Luther Kings.

Or he is the roadblock.

He could come out and admit what Obama has admitted about him in this last speech.

But Wright will not..

Even Obama his prodigy and spiritual son cannot get him to -

Change.

Revenant said...

I mean, the CIA couldn't have had any involvement with cocaine smuggling in the 80's, starting a drug epidemic that was the scourge of the inner city for years and years. Oh wait...

There are still people who believe that conspiracy theory? I thought it died out in the 90s.

madawaskan said...

Blue Moon-

Cripes you're fast I've got to go chase down that quote and then perhaps come back at ya...

Sloanasaurus said...

In fact, I bet I can find more "kill the arab" preachers than "we deserve 9/11" preachers.

Okay. Go find some then.

While your at it find some preachers who preach for white power and who gave David Duke a lifetime achievement award. Then ask yourself if it is okay for the next president to have been a member of that church for 20 years.

madawaskan said...

Blue Moon-

Guess what I can't find it-

"the wrath of god and the b-52" doesn't turn up on the Amercan google search anyways.

Zeb Quinn said...

Blue Moon:

And yeah, that crapping on her grave and memory thingie is bit of a bummer, but hey, it's real handy to not have her around with her version of it and of what life with Barry as teenager was like, too. Right?

madawaskan said...

And then there's always that two wrongs don't make a right thing...

You know.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

My point is that if a church has people running it, controversial statements will be made -- and if you decided to change churches every time it happened, you would be changing churches all the time.

That's not the point. If you are planning to run for President of the entire United States and represent your country and ALL the people in it fairly and vigourosly to the rest of the world.....you don't attend a divisive, racist, hate America church.

Whether it is a African American church, an Islamic Mosque, a Jewish Synagogue, a Catholic Cathedral or any other denomination that has a religious leader that is spewing hatred and selling videos of himself doing so to make money, it is wrong and should immediately disqualify that person from running for President of the United States.

We aren't choosing a Prom King here and it shouldn't be a popularity contest or who can give the slickest speech. We are choosing a leader of our country who is "supposed" to represent all of the various groups that comprise the USA.

Obama has shown by his decades long affiliation with such a radical hate mongering church leader that he is unfit to be elected.

From Inwood said...

Scrappleface gets it spot on in two witty posts:

"Obama: Racial Unity Can Overcome Capitalism"

&

"Obama Ends Bid to Become 1st Black President"

Richard Dolan said...

The point of the speech was political -- to kill off any possibility of Obama's being pigeon-holed as the candidate of black resentments, and more generally to change the focus of attention away from race-specific grievances (real or fancied) and return to his preferred (if vaporous) theme of Hope-and-Change! Since that was its point, it makes sense to judge the speech in those terms. I think he was only partly successful.

Putting aside the mustard-and-relish sandwiches and the health care/foreclosures and other class based stuff that was merely filler here, his basic idea was that, to get based race as a negative theme (he is quite happy to keep it as a subtext for the Hope-and-Change! theme), he tried to address it and the Rev. Wright with a bit more candor than he did in the past. (People will notice the lack of candor up to now.) In that vein, he said that Rev. Wright is not particularly unusal, nor is he regarded as a kook, in the black community -- instead Rev. Wright gives voice to the deep-seated anger in the black community, which (Obama suggests) is a reaction to the still-present reality of discrimination along with the continuing effects of past discrimination. Obama acknowledges that he could no more disavow Rev. Wright, or the anger to which he gives voice, than he could the black community -- it is part of who Obama is.

Obama tried to soften that a bit by suggesting that Rev. Wright was like the recent immigrants who resent special treatment for blacks. The basic problem with that frame is that, while Obama offers his understanding of the resentment he says recent immigrants may feel, he doesn't propose to do anything to change the cause of their feelings of resentment. It was, really, a Clintonian "I feel your pain" moment, but (but also like Clinton) had no follow-through. His treatment of the anger in the black community was quite different.

The political point was to regain control of the still-forming image of Obama for many voters. Despite all the hoopla in the Dem primary, I think many voters still have only the haziest image of who Obama is, what he stands for and why he wants to be President. Up to now, Obama's strategy was to stay above the fray, never get angry, never accept being pigeon-holed as the "black" candidate (except for the Hope-and-Change! angle) -- in short, to be a wise, warm and conforting guide to a post-racial paradise. That strategy took a major hit today. Obama's defense to the Rev. Wright story was to embrace, to an extent, the anger that Obama says is the explanation for Wright's rants -- Obama has internalized the anger, it has become part of who he is (even if it was not really part of his personal biography) and it will necessarily impact on how he would govern if elected, even as Obama rejects completely the particulars of Rev. Wright's anti-American and anti-Israel ravings.

But having raised the subject, and tried to cast it in his terms, Obama will have to deal with it for the rest of the election cycle. It's not going away as a subject, and Obama's speech essentially invites scrutiny about how his internalizing the "anger in the black community" will impact on an Obama administration. That's not a good development for the Obama campaign.

Pastor_Jeff said...

Rev. Wright is free to preach what he wants, but he's not preaching the gospel.

The gospel is that Jesus Christ has come to reconcile enemies through His blood, and make one new people out of all who come to Him. "Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all" (Col. 3:11)

Rev. Wright is not preaching Jesus Christ, but fear, anger, grievance, and identity politics.

If you're preaching in way that makes it difficult (if not impossible) for people of another race to attend church, you're not preaching the gospel.

Rev. Wright has built a church whose identity is its race, not Jesus Christ.

And it's sad that so many people buy what he's selling because they become enslaved all over again to hatred and bitterness.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Reverend, your 11:49 post was spot on. Very well said.

bearbee said...

It's that those Americans who differ with us are not our enemies. Therefore, we should take the time to learn why they differ. To find common ground, and to work together where we can.

He has been in politics for several years and he has been stumping for over a year. So, when d'ya suppose he will start to do that?

He needs to follow this up with lots and lots of stops in white middle PA -- talk to the blue hairs......

Along the way he just might want to atop and make his speech at 400 West 95th Street, Chicago, Illinois 60628

ron st.amant said...

Did you know that Reverand wright came up with that 9/11 We DESERVE IT! speech-on-
Sept. 16, 2001


As did Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell.

The point is that there are loathesome wingnuts of all political stripes.

Condemning Obama for Wright is the same as condemning McCain for associating with Robertson and Hagee and Falwell.

None of it, not their words, nor the ridiculous rhetoric of anti-Obama people or anti-McCain people solves anything.

What the Wright's and Sharpton's of the world reflect is a generation that suffered and is still angry, and their anger blinds them to the possibilities of change. Just as there are millions of whites of the similar generation who can't seem to grasp that anger, come to terms with the state of black American, and are thus blinf to the possibilites of change.

What Obama and a younger generation of whites and blacks represent, hopefully, is the full embrace of possibility without the wounds of open racism.

Slavery was a cancer.
The racism that followed its removal was an open wound that festered for generations.
As these generations have passed the wound continues to heal, but the scars will long remain.

They no longer need to threaten the life of this Republic, but from time to time we must look to those scars, remember what they stand for, why we have them, rededicate ourselves to making America better for all.

There are miles of work to be done, in the hearts and minds of the Wrights and Robertsons of the world, and in the generations of people to come. Their failures are our chance to improve, our lessons to learn, their wrongs we must right, their ignorance we much educate.

RickLinATL said...

I think blacks find their churches and sermons cathartic. And if I were a black person living in this country, I would damn well need some catharsis. But nothing is private anymore, if it ever was; YouTube has seen to that. And so we rightly demand of Obama an answer to this question: you were in the sanctuary with this man, but did you inhale?

Revenant said...

My point is that if a church has people running it, controversial statements will be made -- and if you decided to change churches every time it happened, you would be changing churches all the time.

I'm sorry, but that's crap. I may be an atheist, but I was raised as an Christian and dragged to church on a regular basis. Trust me, after a while I was *trying* to find fault with our pastor. But the most controversial thing he ever did in the fifteen years I attended that church was criticize the emphasis on Santa Claus during the Christmas season.

Maybe a lot of churches get political. But people attend those churches because they LIKE the pastor getting political.

Superdad said...

The problem with this that we are letting the Obama camp make the asinine statements of Mr. Wright into a race issue. This is not a race issue. Rev. Wright is just Ward Churchill in a dashiki. The fact that he is black is really not relevant to this issue at all.

Another problem is that Obama's statement is simply not at all believable. He new this man for 20 years and never ever ever heard him say anything like this? I call bs.

Lastly, Obama's alibi for not hearing one particular sermon is just as bad as if he was present. He claims to have missed one of Wright's wonderful rants because he was giving a speech at a La Raza convention. That is like proving you were not at a Klan rally by proving you were at a skin-head convention.

But I guess I should just go back to my lab and keep working on the next epidemic we are cooking up to try to kill all the black people.

Revenant said...

As did Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell.

Yes, and conservatives slammed them hard, repeatedly, and publicly for doing it.

Condemning Obama for Wright is the same as condemning McCain for associating with Robertson and Hagee and Falwell.

Oh? Which one of those three is McCain's pastor?

BZ said...

