| April 30, 2008
Advance for May 3, 2008
Lamentations of Jeremiah & Obama
by Mike McManus
Rev. Jeremiah Wright, whose televised anti-American sermon excerpts
embarrassed his church member, Sen. Barak Obama, told the National Press
Club, "This is not an attack on Jeremiah Wright. It has nothing to do
with Senator Obama. It is an attack on the black church
launched by people who know nothing about the African-American religious
"If you think I am going to let you talk about my mama and her religious
tradition...you got another thing coming," he said with a grin to cheers
of black clergy packing the press conference.
Bishop Harry Jackson, African-American pastor of Hope Christian Church,
and radio commentator on 400 stations, later countered: "I must take a
stand against heresy masquerading as Christianity. It is not the
media...which has attacked the black church. It is Jeremiah Wright who
has attacked and undermined the black church.
"The media has simply done its job of reporting outrageous
anti-American, anti-Christian and unpatriotic statements of Rev.
Wright," Jackson charged.
Curiously, after many allegations that his sermon excerpts were "taken
out of context," Wright defiantly defended his controversial assertions
at the National Press Club.
Mere days after the terrorism of 9/11 killing 3,000 Americans, Wright
proclaimed, "We bombed Nagasaki...We supported state terrorism against
the Palestinians and black South Africans, and now we are indignant
because...America's chickens are coming home to roost."
His explanation? "If you heard the whole sermon, first of all, you heard
that I was quoting the ambassador from Iraq...To quote the Bible, `Be
not deceived. God is not mocked. For whatsoever you sow, that you also
shall reap.' Jesus said, `Do unto others as you would have them do unto
you.' You cannot do terrorism on other people and expect it never to
come back on you. Those are biblical principles, not Jeremiah Wright
bombastic, divisive principles."
Nonsense! America inflicted no terrorism on Saudi Arabia, home of most
suicide bombers of 9/11. Wright completely misquotes Jesus who was
urging people to love others as they would like to be loved, not return
hatred for hatred.
Indeed, Jesus preached we should love our enemies.
Asked why he charged that the government created AIDS to kill black
Americans, Wright replied with an indignant, "I believe our government
is capable of doing anything."
This is evidence? No, it is a outrageous "rant" as Obama charged on
Wright's allegations had elements of truth. Asked about his patriotism,
he replied, "I served six years in the military. Does that make me
patriotic? How many years did Cheney serve?"
However, his charges sharply undermined Obama. Asked why the Senator
denounced Wright's sermon excerpts, the preacher explained, "He had to
distance himself, because he's a politician, from what the media was
saying I had said, which was anti-American... He did what politicians
do," saying politically expedient things.
Those comments were galling to Obama, who responded in a press
conference with a passion not previously shown: "I have spent my entire
adult life trying to bridge the gap between different kinds of people.
That's in my DNA, trying to promote mutual understanding to insist that
we all share common hopes and dreams as Americans and as human beings.
That's who I am. That's what this candidacy has been about.
"Yesterday we saw a very different vision of America. I am outraged by
the comments that were made and saddened...I have been a member of
Trinity United Church of Christ for almost 20 years. The person I saw
yesterday was not the person I met 20 years ago. His comments were not
only divisive and destructive, but I believe they end up giving comfort
to those who prey on hate, and I believe they do not portray accurately
the perspective of the black church. They certainly don't portray
accurately my values and beliefs. And if Rev. Wright thinks that that's
political posturing, as he put it, then he doesn't know me very well..."
he said sadly.
"When he states and then amplifies such ridiculous propositions as the
U.S. government somehow being involved in AIDS, when he suggests that
Minister Farrakhan somehow represents one of the greatest voices of the
20th and 21st century, when he equates the United States wartime efforts
with terrorism, then there are no excuses. They offend me. They rightly
offend all Americans. And they should be denounced. And that's what I'm
doing very clearly and unequivocally here today."
Why did the pastor torpedo a church member who might be elected
President? Narcissism, hubris and self-aggrandizement that will spark
future book sales and big lecture fees.
Christianity had absolutely nothing to do with it.
30+ Years / 1700+ Columns
2017: Column 1860: Cohabitation: A Growing Problem - Part I
Texting While Driving - A Killer
Why Have "Religious Nones" Tripled?
Norma McCorvey Roe of Roe v. Wade
The Worst Valentine: Cohabitation
Pornography: A Public Health Hazard
Christianity Gives Women Equal Opportunity
Sextortion Kills Teens
Assisted Suicide Is Growing
same sex marriage,
abortion and infanticide,