jeremiah wright

On the Political Dark Arts

The Dark Arts of Politics has an undeserved bad rap.  To begin, let's quote the classic master:

My view is that it is desireable to be both loved and feared; but it is difficult to achieve both and, if one of them has to be lacking, it is much safer to be feared than loved.

Next, let's quote the modern master

People react to fear, not love --they don't teach that in Sunday School, but it's true.  

While it doesn't hurt to give voters a positive reason to vote for you (and it frequently helps) the most important thing to do in any election is the make the voters hate the other guy more.  The Dark Arts are an absolutely essential component of any successful politcal campaign/movement. A brief history of successful recent Republican Presidential campaigns shows this to be so.

In 1968, the Presidential election occured against the failure of Lyndon Johnson's Great Society.  Johnson's welfare policies, aided and abetted by local politicians like New York's John Lindsay, gutted economic activity in America's cities.  Various Supreme Court Decisions, also abetted by local politicians like Lindsay, gutted the ability of local police forces to fight crime.  Taxes, Crime, and Welfare were all up; the result was urban riots across America.  When citizens objected to this state of affairs, politicans like Lindsay called them racist.  In addition, the cultural excesses of the hippie generation horrified many more traditional Americans.  People legitmately resented what was happening around them.

Against this background, Richard Nixon realized that most Americans were ordinary people trying to raise their family and live a good life.  Americans deserved respect and would vote for a politician who gave it to them; that was the origin of Nixon's 'Silent Majority.'  Nixon was able to channel the frustrations listed above to form a new political coalition as blue collar Democrats abandonded their ancestral party in droves.

The contrast between the respective parties' conventions that year is telling.  In a (reasonably) orderly manner, Republicans nominated Nixon and adopted a party platform promising 'law and order' and 'peace with honor [in Vietnam].'  Democrats, by contrast, were barely able to nominate a candidate and had a riot outside their convention.  When one party has an orderly convention and the other has a riot, why shouldn't the non-riot party campaign on law and order?

In 1972, Democrats handed Nixon a gift by nominating the candidate of Acid, Amnesty, and Abortion on a platform of "Come Home America."  Republicans countered by pointing out that the Democrat Party "has been seized by a radical clique which scorns our nation's past and would blight her future."  Nixon won a 49 state landslide.  Need I say more?!?

Reagan's use of the Dark Arts are particularly fascinating.  In the context of the Machiavelli quote listed above, Reagan was one of the few leaders who genuinely made himself BOTH Loved AND Feared.  Reagan's sunny optimism and the fact that he was ultimately a successful President cause us to forget that he was also willing to play political hardball when he had to.

In 1980, shortly after the Republican Convention, Reagan appeared in Philadelphia Mississippi and gave a speech that has been taken out of context by liberals ever since.  In this speech, Reagan made the pedestrian statement that:

I believe in states’ rights. I believe in people doing as much as they can for themselves at the community level and at the private level. And I believe that we’ve distorted the balance of our government today by giving powers that were never intended in the Constitution to that federal establishment.

Taken in context, it's obvious this was a simple statement about the role of the Federal govt. in economic policy.  While the content of Reagan's statement shows no racial meaning, he had to know it would antagonize the left.  This statement led liberals to characterize Reagan supporters (and working class soft Carter supporters) as racist.  This, in turn, fed on the same resentments Nixon did in a much more subtle way.  On top of that, Reagan did it with a smile on his face.  Simply brilliant!

Reagan's re-election campaign actually used the dark arts far more liberally than his first race.  At the convention, in Dallas, Reagan's U.N. Ambassador assailed the moral equvalence of San Francisco Democrats

They said that saving Grenada from terror and totalitarianism was the wrong thing to do - they didn't blame Cuba or the communists for threatening American students and murdering Grenadians - they blamed the United States instead.But then, somehow, they always blame America first.When our Marines, sent to Lebanon on a multinational peacekeeping mission with the consent of the United States Congress, were murdered in their sleep, the "blame America first crowd" didn't blame the terrorists who murdered the Marines, they blamed the United States.But then, they always blame America first.When the Soviet Union walked out of arms control negotiations, and refused even to discuss the issues, the San Francisco Democrats didn't blame Soviet intransigence. They blamed the United States.But then, they always blame America first.When Marxist dictators shoot their way to power in Central America, the San Francisco Democrats don't blame the guerrillas and their Soviet allies, they blame United States policies of 100 years ago.But then, they always blame America first.