I am disgusted this charlatan is a candidate. Are we past the point of finding fully functional adults to be Democratic candidates? I never thought someone could make Hillary look good by comparison. Obama is a snake.

Dr. Ellen said...

that-xmas said...

Really, I can't believe that pastor. I mean, the CIA couldn't have had any involvement with cocaine smuggling in the 80's, starting a drug epidemic that was the scourge of the inner city for years and years.

Oh wait...


Oh, for Pete's sake. Weren't you there for the Sixties? Weren't you there for Reefer Madness? I really do not think any drug epidemics started in the Eighties.

Michael_H said...

Pastor Jeff - Thank you, thank you, thank you.

AJ Lynch said...

It is kinda shame. Though I had concerns about Michele Obama's statements, until last week, I found Obama to be an acceptable presidential alternative if he beats McCain.

Now, I believe he would be more like the many big city Dem mayors who have been dismal failures in office.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Putting aside the mustard-and-relish sandwiches

Actually it was this where my eyes simply rolled back in my head. Mustard and relish cause they were the cheapest? Now that is the biggest load of crap I ever heard. PB&J's are pretty damn cheap and a helluva lot more nutrious than mustard and relish.

Ok so mom had cancer, lost her job and her health insurance and then after a year of Ashley surviving only on mustard and relish sandwiches mom got better. Mom had cancer and then got better with no health insurance? Was it a Christmas Miracle? Am I the only one who thinks that story smells worse than a mustard and relish sandwhich?

Titan said...

Superdad: "Another problem is that Obama's statement is simply not at all believable. He new this man for 20 years and never ever ever heard him say anything like this? I call bs."

Superdad, why don't you go read the speech then get back to us...

"For some, nagging questions remain. Did I know him to be an occasionally fierce critic of American domestic and foreign policy? Of course. Did I ever hear him make remarks that could be considered controversial while I sat in church? Yes. Did I strongly disagree with many of his political views? Absolutely – just as I’m sure many of you have heard remarks from your pastors, priests, or rabbis with which you strongly disagreed."

Middle Class Guy said...

It's about replacing hate with disagreement, not replacing hate with love.


When the left stops hating, the right will start disagreeing with them.

To the drill sgt:
"There are no Black men my United States Army. I am not a Black man. There are no White men in the United States Army. There are no Red men or Yellow men in the United States Army. There are men in the United States Army. These men only have one color; Green. That, men, is the only color in the United States Army. If you do not like it, then you can leave my United States Army."

The speech of my Drill Sergeant, still ingrained in my head after all these years.

K T Cat said...

Nothing he said was going to convince me. Don Imus lost a multimillion dollar gig because of a throwaway snark that was orders of magnitude less noxious than half the things we see from Rev. Wright. Imus had to grovel like a dog and then he was fired.

Obama does far worse, gives a cute speech and everyone loves him.

Tim said...

"Condemning Obama for Wright is the same as condemning McCain for associating with Robertson and Hagee and Falwell."

BULLSHIT.

McCain never attended any of those churches - Obama attend, was married, had his children baptized, and donated tens of thousands of dollars over his 20-year affiliation with the Reverend Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr.'s church.

Only a moron would think there was the slightest comparison between McCain and Obama on this point.

Sloanasaurus said...

Condemning Obama for Wright is the same as condemning McCain for associating with Robertson and Hagee and Falwell.

You make an interesting comparison with Obama-Wright vs. McCain-Robertson et al. The truth is McCain has a long track record of dissing the religious right such as calling Pat Robertson and Jerry Fawell agents of intolerance. In contrast, Obama embraces liberation theology.

Revenant said...

Superdad, why don't you go read the speech then get back to us...

I think Superdad was referring to the lies Obama was telling *prior* to giving this speech. You know -- the stuff about how he never heard the controversial sermons?

Anthony said...

"Did I strongly disagree with many of his political views? Absolutely – just as I’m sure many of you have heard remarks from your pastors, priests, or rabbis with which you strongly disagreed."

Yeah, I often go to Mass on Sunday and hear my priest say things like "Those dirty negro devils are here to take our women!" He's just expressing the historical difficulties that Catholics have had with Protestants, that's all. Merely "challenging" statements. I can still sit and listen to it though, because he's a swell guy.

The speech will provide cover for apologists and the media to wave it all off as old news now. That's really what it was all about.

TMink said...

A great philosopher once wrote:

"I don't want nobody
To give me nothing
Open up the door
I'll get it myself

Don't give me denegration
Give me true communication
Don't give me sorrow
I want equal opportunity
To live tomorrow

Give me schools
And give me better books
So I can read about myself
And gain my truly looks

Some of us try
As hard as we can
We don't want no sympathy
We just wanna be a man

We got talents we can use
On our side of town
Let's get our heads together
And get it up from the ground

When some of us make money
People hear about our people

Got to get myself together
So many things I've got to do
So many things I've got to do
I don't no help from you
Tell everybody, body else
All of these things, baby
I'll do it myself

I'm not gonna tell
You what to do
I'm not gonna raise a fuss
But before you make another move
Let's start by taking care of us

Kids get that education
And don't you take no more
Cause we gonna get
This thing together
You got to carry the bell

I don't want nobody
To give me nothing
Open up the door"

He was such a genius, that you could actually dance while you had your consciousness raised.

The personal responsibility advocated by Dr. King, Marcus Garvey, Booker T. Washington, George Carver, all there. It is brilliant, and is called hate speech when a white man says the same thing.

Trey

Sloanasaurus said...

Absolutely – just as I’m sure many of you have heard remarks from your pastors, priests, or rabbis with which you strongly disagreed."

This is different than a 20-year record of anti-americanism. How can Obama remain in a church just merely "disagreeing" to this and then say he wants to be president - defender of America????

Sloanasaurus said...

You know -- the stuff about how he never heard the controversial sermons?

Apparently Obama was conveniently absent for the controversial speeches, but he still knows the whole man (Mr. Wright).

Titan said...

Revenant: "I think Superdad was referring to the lies Obama was telling *prior* to giving this speech. You know -- the stuff about how he never heard the controversial sermons?"

I think you mean the comment "I was not there when he made that comment" referring to the youtube god damn America clip. Obama never said, "He's never said anything remotely like that except for the days that I missed church."

madawaskan said...

ron st. amant

Oh this is good...

Do you know I'm sorta frenchie-canuck/

Anyways

Merde de la vache baby!

Hagee Falwell et al aren't someone that McCain wrote large parts of his book about.

You know-

Faith of my Fathers-

Falwell ain't old enough to be McCain's pappy.

And, you know something else?

Today in his speech Obama finally admitted that he had heard some of Wright's more controversial comments-

Can you imagine McCain being in the front row during that-

9/11 We Deserved It speech? Five days later!?

Sometimes having a temper can be a good thing.

Personally I would have dropped- kicked Wright's testicles towards the Tabernacle.

But then that's how I roll-as a Black Irish, French Canadian Croat Chick.

I've been known to start riots at Village Inn Pancake Houses.

Beat your kid in front of me and you're gettin' your ass kicked.

I'm just sayin'...

Titan said...

Sloanasaurus: "How can Obama remain in a church just merely "disagreeing" to this?"

Again, read the speech. He explained clearly why he did not move churches.

Maybe you disagree with these reasons, but your question makes it sound like you never heard them.

Blue Moon said...

Revenant:

Your pastor never said that Jesus was the only way to heaven? He never discussed the biblical grounds for divorce? He never discussed not giving pearls to swine or shaking the dust off your feet as a testimony against non-believers? How can a christian govern a nation he believes contains millions of people destined for hell?

Obama should have voted with his feet. Personally, I hate liberation theology because it is too much Che and not enough Jesus. As someone on another site put it -- liberation theology is a marxist dog wagging a Jesus tail.

The comparison with McCain and those preachers is somewhat off. But, how can McCain rely on his 8 year old opposition to Falwell and then turn around and seek guys like Falwell and Hagee. The difference I see is that McCain hanging out with Hagee is purely political and Obama's relationship with Wright was personal, spiritual and political. I do not believe in relativism -- wrong is wrong and in this case Obama was wrong. I wonder when McCain will say he is wrong in seeking out Hagee et al.

Sweating Through fog said...

I had trouble with Wight's anger too when I first saw the clips. But I've been changing my mind. I found a link to a longer sermon which I placed on my blog. My feelings are more mixed now.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Heh.. I just heard a clip of Rev, Wright claiming that the government knew the Japanese were going to bomb Pearl Harbor.

I'm betting there's a sermon that the moon landing was faked.

You know, maybe its just a Catholic thing but when my priest gives a sermon generally it has something to do with the Gospel reading he just finished.

Blue Moon said...

Sloan:

Black pissed off about the way they have been treated in their lives are un-american. True or false?

Michael said...

titan, who thought the speech was great, wrote:

"He pretty much stated that his white grandmother used to use the word "Nigger". I wonder how that felt to a small mixed child? "

I didn't read the speech in any detail, but I think he's implied this in the past as well. Think about this suggestion from BHO. Saying that a white person used the n word is today a very toxic charge, certainly not a credit to their memory. His grandparents and his mother are all dead, so there's no one to defend their memory or honor, except maybe BHO himself.

