On Obama’s Pastor, Jeremiah Wright

“Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.” — Martin Luther King, Jr.

The story of Barack Obama’s pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, hit the MSM over the last few days. But it is a story that has been simmering for quite some time. A quick Google search reveals a Rolling Stone story from over a year ago,with quotes from Wright that I’ve never heard in a pulpit. Obama, no doubt realizing that Wright might be a problem, disinvited him from his presidential announcement. Yet until the stuff hit the fan, Wright remained a part of the campaign, his testimonial only having recently been removed from the candidate’s website.

In January 2007, Obama had this to say:

Obama says that rather than advising him on strategy, Wright helps keep his priorities straight and his moral compass calibrated.

“What I value most about Pastor Wright is not his day-to-day political advice,” Obama said. “He’s much more of a sounding board for me to make sure that I am speaking as truthfully about what I believe as possible and that I’m not losing myself in some of the hype and hoopla and stress that’s involved in national politics.”

This is what Obama had to say in his HuffPo blog last week:

I first joined Trinity United Church of Christ nearly twenty years ago.

[…]

The statements that Rev. Wright made that are the cause of this controversy were not statements I personally heard him preach while I sat in the pews of Trinity or heard him utter in private conversation.

I’m having a bit of trouble with Obama’s statements here. The only plausible explanations I can come up with for not hearing these kinds of statements is that he didn’t go to church very often or he wasn’t very close to the pastor. Neither of those things makes much sense. After all, this is the church he was married in. This is the church that his children were baptized in. And this is the church that he has donated a lot of money to.

For Obama to say that he’s never heard these things strains credibility. And at least one Obama supporter agrees with me.

Unlike Donna Brazile, who said on Sunday’s TV show that she attends a mostly white Catholic church (and, therefore, should have kept her mouth shut instead of adding fuel to the fire), I’ve attended mostly black churches as well as mostly white churches. I can say without hesitation that I’ve heard black pastors say things that would make white people uncomfortable. Heck, I’ve heard black pastors say things that make me uncomfortable. (As a matter of fact, the pastor at the church that I grew up in, the one that I was baptized in, the one that my father was ordained in, said something that has kept me away for a number of years.) But the language of Wright? Never.

I’m not buying that Wright only said these things when Obama was absent. The very things that Obama says attracted him to this church and its pastor -“a congregation that does not merely preach social justice but acts it out each day” – belie that. Obama’s statement was an attempt to mitigate the damage, just as his disinvitation was. What Obama has demonstrated that he’s just another politician, willing to do and say whatever is necessary to get elected.

Or, as MLK Jr., said, he’s just dangerous.

UPDATE: See this article on Obama’s church. h/t: Below the Beltway

UPDATE2: The dates mentioned in that article are wrong. See here.

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68 thoughts on “On Obama’s Pastor, Jeremiah Wright

  1. Very well said! If only the masses would come to this realization. I found the following post on a CNN page this morning it reads as follows.

    BEGIN QUOTE
    “If I judged everyone by those they were aquainted with and their pastors, relatives or friends, I probably wouldn’t have very many friends or relatives left myself.

    Besides I always try to remember when I point fingers at someone else there are always three pointing right back at me!!

    All 10 of us still plan to vote for Obama!” – BillyJean.
    END QUOTE

    I’m afraid if that is the general attitude out there, we are all in for a rough ride. 🙂
    Ken Yaecker.

  2. Watch Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s 9-11 sermon in context
    Already 180,000 people have watched this video

    Jeremiah Wright’s God Damn America in context
    Already 40,000 people have watched this video

  3. In a 3 minute soundbite of Jeremiah Wright, the last 1 minute which is most crucial, never get played or presented to public for an opinion uhmmmmmmm I wonder why. Do you think that, A MAN SAYING,

    “JESUS TEACHES HIM TO LOVE HIS ENEMIES”, is an important character trait.

