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I just read the NYTimes Op-Ed by William Ayers - what a class act

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LynneSin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 09:38 AM
Original message
I just read the NYTimes Op-Ed by William Ayers - what a class act
You know, this guy could have taken advantage of having his name tossed in the headlights the way that McCain/Palin did but instead he knew the best thing for him to do is just shut up and stay out of those headlights.

And now, over a month after the election, Mr. Ayers wrote an amazing op-ed piece which shows what a class act it his. Sarah Palin should hang her head in shame with the way she kept trying to discredit Obama with such a weak association. Even Hillary Clinton knew better than to use that during her campaign.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/06/opinion/06ayers.html?...

The Real Bill Ayers
IN the recently concluded presidential race, I was unwillingly thrust upon the stage and asked to play a role in a profoundly dishonest drama. I refused, and heres why.

Unable to challenge the content of Barack Obamas campaign, his opponents invented a narrative about a young politician who emerged from nowhere, a man of charm, intelligence and skill, but with an exotic background and a strange name. The refrain was a question: What do we really know about this man?

Secondary characters in the narrative included an African-American preacher with a fiery style, a Palestinian scholar and an unrepentant domestic terrorist. Linking the candidate with these supposedly shadowy characters, and ferreting out every imagined secret tie and dark affiliation, became big news.

I was cast in the unrepentant terrorist role; I felt at times like the enemy projected onto a large screen in the Two Minutes Hate scene from George Orwells 1984, when the faithful gathered in a frenzy of fear and loathing.

<<< snip >>>

President-elect Obama and I sat on a board together; we lived in the same diverse and yet close-knit community; we sometimes passed in the bookstore. We didnt pal around, and I had nothing to do with his positions. I knew him as well as thousands of others did, and like millions of others, I wish I knew him better.




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iconocrastic Donating Member (627 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 09:43 AM
Response to Original message
1. A classy bomber. Nice.
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LynneSin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 09:48 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. clearly you didn't read the article
The guy never targeted human populations and he has some regrets for he has done in the past.
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Hellataz Donating Member (804 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:35 AM
Response to Reply #3
15. exactly
It's unfair to compare him to people like the unibomber and Bin laudin, Those people's goals were to kill people and create as much damage as possible to hurt america. Ayers and his group's goal was to damage or vandalize govt. structure to make a point and save america from an unjust war. They never intended to kill anyone.
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karynnj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 02:16 PM
Response to Reply #3
35. Even if he didn't target human populations he still risked killing people
what bothers me is that while he explains their reason for doing it - he does not clearly say it was wrong. I happen to think it was wrong.
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Maru Kitteh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 08:35 PM
Response to Reply #35
40. I know all the cool kids on DU think it's totally hot to excuse Ayers for his acts and behaviors
past and present. That's one bus I won't be getting on.
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coalition_unwilling Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:12 PM
Response to Reply #40
42. Bet you have no problem with the US killing
3 million SE Asians though . . . and all for a lie.

Just like Iraq-nam.

Whatever.
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coalition_unwilling Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:01 PM
Response to Reply #1
41. Welcome to my Ignore list -n\t
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grantcart Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 09:45 AM
Response to Original message
2. Very classy indeed.
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wyldwolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 09:49 AM
Response to Original message
4. oh dear god. The unibomber was a good writer, too.
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Lautremont Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 09:50 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. There's a difference between being a good writer and having nice penmanship.
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 01:58 PM
Response to Reply #4
33. Unbelievable.
:rofl:
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wyldwolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 02:39 PM
Response to Reply #33
36. Terry Robbins and Diana Oughton got what they deserved... too bad Ayers wasn't there
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Beacool Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 09:56 AM
Response to Original message
6. Oh yeah, he's a class act alright.
And the Unibomber is a swell gent too.

:crazy:
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Tatiana Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 09:56 AM
Response to Original message
7. I'm glad he is setting the record straight (and that he kept quiet during the campaign).
I've attended a few lectures of his and he is truly a brilliant mind and someone who has contributed greatly to our understanding of early childhood education.