I believe his white grandparents raised him from the age of 10 or so, when his mother sent him back to Hawaii from Indonesia. So these grandparents must have done something for him, since there weren't any other adults taking care of him then. And he didn't get cast aside, either.

Attributing racial slurs to those grandparents (in books, and on national TV) is an odd way to repay what they did for him, especially when its done in order to advance his own political career.

I had a friend who was half jewish, mostly raised by his New England Protestant mother after the parents divorced, and who spent many summers and some full years with his maternal grandfather. I always heard what a great old man this grandfather was, and once had the privilege of meeting the old guy. We got along fine. Later I heard i was one of the few jews the old man didn't dislike. The old guy didn't care for us too much, and I'm sure my friend heard all about this growing up. But he only had good things to say about his grandfather, and was grateful for what had been done for him.

What does this say about BHO? Is he grateful for what we can assume his grandmother must have done for him? Does he praise her memory, or does he hold her up to a national audience as an example of what was wrong with America?

And it is fair to ask this questions, because it was BHO who brought up the issue of his grandmother's alleged racism when it seemed convenient as a counter weight to Rev. Wright's racial hatreds.

Anyway, I think we all know the answer to this question.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

You know, maybe its just a Catholic thing but when my priest gives a sermon generally it has something to do with the Gospel reading he just finished.

Yes, and every other Sunday the sermon is given in Spanish for fairness sake since its a 50/50 mix in our church. (I miss Latin mass). Since I speak Spanish too, I'm really quite sure the Priest isn't spouting hatred against us Gringos sitting in the pews next to the Hispanics.

SGT Ted said...

Yea, I like that the CIA forced teh unsuspecting negros to smoke crack. It wasn't Teh Negro's that wanted to smoked it. The Man made them smoke it.

Somehow, they got the formula JUUUUUST RIGHT so that only Teh Negros would smoke it. Not Teh Honkeys. Nope nuh-uh. Great formula.

Whitey is very clever that way.

DO you libs gather just how stupid you look when you entertain this kook stuff?

Trooper York said...

This Sunday's sermon was about the bishops appeal so we could collect a lot of money to send over to countries where everyone hates us but loves our money

Titan said...

Michael: "What does this say about BHO? Is he grateful for what we can assume his grandmother must have done for him? Does he praise her memory, or does he hold her up to a national audience as an example of what was wrong with America?" ...

"Anyway, I think we all know the answer to this question."

Yes, we certainly do. Those who listened to the speech heard him praise his grandmother repeatedly, as he has done many many times before. He is clearly grateful for her work.

In the speech, he mentioned epithets by his grandmother as a way of illustrating that no one is perfect. A woman, whom he loves, would sometimes say hurtful things.

His point was that areas of bad do not eliminate areas of good. It is possible to still love your grandmother (and me my racist grandfather) without endorsing the bad things they do.

But you probably think that I hate my grandfather, since I just mentioned that he's racist. Please.

Trooper York said...

Also ten minutes on how much the cost of palms has increased. Can't forget that.

Bubba McCarroll said...

titusgrandjetewithalaybackintothesplits said...
Let me guess wingnuts will hate it and moonbats will love it-there's a surprise.

Bitch, I was just reading back on some of the postings and saw you at a dream about me. I am not very tall. About 5'10. As far as being funny looking-how cruel-I am not funny looking. I don't look like Lurch.

Maybe you have even seen me before but didn't even realize it. I could of been in some cafe in Brooklyn when you were there or at your meet up in Madison during Christmas 2007 in the snow storm. Just being a fly on the wall.

11:25 AM

"Could of?" That displays your ignorance from jump.

madawaskan said...

Blue Moon-

I don't know too many atheists bothered by what others believe in-because they don't believe it.

If that makes sense.

But you are saying that you are an atheist and it bothers you?

Hmm-I'm telling you that you would be the first I know of to express that sentiment.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Black pissed off about the way they have been treated in their lives are un-american. True or false?

Only if they act un-american and promote actions against their country. They have a right to be pissed. They don't have a right to be racists and spoon feed their children hatred any more than the KKK has a right to burn crosses in people's yards.

I'm pissed off about the way that women have been treated in this country for many generations before mine. Does this give me the right to call you hateful names and encourage women to do violent acts against you? You haven't been oppressing me....or....have you? But, I'll bet your Father or Grandfather did so. Therefore..... I demand reparations and want you to grovel before me!!! Evil MAN!!

Trooper York said...

Why couldn't they be waving bagels at Jesus when he was riding into town on that donkey. That would be cool. I guess I just like St Anthony's day a lot better. But then I am a fool for baked goods.

Andrew said...

Fail.
Barack needs more than a 'Sister Souljah' moment. He needed to do to Wright what Ben-Gurion did to the Altelana.

You don't work with people who are damning you. Maybe therapists do, maybe marriage counselors do, but not candidates for President.
Oh, they're not damning him, just us white people? Well, then he's separated himself from us. Fail.

Paul Zrimsek said...

he distinguished himself from Wright not in hiding his anger, but in believing we can change the things that cause the anger.

Digging up FDR and having him un-engineer Pearl Harbor is going to be a toughie.

ricpic said...

Whites don't hate Blacks, Whites fear Blacks,
And with good reason, too;
Whites who've not known Black attacks
Are very, very, few.

UWS guy said...

My brother, a fellow in the navy, said that before joining, all his black friends neither new nor liked white people (their grandmothers told them they were pretty much devils).

Now of course, thanks to mixed military service, black and white service men are a shining example of Americans trancending race.

But all those grandmothers still exist, and all those black pastors as well. To say that Barry cannot become president because of these righteously angry old black people he's associated with means that a black man will only become president once he's spotlessly "white" and a member some very solemn and cornbread Episcopalian church.

"A black man will become president once they 'get over' slavery and segregation and stop being so 'angry'" That's all I hear from revenent and so many other cluelessly white posters.

kimsch said...

Hoosier,

I'm with you on the mustard and relish sandwich story. Generic mac and cheese is probably cheaper and more nutritious as well.

The biggest expense for these people was food? That one is hard to believe as well.

What about free and reduced lunches and breakfasts at school? Medicaid? Food Stamps? Other welfare? If they really had no job and no money wouldn't some of that have come into play? What about family? What about their church?

All this was only 14 years ago if you believe Barry's story.

Too many questions on the veracity of that particular story. I can't find anything on google showing that anyone's even looked into the story and he told it on MLK day, lots of people reported the speech and noted the story, but no one investigated the story itself.

Revenant said...

Your pastor never said that Jesus was the only way to heaven?

What the heck kind of weird-ass Christian considers THAT controversial?

He never discussed the biblical grounds for divorce? He never discussed not giving pearls to swine or shaking the dust off your feet as a testimony against non-believers?

Not that I remember. Doesn't sound like something he would have done, either.

How can a christian govern a nation he believes contains millions of people destined for hell?

Whether or not a person is going to hell when they die has no bearing on how Christians are supposed to treat them.

The comparison with McCain and those preachers is somewhat off. But, how can McCain rely on his 8 year old opposition to Falwell and then turn around and seek guys like Falwell and Hagee.

Tu quoque only gets you so far. Let's assume, for the sake of argument, that both Obama and McCain get cozy with bigots. Well, the problem there is that Obama's one and ONLY qualification has been his supposed status as a different sort of politician. If he's willing to get friendly with whomever it takes to get elected then he's just another sleazy politician same as all the others out there -- which means he hasn't got any qualifications at all.

But even then I think there's a significant difference between McCain and Obama. McCain was openly hostile to the Robertson/Falwell wing of the party for years. He started making some conciliatory moves towards them in the last year or two in order to secure political support. In contrast, Obama has spent most of the last 20 years getting cozy with the lunatic fringe of black liberation theology, and only started *rejecting* it in order to secure political support from the white majority. In other words, when there's nobody watching them McCain shuns the asshole preachers and Obama invites them over to his house for dinner.

I wonder when McCain will say he is wrong in seeking out Hagee et al.

I'm guessing "never". But Hagee's nowhere near as bad as Wright anyway.

Michael said...

To Titan, to judge from comments I have heard personally over the last few months, I think the main impression BHO has given the public about his grandmother is the one you cited, that she used the N word. That is the legacy he has given her and his grandfather in the public eye.

As for your own grandfather, why would I think you hate him? I didn't say BHO hates his grandmother. In any debate, a wise person confines their replies to things actually said or clearly implied, not telling their opponents what they "probably" think.

Just as Bill Clinton will always be fondly remembered for "the meaning of the word "is" ", I think BHO has established his grandmother in public memory as a person who used the N word, even though it was so painful for her poor mixed race grandson to hear it.

Only time will tell though.

Revenant said...

To say that Barry cannot become president because of these righteously angry old black people he's associated with means that a black man will only become president once he's spotlessly "white" and a member some very solemn and cornbread Episcopalian church.

And what's wrong with that? Being black doesn't give someone a natural right to be President. You need to represent America, which is largely "white" and "cornbread".

If it is nigh-impossible for a black guy to avoid being cozy with racists in this day and age then oh well, tough cookies for the would-be black Presidents. But as a white guy there's no way in hell I'm voting for someone who seeks out and befriends anti-white racists.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Black pissed off about the way they have been treated in their lives are un-american. True or false?

