Tuesday

Rev. Wright, an enemy in a friend's clothing...


We all anticipated that youth, race, and Senator Clinton would be obstacles that Senator Obama would have to overcome, but we never imagined that an unlikely Judas was lurking in his camp. Rev. Jeremiah Wright the retired pastor of Senator Obama’s church, keeps sabotaging Obama’s campaign. A month or so ago, we were all surprised to learn that Obama’s old pastor had uttered racially hostile, unpatriotic, and arguably blasphemous statements. Surprisingly, Obama overcame those comments with aplomb when he made the most significant speech on race since “I Have a Dream”.

Not only did Obama overcome Wright’s comments, he returned the conversation on race into one that he controlled. With that one speech, he was able to pay homage to the struggles of Black folk and express sensitivity to the feelings of “typical” White people. He explained how American history created racial division, but emphasized that he was committed to uniting this country. In under an hour, Obama raised our consciousness and returned our focus to the issues. And his speech put the race issue in the proper context.

Now the race issue and Rev. Wright are back in the news, in a bad way. This past weekend, Rev. Wright destroyed a great deal of the progress that Obama had made. Rev. Wright decided that he needed another moment in the spotlight. So, he did it in the only way he knew how, he started running his mouth.

Rev. Wright started a verbal street fight with Obama, without provocation, and attempted to give the fight legitimacy by cloaking it under the guise of “defending the Black church”. He acted like someone stole his marbles; and apparently that someone was Obama.

Even though he hasn’t admitted it publicly, Rev. Wright is clearly pissed off at Obama. I imagine that Rev. Wright was not moved by the balanced approach of Obama’s famous speech. Instead of hearing racial unity, he heard Obama selling out him and the Black church. So, as street rules dictate, Rev. Wright fought back, and he fought back hard.

Personally, I think that Rev. Wright’s anger is misplaced. However, assuming for a moment that Rev. Wright has a legitimate beef, this was “house business”. If Wright thought that he deserved an apology from Obama, he should have addressed that matter with Obama, privately. Instead, he has elected to distract voters from the issues, embolden the Clinton campaign, and give the Republicans ammunition to portray Obama as being dangerous to White people.

Rev. Wright’s behavior indicates that his eyes have deviated from the prize—getting Obama in the White House. The irony is unmistakable. Rev. Wright may become the biggest obstacle to America having its first Black president and not the racism that he preaches about.
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