What he did long ago was wrong. What he's done since then has been right.
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Mz Pip Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:05 AM
Response to Original message
8. What's this
"accidental explosion that killed three of our comrades" ? Does anybody know what that was about?
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RaleighNCDUer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:36 AM
Response to Reply #8
16. The townhouse bombing. They were constructing a bomb in a
Greenwich Village townhouse and it went off prematurely, killing three of the WU members. Those three are the ONLY people killed or injured by Weathermen bombings, because the policy then was to target structures that were uninhabited. They were attacks on the 'enemy' infrastructure, not personnel.
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merh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 01:07 PM
Response to Reply #16
26. this is a legitimate question and not intended to inflame
but there are those on the right that swear he was involved in the killing of a cop. Is that incorrect? Was a cop killed in any of the incidents attributed to the WU?

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rug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 01:54 PM
Response to Reply #26
31. 1981 Brinks Robbery
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ieoeja Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:14 AM
Response to Original message
9. I see the usual anti-Obama force is in this thread comparing Ayers to the Unabomber.

Proving Ayers good sense in keeping a low profile during the election.

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yodermon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:20 AM
Response to Reply #9
11. on cue.. fucking Pavlovian.
this thread needs tissues to wipe the drool.
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wyldwolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 11:07 AM
Response to Reply #9
21. I see the usually knee-jerkers calling people anti-Obama
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ieoeja Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 12:51 PM
Response to Reply #21
24. The anti-Obama comment doesn't apply to you.
Edited on Mon Dec-08-08 12:53 PM by ieoeja
You're just a DLCer who won't give up on that strategy.

That said, the other "unibomber" (for the record, it's "una" not "uni") post before I posted my comment is a Clinton supporter who has done nothing but post "concerns" about Obama since she began pretending to support him. She *is* anti-Obama. She pretends otherwise, but you'd have to be deaf and blind to believe her.

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wyldwolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 01:03 PM
Response to Reply #24
25. "You're just a DLCer who won't give up on that strategy."
Neither, apparently, will Obama.
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ieoeja Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 01:19 PM
Response to Reply #25
29. He gave up on a ton of it.

Bill Clinton made running against the Democratic congress the cornerstone of his 1992 campaign.

Bill and Hillary have both made a career out of running against liberalism. Obama, while promising to be the president for both sides, has actually marketed liberal ideas while also fulfilling that promise. Bill and Hillary never tried to market any ideas.

Obama ran a national campaign. Bill and Hillary ran only where they personally might win. Obama had to know in the general he wouldn't win a lot of those states where he campaigned anyway. But he was still out there selling the ideas and helping other Democrats get elected.

That last is where the DLC strategy failed miserably. We lost the House. We lost the governorships. We lost the state legislatures. But we won the presidency two** times out of four. The DLC strategy seems to be about winning the presidency and fuck all else. That is why I finally jumped ship after the 2004 debacle.


**And used those two times to cement this country further to the Right when the country thought Clinton in the 90s would "make the 80s look like the 60s made the 50s" to quote a movie line from that period. Yes, even though Clinton ran against the Democratic congress in 1992, a lot of us thought he wouldn't actually spend his time as president working against the Democrats.


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wyldwolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 01:36 PM
Response to Reply #29
30. umm...
Bill Clinton made running against the Democratic congress the cornerstone of his 1992 campaign.

:shrug: Link?

Bill and Hillary have both made a career out of running against liberalism.

Examples?

Obama ran a national campaign. Bill and Hillary ran only where they personally might win.

mmm.. so?

That last is where the DLC strategy failed miserably. We lost the House. We lost the governorships. We lost the state legislatures. But we won the presidency two** times out of four. The DLC strategy seems to be about winning the presidency and fuck all else. That is why I finally jumped ship after the 2004 debacle.

What does the DLC have to do with any of that??