Well I guess it depends on how you deal with it. I think going through your whole life being pissed off at your country certainly isn't healthy. Just as an FYI, blacks aren't the only people who've been screwed over. Fact is, despite generations of racism, blacks have overcome and have succeeded in large part in this nation. Obama is a case in point. Here a black man is poised to be the first black President of the US which his pastor refers to as the US of KKKA. Well if that was truly the case, he'd still be sitting in the back of a bus wouldn't he?

I think that is what many people find offensive is the fact that Obama has a tremendous amount of white support and then we're subjected to listening to his pastor's hate filled rant on how racist white America is. Maybe in 1965 that would float but in 2008 it simply doesn't pass the smell test anymore.

And yes Obama, if I had a family member who held such hate filled views, I'd disown them in a heartbeat.

Michael_H said...

Here's a condensed version of Barack Obama's speech:

Slavery was present in American in 1787 when the Constitution was signed. It has taken a long time to overcome slavery and its remnants, but I am able to stand before you in 2008 as a man with a black father and a white mother and I am running for the most powerful office in the world.

People in all parts of America seem to like me and have given me their votes in such quantity that I will be my party’s nominee for our county’s highest office.

I am a member of a church whose pastor, Rev. Wright, has said from the pulpit some controversial things not found in the Gospel. His comments have been not only wrong but divisive, and because they are being played and re-played in the media I must now comment and distance myself from what Rev. Wright said, but we’ll remain friends.

I actually like the guy. I’ve known him for 20 years, he introduced me to Christianity, officiated at my wedding and baptized my children. He’s controversial, but at least he never pissed me off like Grandma did when she called me ni**er.

Rev. Wright reminds us during his sermons of the difficult time black people have faced in America. That’s why his congregation has so many members, many of whom remain very angry about things that were done to their ancestors in this country.

I have met some white people who are also angry at big business, at bussing, and at preferential treatment given to black people. They say bad things about blacks in private and they voted for Ronald Reagan. They shouldn’t be mad at black people; they should be mad about questionable accounting practices, greed and lobbyists.

We’re stuck in a racial stalemate and I’m pretty sure that my election won’t change it one bit, although I do believe that one way we can all try to make progress would be for everyone to vote for me.

I’ve run out of things to say, so I’ll wrap it up with a story about a young white woman and an old black man.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

To say that Barry cannot become president because of these righteously angry old black people he's associated with means that a black man will only become president once he's spotlessly "white" and a member some very solemn and cornbread Episcopalian church.

Once again you entirely miss the point or are purposely missing the point.

Obama has never disassociated himself with these racist statements. No one is asking him to give up his identity, unless his identity IS a racist bigot. But then, how can we know since he seems to morph into something else at every new turn in the road.

It also isn't as if Obama has been segregated and didn't know, work with, fund raise with and other wise associate with people other than those represented by his Rev. Wright. Supposedly, Obama's claim to fame is his multicultural upbringing, yet he chooses as an adult to affiliate himself with the worst race hate mongering that the African American community has to offer.

Poor judgement from someone who desires to be President.

Henry said...

Well, I'm late to this comment thread, but here's my take.

Impressive speech, but there's a hole in the center. Obama plays the racism of several people off each other: Wright, Ferraro, his Grandmother.

But where, in Obama's exposition on the sins of others, is his own confession?

If you're going to throw your grandmother and your pastor under the bus, can't you admit at least a failing or two of your own?

I guess when you're the one you've been waiting for, failings don't exist.

Brian said...

He'll disown Reverend Wright as soon as he gets hit hard in the latest polls.

carly said...

It seems like--at some point during those 20 years Obama was being inspired, learning from/relying on Jeremiah Wright--he might have done some of that "healing" he's claiming he'll be able to do as POTUS. If his TRUE goal is to "unify" and get our country to "transcend" race, he should have done SOMETHING right there in his own church.

I'd say: nice speech, but empty, just like the rest of the Obama campaign. Go heal your pastor--and all those folks who stood and cheered his anti-semitic, anti-American, racist HATE speech. When you make some headway with them, come back and try this Pres thing again....

Simon said...

Obama said:
"Segregated schools were, and are, inferior schools; we still haven’t fixed them, fifty years after Brown v. Board of Education"

Excuse me? Point to a school in America that is segregated today.

slim said...

My take on Obama on Rev. Wright is "I pretty much agree with what he said, but not how he said it."

titusgrandjetewithalaybackintothesplits said...

I thought it was great.

You link to K Lo?

She is the most depressing figure in the conservative arena and you link to her?

Her life revolves arounnd listening to talk radio and living in Chelsea among all the gay men she hates.

Beth said...

We can't judge people by today's rules and that goes for Washington or Jefferson as well as my husband's grandmother.

The abolition movement was already in full swing. Washington and Jefferson weren't ignorant to slavery's evils; they chose the benefits of owning free labor over what they knew, or certainly had the opportunity to know, was right. There was, at the time, robust argument against slavery, in the Americas and Europe, just as the public arguments for women's rights, including the vote, were already in public discussion. We can certainly judge them for the decisions they made about the status of blacks, and of women, in forming the country. Acknowledging the flaws of the founders doesn't mean we don't likewise acknowledge their greatness. It's all part of their legacy.

MadisonMan said...

Why is it controversial or surprising that a Kansas woman born in 1922 used the word nigger in describing a black?

Titan said...

Simon: "Excuse me? Point to a school in America that is segregated today."

OK, the school system I went to had a "white" school and a "black" school. Not officially, of course, but actually. It's just how the lines were drawn. They were (I'm not kidding) separated by railroad tracks. The black kids lived on the other side of the tracks.

slim: My take on Obama on Rev. Wright is "I pretty much agree with what he said, but not how he said it."

Obama ~ "we’ve heard my former pastor, Reverend Jeremiah Wright, use incendiary language to express views that have the potential not only to widen the racial divide, but views that denigrate both the greatness and the goodness of our nation; that rightly offend white and black alike.

I have already condemned, in unequivocal terms, the statements of Reverend Wright that have caused such controversy. ... Did I strongly disagree with many of his political views? Absolutely

But the remarks that have caused this recent firestorm weren’t simply controversial. They weren’t simply a religious leader’s effort to speak out against perceived injustice. Instead, they expressed a profoundly distorted view of this country ...

As such, Reverend Wright’s comments were not only wrong but divisive"


Yeah, you're right, I see no difference between your version and the real version.

The Drill SGT said...

Excuse me? Point to a school in America that is segregated today.

Simon,I assume you mean "segregated, as a matter of law"

as opposed to the defacto racial imbalance found in more than several schools cross the country.

housing patterns do yield racially imbalanced schools, though not legally segregated.

Arguably however, the funding for those schools is as good as any anywhere.

In DC, we spend more per student than most all states and have the worst results.

Findings from Public Education Finances: 2005, show that New York spent $14,119 per student — the highest amount among states and state equivalents. Just behind was neighboring New Jersey at $13,800, the District of Columbia at $12,979, Vermont ($11,835) and Connecticut ($11,572). Seven of the top 10 with the highest per pupil expenditures were in the Northeast.

Mortimer Brezny said...

Missing here, I think, is an explicit acknowledgment that Wright is not merely expressing the anger he feels but that he is leading people into anger, keeping anger fresh and alive.

Again, Obama speaks as if Wright were only expressing his beliefs, and he does not say that Wright was, from his powerful leadership position, instilling these beliefs in many others.


How dumb are black parishioners supposed to be? I imagine the only people persuaded by Wright's most inflammatory charges are those willfully receptive to them, and that's why they came to that church. I imagine that many parishioners ignore his inflammatory charges if they disagree and simply appreciate the rest of his sermon. I also imagine that suspending disbelief while watching Jurassic Park doesn't mean you walk out of the theater believing there is an actual island with dinosaurs roaming an amusement park. It is rather easy to listen to a sermon and get pumped up and then go home and forget about it. If Christians mindlessly obeyed every sermon they heard, there wouldn't be any sin or misbehavior in the world. So Wright is just expressing his beliefs; it's up to others to decide how to consider them, or whether to accept them. Unless you assume the attendants of this church cannot think for themselves, there is no necessary leading of, or instilling beliefs into, anyone.

Mortimer Brezny said...

This thread has convinced me; black people are just so goddamn lucky that if they don't like this country they should just go back to Africa, otherwise they should shut up with their whining and move to the back of the bus.

paul a'barge said...

George said:
You want to see the beef?

I will show you the whole cow...
...(bunch of ancient history rant deleted)...
he chickens they are home and roosting.

And that's no bull, baby.


bring it on, baby. Bring. It. On.

We make up 90% of the population and if you want to do some chicken roosting, we'll just see how long they roost after the Tolerance Train leaves the station.

Revenant said...

The abolition movement was already in full swing.

The abolition movement was NEVER "in full swing" in Virginia. Washington and Jefferson lived their whole lives in slave country, don't forget.

Washington and Jefferson weren't ignorant to slavery's evils; they chose the benefits of owning free labor over what they knew, or certainly had the opportunity to know, was right.

The truth was a lot more complicated than that. The Wikipedia article on George Washington and slavery gives a good overview of Washington's position. Jefferson, on the other hand, couldn't sell his slaves because he had used them as collateral for loans.

