Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The Honorable Can Fight Back

Barack Obama gave a press conference today. I watched with a heavy heart as an honorable man took leave of his former minister and quite possibly his church.

Angered, saddened and feeling betrayed by the spectacle his former pastor, Reverend Jeremiah Wright, made of himself over the past few days, Obama finally cleared the air. Anyone who watched should have no doubt that what Jeremiah Wright has at times preached is in no way a reflection of what Barack Obama believes.

I had intended to do this post today before watching that news conference. I wanted to say to Obama that there comes a time when turning the other cheek is no longer enough. The question is asked if you're tough enough for the presidency. Even with a new, more thoughtful and civil style of politics there is a time when enough is enough. A time when striking back is called for. Necessary. And, yes, expected. This is such a time in regard to Reverend Wright.

Obama beat me to my post. The instant analysis following went through the usual drill. Will it help or hurt? Is it political? Is it personal?

I hope it helps - it clarified how Obama feels. Is it political? Yes, to the extent Wright's remarks and the timing of them were an insult to both Obama and his campaign. Is it personal? Absolutely. While he made it perfectly clear Wright was his pastor, no more, no less, how hurtful and astonishing is it when the leader of your own church defiles everything you stand for? A man of God? I'd look for every rationale possible too.

I listened to a black NBC reporter tell how she had attended the church while living in Chicago. She explained not all attend services every week and in her time there she had never heard a diatribe such as we've been witness to in sound bytes for weeks. If it's true for her I have no doubt is is true for Obama.

Did Obama turn a deaf ear for too long a time? I will take him at his word. I know for myself, however, I've turned a deaf ear when friends have pushed the envelope. I'm sure some will say the same about me. You continue the relationship hoping it will change or that you misjudged.

You know the saying, fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me. I've gone back for the third dose more than once and have been burned an equal number of times. It's the way I am. Aren't a lot of us the same?

I can understand dirty politics. It's ingrained in the way the process is carried out in this country. I don't have to like it nor the politicians who have no way of winning without it.

But for the leader of a church to do to a presidential candidate what the Reverend Wright has been doing to Obama is beyond excusable. It is not about "Black Liberation" theology. It is about Reverend Wright and his fifteen minutes of fame. What else could his motivation be?

I find the thought that a man of God might be purposely trying to bring down the Obama candidacy out of some twisted sense of jealousy is reprehensible. If it's merely for his own aggrandizement, it is beyond reprehensible.

Talk about a Judas!


Rufus said...

Wow, powerful video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JicZeBkg67A

Some of the comments are a bit strange... the speech in Philly was very, very gutsy and could have easily gone the other way... the comments have an underlying assumption that he could have foreseen Wright's behavior over the past couple days....

You can see the sadness in his face and in his voice... hard to fake that level of disappointment and sadness.

Betty said...

You said it better than I did.

Anonymous said...

My life yesterday was a "Three Stooges" movie, starring me. So I did not see the news conferrence. On reading about it this morning, I was reminded of the saying, "with friends like these".... One has to wonder just why Wright is trying to destroy the chances for the first bi-racial president. But I am also reminded of Maya Angelou saying, "when someone shows you who they are, believe them". Over the twenty year time span in question, I'm sure Wright preached this drivel. My answer to my own question is, perhaps Obama embraced the doctrine of, love the man, despise some of what he says. That is laudable. But we return to the question of why, Rev. Wright? The Christian doctrine demands that we love thy neighbor. (Often quite difficult) So why do you preach hate and why do you return the loyalty of Obama with an effort to destroy his candidacy. CU

Word Tosser said...

Rev. Wright has a book coming out next month. is that the reason he grand slammed his friend? I don't know.. but like CU says, "with friends like these"

The running joke is... did the Republican's pay him?

It is sad that once again, Obama has to account for someone in his life and not about the issues and what he believes in. It is old history. Just Wright made it currant again.