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AndrewP Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 12:21 PM
Response to Reply #9
23. Exactly.
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Tarc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:19 AM
Response to Original message
10. People tend to forget just what we were up against in late 60's
A bigoted, paranoid egomaniac in the White House, an FBI head wielding dictatorial powers for decades, all of whom saw "the left", from civil rights leaders to hippys, as a mortal threat to their version of America.

It was WAR, and I do not begrudge the choices Ayers and the Weathermen made at all.
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LynneSin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:28 AM
Response to Reply #10
12. Thank you
Unibomber killed people on purpose. WU made it a point to not killed people but only buildings.

People don't get it.
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Sebass1271 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:48 AM
Response to Reply #10
18. I thought Lyndon johnson was president in the 60's...
and that he was a Democrat or considered a "leftist".. who were the leftist at war with? Which president?

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Sebass1271 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:49 AM
Response to Reply #18
19. never mind. it was nixon. duh.. just remember it.
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Hellataz Donating Member (804 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:30 AM
Response to Original message
13. He is a class act, I'm glad he wrote this, he was unfairly railroaded
Edited on Mon Dec-08-08 10:30 AM by Hellataz
I never thought he was the "big bad" everyone labeled him as. He made some misguided protests to end what he believed was an unjust war that was killing americans for no good reason. He bombed structures with the intent to get noticed and make a poltical point, not the intent to kill anyone. Was it right? No, of course not, but all things should be look at in context, not pieced together incompletely to prove a point like Palin and McCain did. Unfortunately he did lose a few of his fellow group members, as will happen when you engage in dangerous behavior as they all did, but behind their motives were good not evil, which is probably why today he is a respected educator and former chicago man of the year.

I'm very glad though that he didn't make a fuss about the mistruth out there until after the election. He showed his restraint and ability to remain calm and bide his time because he had a goal to hold onto. He didn't want to hurt Obama's campaign, so he allowed himself to be raked over the coals and refused to defend himself till after the election, so that he wouldn't add to the "obama/Ayers" media frenzy. I'm glad he did and I'm glad now he feels he's safe to come out and defend himself.
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Clio the Leo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:33 AM
Response to Original message
14. He is. And in a related story, Rev. Wright continues to show his hind end....
(and again, for the record, my problem with Rev. Wright stems not from what he said in those Youtubes, but how he handled the situation after the Youtubes came out.)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Wright: Obama made 'bad' choice to distance self, but it's ok
TRINITY | He also mocks 'dumb broad' from 'The View'
Recommend (6) Comments

December 8, 2008

BY MAUREEN ODONNELL Staff Reporter
President-elect Barack Obama made a "bad decision" by distancing himself from the Rev. Jeremiah Wright and his church, Wright said Sunday -- but that's OK.

"He's still my child," Wright said in a sermon in which he expressed pride in Obama's longtime association with Trinity United Church of Christ.

His talk was spiced with his trademark blend of history lesson, mimicry, singing, and -- depending on your point of view -- insults, or telling it like it is. One object of contempt seemed to be Elisabeth Hasselbeck of ABC's "The View," whom -- while not saying her name -- Wright twice referred to as a "broad," including once as "that dumb broad." Hasselbeck has criticized Wright on "The View."

Wright, speaking at Trinity on its 47th anniversary, said he was proud of "the only church that produced the first and only African-American president in the 211-year history of the United States. No other church can say that."

"The hatred of the media and the haters in politics may have caused him to distance himself from us, but the love of Christ will never allow me to distance myself from him,'' Wright said of Obama. "I can no more disown him than I can disown any other child of mine who makes bad decision. He made a bad decision, but he's still my child."

Wright also compared the detention camp at Guantanamo Bay and Abu Ghraib Prison to the abuses of old colonial powers. "What we doing with a base in Cuba?" he asked. "We just take stuff."

He retired from Trinity this year but was invited back to speak Sunday. Wright and his sermons were a lightning rod in the presidential race, particularly one in which he said "God damn America." Obama subsequently cut ties with Wright and the church where he was married and where his children were baptized.