It seems very likely that Washington would have freed his slaves during his lifetime if he had been able to; I suspect that Jefferson would have as well.

Cedarford said...

ZPS - But I also know that "god damn America" won't play well with most context-challenged Americans.

Exactly. Most Americans not being Lefties, or ACLU Jews with communist parents, we utterly miss the complex nuances of such talk!

Remember, patriotism is just being "context-challenged"

***************
The thing I keep coming to is Jeremiah Wright was a top Marine who was Valedictorian of his Medic class (Marine medic is one of the most dangerous and challenging jobs in the military - that is the guy that charges out on the battlefield with bullets whizzing and shells detonating to risk one's ass for any in dire need.) He was also an excellent theological and english student, with grad degrees in both.

But the real story is not Wright the individual perverting the S Chicago "innocent vessels" with his speeches - but the hard anti-white attitudes of his flock and the NOI a huge presence literally next door - causing the preacher to alter his message to gain a large following and credibility.

If Jeremiah Wright had left the Marines and set up shop elsewhere, like in a town where the United Church of CHrist ministered to mostly whites or African & Latin immigrants, I believe Wright would have come with an entirely different message. Just as Mike Huckabee would have if he was preaching to upscale white Seattle residents instead of downscale Little Rock residents.

But Wright left the egalitarianism of the Marines (technically he was Navy as all Marine medics, even convert Marines are carried as Navy Corpsman) and went into a 1968sea of black separatism & radicalism and the people that still smelled of the smoke from the fires they set in the riots. HE was transformed, not his audience - and the haters, the black elite of Chicago (all hardcore class and race struggle Lefties in the Dem Party), and white radicals at nearby U of Chicago eagerly enabled him and gave him nothing but "attaboys" for 40 years. Including accolades and recognition from Michelle and Barack Obama.

Wright isn't THE problem. He swiftly found what his angry black audience WANTED to hear, what "Firebrand" polyical activism they wanted their preacher to spout, and he delivered and was well-rewarded by them.

Remember every controversial utterance of Wright shown on videotape was accompanied by shots of hundreds of excited, enthusiastic racist blacks standing up whooping and hollering
in approval for what he said.

One can easily imagine a video emerging of Michelle Obama jumping up and down pumping a clenched fist yelling "You go, Rev Wright!!" while Barack remains seated, smiling wryly at the bigotry on display - but not walking out of course.
**************
Revenent - "Of course, McCain can't use Wright against Obama".

Why not? What's it going to do, offend black voters? Come on, with a black Democrat on the ticket it is already safe bet the McCain will get the lowest percentage of the black vote of any Republican President in history.


A point lost on many reactive Republicans who conclude that if Obama is on the ticket, THEY MUST also play "clever" Identity Politics and have Alan Keyes or Bush's "Mr. Smithers", Condi Rice, on the ticket to hold the black vote down to 96% going to Obama instead of 98%.

Republicans can win if they show they have very qualified candidates ready to fix problems overseas and with the economy...even if they are just mere white males. Identity politics are a stupid cancer, best left to "entitled to office by skin color" blacks of the Democrat Party warring with "entiled to office by lack of a penis, and gay too!" Dem Feminists.

Doug said...

Revenant:

But Hagee's nowhere near as bad as Wright anyway.

Why not?

By the way, there are a lot of folks on here who seem to believe that black people are simply incapable of going to Rev. Wright's church and not agreeing with every last thing he says. I wonder how many of them are Catholics who attend church every Sunday and then go home and put a condom on before getting busy with their spouse.

Revenant said...

OK, the school system I went to had a "white" school and a "black" school. Not officially, of course, but actually. It's just how the lines were drawn. They were (I'm not kidding) separated by railroad tracks. The black kids lived on the other side of the tracks.

Ah, I see the problem here. You don't know what the word "segregated" actually means.

Segregation is when you deliberately separate one group from another based on some criteria. I.e., if you have a bunch of penguins and a bunch of parrots mixed together, and you separate out the penguins and put them in a separate cage that now contains no parrots at all, that cage is "segregated". If, on the other hand, the cage contains no parrots because the cage is in Antarctica and there is a distinct lack of parrots in the neighborhood, that is NOT segregation. That's just demographics.

To put that in real-life terms: if the reason there are no black kids in the school is that there are no black kids in the school *district*, the school is not segregated. The school is accepting everybody, regardless of race, but there just so happens to only BE one race in the area.

Hoosier Daddy said...

I imagine that many parishioners ignore his inflammatory charges if they disagree and simply appreciate the rest of his sermon.

Based upon the orgasmic responses of those attending it seems few were ignoring it.

I also imagine that suspending disbelief while watching Jurassic Park doesn't mean you walk out of the theater believing there is an actual island with dinosaurs roaming an amusement park.

So what are you saying? Listening to a Christian pastor rant about white racist America is the equivalent of watching a movie about dinosaurs? Wright's sermon is simply entertainment rather than preaching the message of Christ? If that's the case, it seems this becoming less of a church and more theater.

It is rather easy to listen to a sermon and get pumped up and then go home and forget about it.

I suppose so but then again I doubt that is Wright's intention don't you think? I don't think too many priests, pastors or ministers intend for the flock to go home and forget about it.

So Wright is just expressing his beliefs; it's up to others to decide how to consider them, or whether to accept them.

Again, based upon the response from his congregation, it certainly appears apparent they accept it with great enthusiasm.

barry said...

To say that America created AIDS is not "controversial," it's not a "rough opinion," and it's not "wrong" (a mistake). It's a lie, as Wright knows.

It is also a lie that black kids today get lower grades that non-blacks for similar work. It is a lie that the U.S. (the government, Wright implies) deliberately "imports" addictive drugs, which would indeed be a kind of genocide if it were true. Brown, white, black, and other entrepreneurs perform that service.

The purpose of such lies is to make others hate as passionately as Wright does. How can Obama reconcile this with his desire to move past our racial history?

Obama says he can't "disown" Wright. That's not the issue. What I ask of him is to tell his African American listeners that Wright and his ilk have fed them outright lies. It's obvious that Obama doesn't really feel that, at least not emotionally. That's a big problem for me. Maybe this campaign will help him get there.

Paul Collacchi said...

Watching the Right and the Left go after Barack Obama is like watching someone try go defend Michael Jordan, during his prime.

Face it, he's too quick for you.

Me, I'm making him my point guard.

Can we go back to getting Bush out of the White House?

Rocker 419 said...

I thought it was a very good speech. He addressed some, although not all, of the concerns he needed to address. I'm guessing he's pretty much secured the Democratic nomination with it. If any superdelegates were thinking of switching because of his pastor, they're probably going to stick it out with him. Will I vote for him? No way. Not because of race but because of the issues. But hey, at least thats something...

Revenant said...

But Hagee's nowhere near as bad as Wright anyway.

Why not?

Because Hagee is bigoted against Catholics, while Wright is bigoted against Jews, whites, Americans, the rich, and the middle-class. I.e., anyone who isn't poor, black, and left-wing. Heck, for all we know he hates Catholics too. We haven't heard all the sermons yet. :)

By the way, there are a lot of folks on here who seem to believe that black people are simply incapable of going to Rev. Wright's church and not agreeing with every last thing he says. I wonder how many of them are Catholics who attend church every Sunday and then go home and put a condom on before getting busy with their spouse.

Oh yeah, tolerating the Vatican's position on birth control is exactly the same thing as tolerating Wright's opinion that thousands of Americans deserved to be murdered on September 11th. I'm sure most people would agree that there's no really difference between those two positions at all -- and certainly only the most die-hard Republican toady would suggest that one viewpoint was less worthy of respect and tolerance than the other.

Sheesh. If that's the best you've got to offer in Obama's defense then Obama is doomed.

darrellhuff said...

The continued anger and divisiveness expressed by older blacks over racism experienced first-hand by them is not excusable, but it is understandable. I think that is all that Obama is saying in his speech. Even though I don't support Obama and will not be voting for him in November, I think that he hit the nail on the head in his speech.

Older white racists don't tend to hold on to their past hatred because they did not belong to the ethnic group that was wronged. If whites had been the wronged minority race, I think that it is disingenuous to say that we wouldn't be in the same place as the blacks are at this point in history.

I think that it is safe to say that the current incarnation of hate-driven black racism will diminish as the wronged generation ceases to exist and successive generations view past wrongs based more on historical rather than personal experience. If we are patient and keep our country strong, this divisive phase in race relations will eventually fade away into history and diminish as an issue that pits fellow Americans against each other.

Chalons said...

Obama brought put his children in front of Mr Wright every week, week after week, instilling victimhood and racism into the next generation.

There is no way that the crafted rhetoric of a speech can compensate for that.

Actions speak louder than words.

Obama is a fraud.

Titan said...

Some final thoughts....

Revenant: Maybe you missed the implication. I understand segregation. There were plenty of black kids in my district. But the school lines were gerrymandered (along with zoning laws) to "produce" black schools and white schools. This was not parrots in the Antartic. The system was 80% black, and we had 5 all-black schools and two all-white schools.

cedarford: "One can easily imagine a video emerging of Michelle Obama jumping up and down pumping a clenched fist yelling "You go, Rev Wright!!""

