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Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion: Presidential (Through Nov 2009) Donate to DU
metalluk Donating Member (266 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-19-08 06:28 PM
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52. The great MLK
was not running for public office when he gave his speech. It was an act of pure, selfless courage and a great moment in the battle for civil rights.

Obama's speech was motivated by political necessity, to save his campaign.

In his speech, Obama reversed his previous denials that he had ever heard Rev. Wright engage in inflammatory rhetoric of the anti-American variety. I don't personally care whether he did or did not hear the good Reverand's rhetoric (most of which is rooted in truth and only "wrong" by Wright's propensity for hyperbole and flame language). I do prefer, however, that political candidates get their stories straight. It's hard to have confidence in politicians who exhibit a sliding scale of truth, as in the case of Bill Clinton's responses when the Lewinsky affair first came to light.

The speech was undoubtedly well-written and well-delivered. Obama's fans were enthralled. Did he put the issue to rest? Not in the slightest.

Here's an excerpt from an article written by Jeff Jacoby for the Boston Globe, in one of the nation's most liberal states:

"In Philadelphia yesterday, Obama gave a graceful speech on the theme of race and unity in American life. Much of what he said was eloquent and stirring, not least his opening paean to the Founders and the Constitution - a document "stained by the nation's original sin of slavery," as he said, yet also one "that had at its very core the ideal of equal citizenship under the law; a Constitution that promised its people liberty, and justice, and a union that could be and should be perfected over time." There was an echo there of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., who in his great "I Have a Dream" speech extolled "the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence" as "a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir."

The problem for Obama is that Wright, the spiritual leader he has so long embraced, is a devotee not of King, - who in that same speech warned against "drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred" - but of the poisonous hatemonger Louis Farrakhan, whom the church's magazine honored with a lifetime achievement award. The problem for Obama, who campaigns on a message of racial reconciliation, is that the "mentor" whose church he joined and has generously supported is a disciple not of King but of James Cone, founder of a "black liberation" theology that teaches its adherents to "accept only the love of God which participates in the destruction of the white enemy."

Above all, the problem for Obama is that for two decades his spiritual home has been a church in which the minister damns America to the enthusiastic approval of the congregation, and not until it threatened to scuttle his political ambitions did Obama finally find the mettle to condemn the minister's odium.

When Don Imus uttered his infamous slur on the radio last year, Obama cut him no slack. Imus should be fired, he said. "There's nobody on my staff who would still be working for me if they made a comment like that about anybody of any ethnic group."

When it came to Wright, however, he wasn't nearly so categorical. Oh, he's "like an old uncle who says things I don't always agree with," Obama indulgently explained to one interviewer. He's just "trying to be provocative," he told another." Far from severing his ties to Wright, Obama made him a member of his Religious Leadership Committee -- a tie he finally cut only four days ago."

Such a clanging double standard raises doubts about Obama's character and judgment, and about his fitness for the role of race-transcending healer. Yesterday's speech was finely crafted, but it leaves some troubling questions unanswered."
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