    MAYBE NOT WHEN YOU ARE DOING A HIGH-TECH LYNCHING!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Regarding Jeremiah Wright God damn comment:

    When the republicans was selling George Bush as a conservative christian all I heard here in the south was “God was bringing damnation and judgement on America when 9/11 happened, because of the all the innocent blood being shed in the abortion clinics. But when Jeremiah Wright say God is damning America for it’s unjust treatment of the poor and blacks it’s offensive. PLEASEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE give me a break.

    I tired of media telling me what I should “THINK”.

  5. I was a Trinitarian and ceremonies I witnessed were very explosive and moreso enpowering. The cover-up the world pretends not to see! Well Pastor Wright educates his members/vistors on the reality of it, as a whole. Anyone can look at Jeremiah Wright and tell he has white blood running through him. However, that is not the point, he is against the tactics and sacrafices white american greed imposes on black people and people undeserving of their selfishness. You are right, 20 years of sitting in a service with one preaching reality…..is very intimidating! I am glad that Obama knows who is. Obama being such a strong individual is not afraid, intimidated, or scared to grab the hands of others…despite color…..and those opposing him….to embrace the change that is needed and long over due!! Unlike the ignorance of others he knows things can not stay the same or under the leadership of the cold greedy american politicians that are now being housed. If republicans are elected we all are going to pay a much higher price than what we are now experiencing; gas prices, healthcare, outsourcing, decline in economy, more poverty, higher crime rates and so much more. If we could only come together….we would help ourselves as well as many others!! Also, regarding the kkk statement with the referencing of Pastor Wright – Jeremiah has not and does not have blood caused by murdering others on his hands or the mindset to justify mass murdering for being a certain color on his hands. He talks about innocent people being killed because of greedy americans. If people don’t know by now (and I happen to think they do) what happen with 9/11, you are not in touch with reality. Suggestion: Go rent Michael Moore DVD – 9/11 movie.

  6. Before anyone writes another blog entry on this, I really think they should read the *whole sermons* from which the controversial quotes came.

    For instance, just reading a little further into the “God damn” controversy shows that Wright wasn’t in any way preaching violence…he was preaching against it:

    “The government gives them the drugs, builds bigger prisons, passes a three-strike law and then wants us to sing ‘God Bless America.’ No, no, no, God damn America, that’s in the Bible for killing innocent people,” he said in a 2003 sermon. “God damn America for treating our citizens as less than human. God damn America for as long as she acts like she is God and she is supreme.

    That sounds like religion to me — that damnation is called for in the bible for killing innocents, treating people as less than human and for acting like God. It may not be what *I* believe, but it’s really just not controversial in content — it is of course, controversial in delivery. However, when Falwell et al. went after the same topic they went after individuals (not our country’s policies) — they named gays, abortionists, pagans ( I can’t remember them all, I’m sure feminists were in there too).

    While Wright speaks in a fiery manner, he doesn’t condone or preach violence. He speaks out angrily against injustice.

    On the point of whether or not Obama heard hateful things (or overheated rhetoric) — well, it looks like after combing through as many sermons as they could find, this is what they’ve got. And he was at that church how long? Even if we just go by the 20 years, that’s what? 900 sermons?

    Go ahead and google the text of his Audacity to Hope sermon, too. Just for some context about what was happening in his pulpit.

    (If it matters, I’m white and not at all involved in organized religion.)

  7. Look in the mirror first before you condemn pastor Wright,America’s past and present are the same.Nothing can save this country,not Hillary,Obama or McCain!Look at what this country has come to the brink of disaster,the war in Iraq,displacement of american workers,corporate greed,lying politicians, and the news media which is self serving not reporting the real truth on race in this country! Who are you to judge anyone, this government invaded Iraq on lies.Also all around you -you see that this nations politicians don’t enforce the laws it creates! As a black man in this country I deal with racisim every day of my life! I don’t agree with pastor Wright’s statement on aids,but, I do agree with what the pastor say about this country!I suggest you read psalms 82:1-8.

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