Funny, but I believe Michelle is not religious and does not attend any church.

"Bush's "Mr. Smithers", Condi Rice"

Hilarious

before I go... "We make up 90% of the population and if you want to do some chicken roosting, we'll just see how long they roost after the Tolerance Train leaves the station."

"This thread has convinced me; black people are just so goddamn lucky that if they don't like this country they should just go back to Africa, otherwise they should shut up with their whining and move to the back of the bus."

No comment. Just noting the statements.

Annnnnnd I'm out.

Hoosier Daddy said...

I wonder how many of them are Catholics who attend church every Sunday and then go home and put a condom on before getting busy with their spouse.

I did until I really went over the Catholic line and got 'fixed'.

Bad analogy there Doug, try again. You're confusing disagreeing with church dogma with disagreeing with racist hate speech coming from a supposed man of God.

The Catholic Church condemns the use of birth control of any kind. Ok I disagree but I don't find it offensive. Now if the good Padre at my parish started spouting off that all faggots are an abomination and will burn in hell and are contaminating us good Christians with thier AIDs infected blood, a disease that the Protestant dominated US government developed to kill off all the papsits then I would be finding another parish post haste as well as contacting the Bishop.

Simon said...

Blogger The Drill SGT said...
"Simon,I assume you mean "segregated, as a matter of law" as opposed to the defacto racial imbalance found in more than several schools cross the country."

Right, I mean segregated. Segregated, as opposed to simply not being racially diverse as a consequence of purely private factors. Segregation wasn't a lack of diversity, it was state-mandated separation. To suggest otherwise, it seems to me, is to profoundly misunderstand and understate the evil struck down in Brown v. Board. Still, since Obama shares that misapprehension with four members of the United States Supreme Court, he won't be lonely. Bottom line - there's no segregated school in America today, and if there was, someone would challenge it in court whence it would cease to be segregated. Segregation - and any other form of government-mandated racial discrimination in school assignment - is a long-dead relic of a bygone age. See Brown v. Bd. of Education, 347 U.S. 483 (1954); Griffin v. County School Bd., 377 U.S. 218 (1964); Green v. County School Bd., 391 U.S. 430 (1968); Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School Dist. No. 1, 127 S. Ct. 2738, 551 U.S. ___ (2007).

Revenant said...

There were plenty of black kids in my district. But the school lines were gerrymandered (along with zoning laws) to "produce" black schools and white schools.

Gerrymandered? You just said that the black kids and the white kids lived in distinctly separate neighborhoods separated by a clear boundary (i.e., the train tracks). How is that "gerrymandering"? You should get your story straight before you try telling these tales.

The system was 80% black, and we had 5 all-black schools and two all-white schools.

That would only be odd if the neighborhoods themselves were, individually, 80% black and 20% white. If the neighborhoods themselves were largely monoracial then you would expect the schools to be the same.

Revenant said...

No comment. Just noting the statements.

What's there to comment on? Mortimer (and his various aliases) is a troll who likes to make remarks like that in the hopes of starting a flame war.

madawaskan said...

Titan-

Honestly-

Rush to judgement does that ring a bell?

Mortimer Brezny-

Who "owns" your Penultimate Proof-

The comment-about going back to Africa and going to the back of the bus-

He's an Obama Supporter

Nuanced and all you know?

Crap that reminds me-

Anyone here know of that leadership study that the military did about people that use language that is black and white-

Such as absolutely ?

Mortimer Brezny said...

Again, based upon the response from his congregation, it certainly appears apparent they accept it with great enthusiasm.

Everybody knows that black church services are boisterous. Congregants get pumped up while there. And then they go home. As Doug said, "there are a lot of folks on here who seem to believe that black people are simply incapable of going to Rev. Wright's church and not agreeing with every last thing he says. I wonder how many of them are Catholics who attend church every Sunday and then go home and put a condom on before getting busy with their spouse."

The rest of your analysis is just silly. He's a preacher preaching and he knows that part of his role is entertainment. Whether people follow his advice is their own affair, and he knows that, too.

This is not a cult. He is not brainwashing people. Being a black Christian doesn't make you mentally retarded. They have the same critical skills of discernment that you do, except they like attending these firebreathing sermons. So what? I bet you like plenty of things other people find bizarre, but that doesn't mean you're a suggestible invalid.

palehose67 said...

I should note that this is the first time I've posted to your blog. I'm a UW law grad who started reading your blog last year. I'm as white as those bare backs on Bascom Hill during the first sunny, warm day in Madison, but I'm married to a black woman, and we have two mixed race children. With that as a backdrop, I simply wanted to say that I thought Obama's speech today was measured, insightful, intelligent and ultimately brilliant. The next time someone looks at me and my family and asks what I think of race in America, I can simply say, "What Obama said."

Mortimer Brezny said...

You're confusing disagreeing with church dogma with disagreeing with racist hate speech coming from a supposed man of God.

Oh, shut up. Since when did white supremacists become such pathetic whiners?

michael said...

Obama, the cynical politician, needed credibility in South Chicago so he partnered with the people who could buy him influence (Wright and Rezko).

He doesn't believe in Wright's foolishness because he doesn't believe in anything. His prime motivation is the ability to exercise power.

former law student said...

There are still people who believe that conspiracy theory? I thought it died out in the 90s.

Sure. A bunch of people still believe it.

http://www.mywire.com/pubs/Esquire/1998/09/01/170764

The Pariah
Two years ago, Gary Webb wrote a series of articles that said some bad things about the CIA. The CIA denied the charges, and every major paper in the country took the agency's word for it. Gary was ruined. Which is a shame, because he was right.

former law student said...

If the neighborhoods themselves were largely monoracial then you would expect the schools to be the same.

So schools aren't actually segregated if the neighborhoods they serve are segregated. Got it.

Mortimer Brezny said...

Mortimer (and his various aliases) is a troll who likes to make remarks like that in the hopes of starting a flame war.

I have one alias, which accidentally signs itself in at unpredictable times. I don't even recall the password. There is no secret attempt to fool people. As for being a troll, that's not what your mother said last night.

Mortimer Brezny said...

So schools aren't actually segregated if the neighborhoods they serve are segregated.

Yes. And it's not racism if the black people are upset.

former law student said...

Republicans can win if they show they have very qualified candidates ready to fix problems overseas and with the economy

[Guffaw]

If Republicans had qualified candidates they wouldn't have had to run W. for president.

Cedarford said...

Henry - If you're going to throw your grandmother and your pastor under the bus, can't you admit at least a failing or two of your own?

I guess when you're the one you've been waiting for, failings don't exist.


Pithy, Henry!

rhhardin said...

I go with my first Obama impression of his fans. You people are crazy.

What an empty suit.

If some black wanted to change the racial divide, he would be laying into ``black leaders'' something fierce.

Move past race by mocking those guys milking it until they have no viable narrative in any media at all.

former law student said...

Am I the only one who thinks that story smells worse than a mustard and relish sandwhich?

Everywhere I've ever eaten, mustard and relish have been free. Maybe "Ashley" pulled a senior citizen trick, and loaded up on condiment packets from fast food places.

mschaff said...

The choice is clear: If you fear or hate old white men, you will vote for Obama; if you hate blacks you will vote for McCain.

former law student said...

it's not racism if the black people are upset.

Hey, I quit hating porch monkeys years ago. The effing coons should just get over it.

John K. said...

Am I the only one who thinks Obama's best response to this "controversy" would have been to ask Rev. Wright to be his vice-presidential candidate?

Absurd reason-defying "controversies" deserve absurd reason-defying comments.

Black people have plenty of reason to see in the government a prime instrument of their oppression, starting with slavery and the reneging on the promise of 40 acres and a mule but not ending there. Taxing the labor and modest fruits thereof of people who've been denied their natural right to a free and equal share of the earth? Putting people in prison for violating (drug) laws whose supposed justification lies in protecting people from themselves? Come on.

Unfortunately, Obama, as a typical Democrat, proposes to fight fire with fire, government with more government, and robbery with more robbery. He himself is more of the same, the only difference being that he seems to have marginally more character and more charisma than either of his competitors. People looking to him for Change or Hope are high.

Revenant said...

FLS,

Do you see the humor value in responding to this statement of mine:

There are still people who believe that conspiracy theory? I thought it died out in the 90s.

... by linking an Esquire article written in the 90s?

The CIA did indeed work with drug runners. But the conspiracy theory that they were responsible for the inner-city drug epidemic (or even a significant part of drug trafficking in general) was always nonsense.

former law student said...

if you hate blacks you will vote for McCain.

Obama's been getting the white vote in mostly white states, and the black vote in largely black states. Hillary's success in largely black states has been largely due to her getting the white racist vote -- excuse me, the vote of those who are opposed to blacks' benefiting from Affirmative Action and other racially based social programs.

Michael_H said...

Anyhow, what did he say was his reason for his 20 year membership in a church that preaches racism, bigotry, hatred and anti-semitism?

I think I missed the part of the speech where he explained that. He danced around it quite a bit, but never got to the exact reason for giving the speech in the first place, it seems to me.

