Just got done reading BO’s big speech on race he made earlier today, as well as some of the many blogger reax to it. As you can see from that link, there’s no shortage of opinions out there on this continually developing controversy. You can view the full 35 minute speech here:
My initial assessment of the speech is that it accomplished nothing, and was filled with moral equivalences galore, such as him saying he could no more disown Rev. Wright than he could his own white grandmother, who made comments about black people in the past that made Obama “cringe.” Same same for the black community. Disowning the Rev. to him would be like disowning the black community. He also implied in parts of the speech that we all knew people – black and white – who have made racist comments but who were/are also essentially good people who meant/mean no harm. IOW, Rev. Wright is overall a wonderful man, but he makes mistakes sometimes with how he talks, as do most people, on issues of race, so like, no one in this country can claim the high ground.
Barack Obama is doing now what he did in South Carolina last October after the controversy erupted over his invitation of “anti-gay” pastor Donnie McClurkin – who is black – to be a part of his “Embrace the Change” tour. Gay groups were bigtime upset and let him know it. While BO didn’t pull McClurkin off the tour, he added to it an openly gay white pastor, which upset some black gays. He was attempting to please everyone, and in the end he only impressed black evangelicals. The gay community wasn’t satisfied.
The same thing will happen here, I think. He’ll please the people who already support him, but his speech won’t have much – if any – positive impact on most anyone else. Frankly, I resent Barack Obama’s duplicity on this issue as much as I resent how his campaign played the race card against Hillary and Bill Clinton prior to the SC Dem primary. He’s claimed in the past that he’ll be the candidate who can help bridge the racial and religious divide, but apparently he’s been unwilling to do it in his own church until it became front page news for a sustainable period of time. I’m not buying for a second that he never heard Rev. Wright disparage a white man or a Jew based on his race or religion. Disparaging the white man is what the black liberation ‘theology’ Rev. Wright practices and preaches is all about. The only way BO supposedly missed all this is if he wore ear muffs to church every Sunday. And what about his kids? What did they hear?
Obama The Walking Contradiction has acknowledged that he has indeed heard some of Wright’s controversial remarks … just not the ones that have been reported in the press (uh huh), which stands to reason that his daughters, too, were likely exposed to Wright’s incendiary preachings. Will they grow up thinking America is just “downright mean,” too?
James Taranto gets to the heart of the matter:
So here we have, on the one hand, an old white woman who would be completely ordinary and anonymous but for her grandson’s astonishing political success, and who harbors some regrettable prejudices; and, on the other, a leader in the black community who uses his pulpit to propagate an ideology of hate.
Obama said this morning, “I have asserted a firm conviction–a conviction rooted in my faith in God and my faith in the American people–that working together we can move beyond some of our old racial wounds, and that in fact we have no choice if we are to continue on the path of a more perfect union.”
But if he cannot speak out unequivocally against the public, organized bigotry of his spiritual mentor, how can he possibly live up to this promise?
Exactly. What Barack Obama wants people to do is to “hope” he will live up to his promises to bridge the racial and religious divides, to have “faith” that he will put his plan into action. But what he unknowingly did today was to show people that he was unwilling to do so in his own church. In other words, the nudge nudge wink wink his campaign gave to the Canadian Consulate General regarding NAFTA is exactly what Barack Obama has been doing all along on the issue of race. Saying one thing in public, while doing nothing in private with the man he calls his “spiritual mentor.”
Just words? Yes. Once again, just words.