Is the Reverend Wright? by underground

Barack Obama has had to distance himself from his former pastor in light of the the Reverend’s controversial opinions being made public recently. Presidential hopefuls Democrat Hilary Clinton and Republican John McCain have sought to extract as much mileage from the controversy as possible. The media has leapt onto the story, questioning whether the (media-induced) uproar could derail Obama’s presidential bid.

But are Reverend Jeremiah Wrights comments fair?

The circus has gone on for a while now, the story first breaking in March of this year. Since then the controversial issue has plagued Obama through political debates against Clinton, and probable took a few votes off him in Pennsylvania (alongside Obama’s misunderstood “bitter” comments). Because of the negative impact this was have on his campaign, he has had to distance himself from the Reverend’s comments, the Reverend himself and his former church. Obama said Wrights were not only “divisive and destructive”, but they “end up giving comfort to those who prey on hate.” I can see what Obama is saying, and I agree in principle, but to me Wright’s words are just not as bad as what they are saying.

Hell I’m clearly no fan of any church or any religion, but I welcome any commentary from the pulpit that serves to highlight inequalities in any any country. And I think for the most part Wright sought to do this, unfortunately in that ridiculous oratory manner of his. Perhaps it was how he said it, more so than what he said that caused such a stir. And a lot of what he said, to me, made a lot of sense. Some argue that his comments have been taken out of context, either way what he has to say is better addressed than denounced.

The United States role in provoking the September 11 attacks in America appears to remain a taboo, out of bounds in the American mainstream media. Perhaps following President George Bush’s “brightest beacon of democracy speech soon after the event, people have swallowed the line that America was attacked because of it’s supposed freedoms and liberties (all of which have been reined in by the Bush administration since the atrocity). So perhaps the most controversial thing he said was that America was at least partially responsible for what took place on September of 2001. This is not something that one can say openly inside the States, however is actually a commonly held belief outside of that country. In fact directly after the attacks many countries had to openly declare they were not responsible, because many countries could be argued to have a motive for committing the acts. Even before the War in Iraq the US was not viewed favourably by many people around the world, in particular for their foreign policy. So the Rev’s comments would not have been as controversial outside of America’s borders.

He also claimed that Hilary has an edge over Obama because she is white. Of course she does. But he has an advantage in the election because he is a male. It seems this comment of his has been denounced just because he made it. It is, however, a tired and redundant argument, as Obama has succeeded in using his ethnicity to his advantage, as Hilary has also used her gender to obtain votes.

Also what really is so offensive about him saying “god damn America”, for the country treating it’s citizens as less than human. Is it because many Americans are so patriotic and religious, that sentiments for god and nation are one in the same? Forever repeating “god bless America”, what kind of sick God are you worshiping? One that condones the incredible poverty in that country? One that condones inequality? One that condones corruption? One that condones an illegal, unjust war? One that condones torture? One that condones arrogance, elitism and ethnocentrism? I could continue, but any thinking person can name other examples of areas where the United States is not blessed by any deity, apart from the most malevolent gods imaginable.

In a country where any criticism is labeled as “anti-American”, what kind of political or social debate can take place? The Reverend’s comments are polarising, sure, and I of course do not agree with everything he believes, but he has some good points. Unfortunately, America appears to prefer ignorance to any criticism of their “great” nation. How incredibly democratic and free they truly are!

As far as I’m concerned the greatest disappointment in this whole saga is the inadequacy of the American media to report this story impartially or fairly. To say the story has been sensationalised, is a great understatement. The pathetic reporting of this story was bought to my attention by a segment on the Daily Show. Why a parody news show does a better job than anyone at keeping the media and politicians in check is beyond me! Anyway, the segment on the reverend included a montage of footage from various networks, hyping up Wright’s latest speach on the matter. It clearly was a ridiculous speech, they guy is clearly an idiot, but again the Rev made some good points. These would of course be drowned out in the media by its biased and unprofessional lead into the story, particular the “you won’t believe what he says next” voice over on one network. To me this is evidence that the entire story is a media beat-up, concocted to add spice to an increasingly boring Democratic nomination. You have to see the clip to get what I mean.

So the reverend has been demonised, marginalised and effectively silenced, and America can keep on believing that they are the number one country in the world. USA! USA! USA!


4 Comments so far
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I believe this whole drama may have been orchestrated by Obama and Wright.
Obama has to win in NC. The Wright sermons were the biggest obstacle in NC.
I believe this was a desperation move.

Comment by citizenwells

Would you be able to expand on that?

Do you mean the most recent events, Wright’s latest interviews and speeches and Obama’s renouncing his comments?

I would agree Obama has realised he must distance himself from Wright, but I wouldn’t say that the latest comments from Wright (esp. the theatrics at the NCAAP convention)were orchestrated by both Obama and Wright.

Could you please elaborate?

Comment by undergroundnetwork

The timimg is what prompted me to consider the
Obama’s campaign has been imploding.
Obama must win NC.
I am in NC.
Many people in NC were offended by Wright’s sermons and speeches.
I believe this is a desperate attempt to gain
credibility in NC.
I do not believe it will work.
The other side of the coin is that this can
provide an excuse for Obama to bow out.
Think about it.

Comment by citizenwells

I would be surprised to be honest if Barack bowed out over this, as he is still leading in delegates and many nationwide polls. Is he still the favourite to take NC? It must be interesting to see how this how affair is being followed in that state which, as you say, is the epicentre of the whole debacle. My feeling is though, and I appreciate as an outsider I haven’t the best vantage point, is that this is more a media beat up than an issue that people actually care about, as opposed to the “bitter” comment, which many Pennsylvanians took to heart.

Is the media driving this campaign, perhaps in light of accusations that they have been light on Obama?

Comment by undergroundnetwork

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