The next speech, where he explains why he voted "present" 130 times while in the Illinois senate ought to be a good one. "I didn't care either way" probably won't cut it.

B said...

Ann,

Thanks for mentioning Shelby Steele's column, specifically his use of the term bargainer.

I only commented about Shelby Steele and his use of the term bargainer in only - let's see - three of your previous Obama posts.

Glad you finally caught up.

Middle Class Guy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
former law student said...

Do you see the humor value in responding to this statement of mine:

There are still people who believe that conspiracy theory? I thought it died out in the 90s.

... by linking an Esquire article written in the 90s?


I thought you meant it had been debunked or disproven. Read the Esquire article -- it's quite good.

George said...

All this race stuff goes nowhere. That's why both McCain and Bill "Chill" Clinton won't touch it—no way, no how. It probably hardens support for Obama and draws undecideds to him.

If the goal is to elect McCain, let's look at non-racial policies—

Does Obama support the creation of a "global currency," replacing the pre-eminence of the dollar? That's the position of his chief financial advisor Paul Volcker, according to the Wall St. J. (The Bush Admin. just got Abu Dhabi to agree to stick with the dollar, but Qatar, I think, is planning to depeg)

The Air Force just conducted its third B-52 air strike in South Waziristan in 2008. The target? Mud huts. The place? Pakistan. Who's more likely to need to prove his manhood militarily? McCain or Obama?

Does Obama favor ZIRP? Zero Interest Rate Policy. It's what the feds did in the 1930s. Didn't work. That's where we're headed.

Revenant said...

So schools aren't actually segregated if the neighborhoods they serve are segregated. Got it.

I refer you to my earlier post, wherein I explained (for the benefit of the slower learners in the audience) what the word "segregated" means.

Middle Class Guy said...

He should have given this talk while sitting at the fireplace with his family around him. It would have sent a powerful message that he is not a racist and he is a man of American family values. A nice midsized dog would have been a great effect. The dog would have taken the talk over the top. Yep, he really needed a dog.

Fireplace, home, family, dog. Look, I am not like that other candidate out there. On a subconscious level, people would identify him with wholesome values and the other candidate as the one who hates American families and dogs and identifies with African villages. When was the last time we saw them together as a family? We already know what happened to the dog.

davod said...

"He pretty much stated that his white grandmother used to use the word "Nigger". I wonder how that felt to a small mixed child?"

Did his grandmother really say Nigger, or is his grandmother just part of the narrative.

Cindy Martin said...

Like John Kerry who ran as a hero on his Vietnman experience, and that heroism was found to be in question, so too, Obama runs as a candidate that unites and transcends race while attending a church and praising a mentor that preaches racial hatred and division.

Chickens are coming home......to roost.

Posted by: Cindy

Doug said...

Hoosier Daddy:

Now if the good Padre at my parish started spouting off that all faggots are an abomination and will burn in hell and are contaminating us good Christians with thier AIDs infected blood . . .

I'm glad that that would be enough to get you to storm out of your church.

However, folks like Falwell and Robertson spewed similar things, and the Republican Party kept going back to kiss their rings. You can say the Obama situation is not the same thing, and technically it may not be, but I fail to see how there's any practical difference in actual political terms.

Pogo said...

I was going to sit this election out, but I'll hold my nose and vote McCain, sumbitch that he is. Obama doesn't want my vote, it is clear.

If he wins, I hope he's just another Chicago pol who gets and gives. But if he starts to believe this messiah bullshit, we're in for a very long ride.

So in what country are white people still not the devil?
How is the weather there?
Do they need doctors?

Cindy Martin said...

Like John Kerry who ran as a hero on his Vietnman experience, and that heroism was found to be in question, so too, Obama runs as a candidate that unites and transcends race while attending a church and praising a mentor that preaches racial hatred and division.

Chickens are coming home......to roost.

Posted by: Cindy

former law student said...

Revenant said...

So schools aren't actually segregated if the neighborhoods they serve are segregated. Got it.

I refer you to my earlier post, wherein I explained (for the benefit of the slower learners in the audience) what the word "segregated" means.


Here's an article that will help you distinguish between de jure segregation and de facto segregation. Now, I know Latinate words may be hard for you, but I believe the article is not too far above your reading level:

http://encarta.msn.com/encyclopedia_761580651_3/Segregation_in_the_United_States.html

TMink said...

Barry wrote: "The purpose of such lies is to make others hate as passionately as Wright does."

There is another purpose, to avoid taking responsibility for and thus solving the problem.

Trey

Bob said...

He missed it.
It's not about race. It's about kooks, and the judgment show by someone who would have such a kook as a mentor.

Revenant said...

I thought you meant it had been debunked or disproven.

It is impossible to debunk or disprove any conspiracy theory. You can't prove that group X didn't cause event Y; you can only point out that there's no evidence that they did. It has, of course, long since been pointed out that there is no evidence that the CIA caused the drug epidemic -- not that anyone with common sense needed it pointed out.

Read the Esquire article -- it's quite good.

It does a nice job of moving the goalposts, if that's what you mean. Webb's claim (the one repeated here) was that the CIA and the Contras ran massive amounts of cocaine into the inner cities. No evidence supporting that claim has ever been found, and it was ultimately traced back to a couple of Nicaraguan drug smugglers Webb had spoken to.

What was true is that the CIA had worked with drug smugglers. That's very interesting, but it doesn't support the claim that the CIA "start[ed] a drug epidemic that was the scourge of the inner city for years and years." That's like supporting the claim that Jews control all of the world's finances by pointing out that George Soros is Jewish.

Simon said...

former law student said...
"So schools aren't actually segregated if the neighborhoods they serve are segregated. Got it."

The issue is coercion by government power, not result of private choices. That's the sine qua non of segregation: the exercise of government power to keep races separate. But the mere absence of diversity isn't segregation, so the direct answer to your question is, yes, schools would be segregated it the neighborhoods they serve are segregated, but the neighborhoods they serve aren't segregated merely because blacks choose to live in one neighborhood and whites choose to live elsewhere. The threshold question is choice: could a white person choose to live in block X and go to school Y? Could a black person choose to live in block Z and go to school Y? Unless the government prevents it, no segregation.

Bob's 3:57 PM comment nailed the issue at hand, IMO.

memomachine said...

Hmmmmm.

"But I also know that "god damn America" won't play well with most context-challenged Americans. So Obama had to do something. "

And what precise "context" is that?

Speaking as a first generation immigrant lucky enough to have been adopted by a wonderful American couple:

1. There is no single group of people, in the history of planet Earth, who are bigger whiny-ass ingrates than black Americans.

2. I'm not a racist and neither is anyone in my ancestry. So why do I have to pay because blacks can't let go of something that ended 150+ years ago?

3. Chinese immigrants, due to the Chinese Exclusion Act, couldn't become citizens for 100+ years after the end of slavery. But you don't see Chinese sitting around complaining all the time about it.

4. I know a lot of black people who immigrated from the Caribbean and Africa. They don't feel discriminated against because of their skin color. So why is it that it takes being born here to feel that way?

5. I've experienced discrimination and racism. So what? Suck it up. Life is hard. Don't like it? Too bad.

Revenant said...

However, folks like Falwell and Robertson spewed similar things, and the Republican Party kept going back to kiss their rings.

The parallel to the Republican Party's sucking-up to Robertson and Falwell would be the Democratic Party's sucking-up to Sharpton and Jackson.

What we're talking about here is Obama's personal preferences -- the people he associates with ostensibly for reasons OTHER than crass political advantage. Wright isn't some interest-group leader Obama had to suck up to in order to get elected; he is, according to Obama himself, Obama's personal mentor and spiritual adviser.

former law student said...

Does Obama support the creation of a "global currency," replacing the pre-eminence of the dollar? That's the position of his chief financial advisor Reagan's Chairman of the Federal Reserve Paul Volcker, according to the Wall St. J.

Revenant said...

Here's an article that will help you distinguish between de jure segregation and de facto segregation.

"De facto segregation" means that it isn't actually segregation, but has the same effect as if it was. That's what the term "de facto" means.

Now, I know Latinate words may be hard for you

Hey, you're the one who flunked out of law school. I know this stuff.

memomachine said...

Hmmmmm.

@ davod

"Did his grandmother really say Nigger, or is his grandmother just part of the narrative."

Since he's already changed his story a half-dozen times it's entirely possible he's just making this up.

*shrug* if his white grandmother really was racist then why did she take him in? And send him to an exclusive prep school?

...

You know here's a thing. His maternal grandparents lived in Honolulu where Obama graduated from school in 1979.

1. How many black people were ther in Honolulu in 1970's?

2. Isn't the average skin color in the Hawaiian Islands rather on the dark side? Even putting aside the strong sunlight and balmy temperatures, which encourages sun worship. How likely is it that a couple that deliberately moved from Kansas to Honolulu would have problems with people with dark skin?

I'm if I were a racist I think one of the last places I'd move to would be a state completely overrun with dark skinned people.

ZPS said...

It doesn't matter what any of you say...Obama comes out of this looking flawless. You might even say he looks clean...articulate.

The media have their new soundbites and all the feigned outrage will be over by C.O.B tomorrow.

I've just re-read the speech and think it's one of the best in modern history. And it'll be in anthologies 20 years from now.