Also at Trinity on Sunday was the Rev. Michael Pfleger, whom Wright called "my main man." Pfleger drew heat with criticism of then-candidate Hillary Clinton last spring.

http://www.suntimes.com/news/politics/obama/1318979,wri...
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Hellataz Donating Member (804 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:45 AM
Response to Reply #14
17. he has a point about Hasslebeck
She is ignorant. Plus she attacked him, he has a right to attack back.

As for his other statements, he just sounds like many other americans, who are frustrated with how the government has hurt this country. People get so freaked out when you question "america" or our Goverment, but if you don't then they remained unchecked to do what they want and hurt people and this country in the process.

Obviously Obama, who is a good man in his heart, saw something in Wright as evidence by how long their association was. And Write is correct about how Obama had to distance himself from him and others like Ayers because of the media and the McCain campaign, though Obama probably is not in agreement with how these man handled themselves in their past, it doesn't change who they are or were to him when he knew them or associated with them.
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Clio the Leo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:57 AM
Response to Reply #17
20. Taz, you know I love you and all but....
Edited on Mon Dec-08-08 10:58 AM by Clio the Leo
.... stooping to THEIR level never gets us anywhere. All it does is justify their righteous indignation. Elizabeth isn't even worth wasting a breath over.

Oh and on a side note .... when George and Dick leave OUR house, do we get to yell "BYE BYE B*THCES!!!!" lol

(sorry, inside joke between Taz and me)
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Hellataz Donating Member (804 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 01:12 PM
Response to Reply #20
28. LOL, You're right, we should take the high road, despite Hasselbeck being a complete tool


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Laughing Mirror Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 12:16 PM
Response to Original message
22. "we sometimes passed in the bookstore"
For that reason alone, they would have to be crucified by the righteous idiot Sarah Palin. Obama in a bookstore. Who could ever imagine coming across George Bush in a bookstore?

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harun Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 01:11 PM
Response to Original message
27. Obama being associated with Ayers was a plus for me even though I knew
it wasn't like they really knew each other.
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 01:57 PM
Response to Original message
32. If you liked that, you might check out Amy's interview with him.
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karynnj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 02:14 PM
Response to Original message
34. One part of his op-ed is still unacceptable to me
I never thought his "connection" to Obama was a problem. He is an expert on education, consulted by even the Daley administration (we all now the current Mayor Daley's father was not exactly a member of the SDS). I also think he has likely done some good things in recent years per all the accounts of people who should know. However, he still has an enormous blind spot to the fact that what he did in the 60s/70s was completely wrong.

As a college student then, I knew the frustration people had that even huge demonstrations and teach-ins to inform people looked like they did little to change the trajectory of the war. I could understand if he EXPLAINED that was why they went to violence that they targeted against property. He should then have pointed out that not only did it not work, it was morally wrong. There was always a real possibility that someone - a police man or fireman responding or an innocent passerby could have been injured and killed. That 3 million people in Vietnam were killed was NOT changed by whether buildings were blown up in America.

I know that many students I knew actually moved away from the antiwar movement, while of course staying antiwar, in revulsion of leaders like that. The weathermen tarnished the anti-war movement. They in no way moved anyone in their favor.

So, yeah I think it was great that he stayed out of the spot light before the election, but I absolutely do not see him as classy.
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 03:42 PM
Response to Reply #34
37. The Weatherman shifted their tactics in direct response to FBI slaughtering
Black Panthers with no consequences. They didn't just wake up one day and think it was a good idea to use violence for no reason.

I could never do something like that, but I sure can understand how the thinking went down that road. People were being killed in their beds by the government.



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karynnj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 06:33 PM
Response to Reply #37
38. He actually seemed to say that they went that route
because peaceful protest wasn't working. I was a college student at the time and at least where I was the ugliness of what the weathermen were doing seemed to make things worse.

This really is an example of 2 wrongs not making a right.
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Douglas Carpenter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 08:20 PM
Response to Original message
39. Kick and recommended. Excellent article
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greguganus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:25 PM
Response to Original message
43. And if Ayers had been associated with McCain alot of people here would want him in Gitmo.
A classy bomber indeed. :puke:
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