Sorry, whiners. You lose. Obama wins.

former law student said...

memomachine's No. 5 inspired me to write this comment:

Speaking as a first generation immigrant lucky enough to have been adopted by a wonderful American couple:

What are you, a zipperhead?

1. There is no single group of people, in the history of planet Earth, who are bigger whiny-ass ingrates than black Americans.

I never hear black Americans complain. I guess they should be grateful that their ancestors were kidnaped, loaded into coffin ships, worked to death, had their children taken from them and sold, as if they were bitches or heifers.

2. I'm not a racist and neither is anyone in my ancestry. So why do I have to pay because blacks can't let go of something that ended 150+ years ago?

Chinks are the most racist people I know. They think they're better than whitey: smarter, harder working, more filial, more faithful. Blacks were officially inferior until 1964, when they were finally allowed to drink from the same water fountains as whites, and could have a grilled cheese sandwich inside a dime store same as white folks, so I don't know where you get this 150 years ago shit.

3. Chinese immigrants, due to the Chinese Exclusion Act, couldn't become citizens for 100+ years after the end of slavery. But you don't see Chinese sitting around complaining all the time about it.

Unlike people who were kidmaped and loaded as freight, Chinese people wanted to move here. Our government prohibited it, wisely fearing the Yellow Peril. Those that sneaked in then lied (e.g. "picture brides") to get women and children sent here. (Allowing men only made sure that the Chinese wouldn't reproduce, because no white woman would so demean herself.)

4. I know a lot of black people who immigrated from the Caribbean and Africa. They don't feel discriminated against because of their skin color. So why is it that it takes being born here to feel that way?

People who choose to move here can't rationally bitch about their decision. It's like a chick having sex without birth control and then complaining she's pregnant.

5. I've experienced discrimination and racism. So what? Suck it up. Life is hard. Don't like it? Too bad.

Typical slant-eyed bitch.

SGT Ted said...

So schools aren't actually segregated if the neighborhoods they serve are segregated.

Their neighborhoods aren't segregated either, except by self selection and not government action. Still not segregated, except in you and Morts racialist fevered brains.

See, I get your double standard. Whites are racist, even when they are not. Blacks that make the same kind of statements about whites that white racists make about blakcs, AREN'T racist; They're just "incindiary" or "fierce".

If whites denounce the racist staements and call out the speaker, it's the WHITES that are the racists.

I imagine the only people persuaded by Wright's most inflammatory charges are those willfully receptive to them, and that's why they came to that church. I imagine that many parishioners ignore his inflammatory charges if they disagree and simply appreciate the rest of his sermon.

Sure, just like the whites who go to the Klan rallies because they like the talk about a strong America and the "community". They really disagree with the flowing bigotry lunchings and are there for the fried chicken social afterwards.

You Obamaniacs have no leg to stand on. Your guy hangs with, was married by, and gave money to bigots and kooks and criminals.

Now you want us to ignore that, after years of you fuckers calling us racists at every turn? Fat fucking chance. Every 4 years I get to see the ads where your guys compare us to the KKK. IF you vote for W, more negros will be dragged behind trucks like James Byrd and black churches will be burned down.

Well, guess what? You're the ones defending racists now, not us.
We're going to rub your nose in that shitpile until November. Because its true. After years of sneering alleged moral superiority, you excuse the racists when they are on your side.

This is especially for Mort, who see's a racist in everybody he doesn't approve of like some Christians see Jesus in a slice of toast or a pat of butter.

How does it feel now?

amba said...

I thought the things he said about the black community were unusually honest. He is trying to be universal by being particular, a trick that most of us will have to pull off if it matters to us to be more than one thing at a time.

I was less pleased when I got to the redistributive Democratic boilerplate and the easy populism. I thought he largely nailed the race thing, but at the end of the day he's still a Democrat.

The Drill SGT said...

I'm if I were a racist I think one of the last places I'd move to would be a state completely overrun with dark skinned people.

and oh, BTW, zillions of folks there are the cross product of mixed marriages. Chinese, Japanese, Philipinos, Islanders, Whites, blacks, etc etc etc.

HoosierGirl said...

Great speech, well presented; STILL not voting for Mr Obama because of his POLITICS, not his color, gender, upbringing, grandmother, middle name, whatever. Because of his POLITICS.

Helen said...

I heard Obama's speech and I thought it was BS. In sum, BHO said this: America has a history of racism; whites are racist, even my white grandmother is racist; it's no surprise that blacks are racist cuz of what whites subjected blacks to. Wright is racist and speaks racism because of America's history of racism, sexism, classism, yadda-yadda. Vote for me, and I'll set you free.

Bullshit, Barack. You're as racist because you hear vile filth and refuse to condemn it when you heard it rather than condemning it when it began to embarrass you publicly. You don't understand that nothing will be perfect on this earth. You can't perfect this union because it is a union of men, and men are imperfect.

Doug said...

I just love how a guy like "sgt ted" can drop a profane, bilious, borderline-crazy rant like that, but it's still people like Obama who are full of hate.

Just keep running your mouth, buddy.

davod said...

"I think blacks find their churches and sermons cathartic. And if I were a black person living in this country, I would damn well need some catharsis."

I cannot see how listening to a hate filled rant every Sunday would purge you of all that has gone on the previous week.

Joe said...

I was stumped by Obama's claim that he can't "disown" Wright. That's just plain laughable and it further convinces me that Obama has no moral convictions whatsoever. The most baffling thing is Obama's complete failure to understand that Wright and his ilk are part of the problem; they aren't merely expressing racial divisions, but deepening them, and among blacks like Michelle Obama who led a life of privilege, creating them.

Revenant said...

Sorry, whiners. You lose. Obama wins.

Oh, I'm sure Obama wowed whatever small portion of swing voters actually bothered watching the speech.

But in a few months we're going to get to see some nice McCain adds with scenes from Wright's racist and anti-American sermons interspersed with Obama's praise for the man. Plenty of swing voters are going to see that, over and over again, until the fact that Obama's chosen spiritual adviser loathes white people and Americans is common knowledge.

And once they do, Obama can be as "clean" and "articulate" as he likes, but I doubt it will help him. He'll need to make a clean break with Wright and say that he was wrong to have ever supported the man. I doubt he can do THAT without losing a lot of the black vote.

Crimso said...

"If whites had been the wronged minority race, I think that it is disingenuous to say that we wouldn't be in the same place as the blacks are at this point in history."

Let's see, Jews, Catholics, Irish, Italians. Nope, no wronged minorities there. And what do you mean "we?" Got a mouse in your pocket? Just as blacks are not monolithic, neither are whites. Heck, some people actually can manage to take the human beings whose lives intersect with their own as individuals. But what do I know? I live and Tennessee and didn't vote for Harold Ford, Jr. And was called a racist as a result.

Revenant said...

What are you, a zipperhead?

What's with the racial slurs?

Our government prohibited it, wisely fearing the Yellow Peril.

So the government was "wise" to fear an invasion of "zipperheads", was it? Sheesh.

former law student said...

What's with the racial slurs?

I'm trying to test the validity of "memomachine's" assertion, that she can just suck up any racism directed towards her.

caplight777 said...

""I can no more disown him than I can disown the black community. I can no more disown him than I can my white grandmother.""

An inner city pastor takes a young Harvard lawyer under his wing, a young man who never had a consistent father figure--an he restores his faith in God through following Jesus Christ. Then he helps him and mentors him, marries he and his wife, baptizes their kids and shares the life of the parish and community that they are both from their vantage points trying to save.

Frankly, with all my conservative bona fides in tact and then some, I'd be disappointed in Obama if he did disown Rev. Wright.

I think there is a lack of understanding in general of the bond between pastors and many of their flock, especially a pastor that has been in a church for decades.

From Inwood said...

Re Mustard & Relish sandwiches

Miss Pettigrew, the movie, has a scene where the poor homeless, hungry wretch is being turned into a (superannuated) Cinderella, with an extreme makeover. The make-up artists put two cucumber slices over her eyes & when they leave she removes them & eats them. You know she’s hungry when….

Like Obama’s story about the undersupplied Captain, Obama "prints the legend".

Ambrose Bierce, I think, had a critique about Horatio Alger bildungsromans, in which he had the youth tying a string around a piece of fat & bringing it back up three times a day. Obama speechwriters, take note.

michael h

Great satire.

dbq

Spot on.

Cedarford

Obama's grandmother called him a Joo?

Joe said...

Slate says that you view the speech as a failure.

I believe that you probably see most things as a failure, and that nothing Obama can say will ever make your cynical, misinformed self happy.

I view this blog post as a failure, but hey. This is America. You're allowed to have as many maladjusted opinions as you want!

Revenant said...

An inner city pastor takes a young Harvard lawyer under his wing, a young man who never had a consistent father figure--an he restores his faith in God through following Jesus Christ.

Oddly enough, despite being from a culture which had been oppressed by the Romans in a manner which makes the 20th century black American experience look like a day at the county fair, Jesus never get around to delivering his much-anticipated "God Damn the Roman Empire" speech.

I forget -- was it "if someone strikes you on the right cheek, act smug when his countrymen get murdered"? Was that how that verse went?

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