Kirkpatrick's truthful declaration was not the only instance of the Dark Arts in Dallas that year.  At a prayer breakfast on the morning of his acceptance speech, Reagan told 17,000 Texans about the absurdity of how, thanks to liberal judges

we passed a special law in the Congress just a few weeks ago to allow student prayer groups the same access to schoolrooms after classes that a young Marxist society, for example, would already enjoy with no opposition.

Finally, in an election that also saw the greatest postive ad of all time, Reagan's Bear in the Woods ad was one of the greatest examples of electoral fearmongering I've ever seen.

Moving along to 1988, it's worth noting that most of the hits on Dukakis were self inflicted.  No one told Dukakis to call himself a card carrying member of the ACLU, not care about his wife getting raped and killed, or ride around looking like a doofus in that tank.  That said, it's time to discuss Willie Horton.

One of the great myths of modern politics is that the Willie Horton ad was somehow racist.  It wasn't racist, it was about crime and Dukakis' record on that topic.  It's true that Horton was a convicted murderer.  It's true that Dukakis furloughed him 10 times.  It's true that Horton assaulted two innocent people.  It's also true that that ad would have been just as effective had Willie Horton looked like this guy.  How was this not fair game?

In 2000, John McCain already had a long running fued with the Religious Right over Campaign Finance Reform.  McCain was the one who threatened to shut them down if they got in his way.  They had every right to hit back.

George W. Bush successful re-election campaign was notable to students of the Dark Arts for two reasons.  First, the swift boat veterans played an essential role in getting out the truth about John Kerry.  While some of the claims of what happened in Vietnam were disputed (and never setteled), no one can deny John Kerry's activities when he returned from Vietnam.  Given that the man lied about what American troops did in Vietnam to the U.S. Congress, isn't this something the American people have a right to know?

Finally, 2004 is notable because, more than any time since 1864, Americans had a genuine reason to feel afraid.  While Democrats like to whine about this fact, the simple fact is that who will keep you safe was a legitimate topic for a devestating ad.

So what does this all mean?

1) Opportunities for the Dark Arts arise from genuine problems.  That's why we shouldn't feel bad about using them.  To use some examples from the past 40 years:

- Why shouldn't people be afraid of rising crime?

- Why shouldn't people resent welfare recipents living off their taxes while they struggle to get by?

- If some liberal judge wants to make them get their kids up an hour early so they can get bused to some far off school, why should they accept it?

- If a sitting Governor gives some convicted felon a weekend furlough, why shouldn't said Governor be held accountable?  Why is that racist?

- If a sitting senator votes against a critical homeland security measure, shouldn't he get called on it?

 

2) The left is the aggressor in the culture wars.  They're the ones who want to take God out of the public square.  They're the ones who want six year olds to attend gay weddings.  They're the ones proposing taxpayer subsidized abortion.  Why should we feel bad about fighting back?  The tactics the left hates so much basically involves us calling them out on who they really are and telling the public what they really want to do.  What's wrong with that?

 

3) George W. Bush's Anti-Terrorist policies have worked.  In the next year, Obama will face politically difficult decisions regarding Patriot Act renewal, Guantanamo Bay, and surging in Afghanistan.  If Obama continues Bush's policies, we should quietly work with him to give him the votes he needs in Congress while letting him take the heat from his base.  On the other hand, if he chooses to discontinue any of these vital policies, we should come at him with everything we've got.  If this happens, there should be no hesitation to point out that "Barack Obama does not care about Americans' safety.  It's too soon to tell how this will play out, but we should be prepared for either possibility.

 

4) We really do love America more than they do.  I know it's not politically correct to say, but after 9/11 conservatives did this while liberals did this.  A couple weeks ago Joel Stein (of all people) penned this amazingly perceptive and surprisingly honest column.  Stein admits:

Conservatives feel personally blessed to have been born in the only country worth living in. I, on the other hand, just feel lucky to have grown up in a wealthy democracy. If it had been Australia, Britain, Ireland, Canada, Italy, Spain, France, Luxembourg, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Japan, Israel or one of those Scandinavian countries with more relaxed attitudes toward sex, that would have been fine with me too.

While his statement about sex was particularly pompus and obnoxious, this entire paragraph (and column) is revealing.  Liberals don't wear articles of clothing with American Flags; Conservatives do.

On a similar note, I would never have had my kids baptized by this guy.  I would never work with this guy on education.  That's why Michelle Bachman is my hero.

Ok, I've said a mouthful.  Comments on this one should be interesting.

Thoughts/Suggestions???

Profiles in Lacking Courage

Podcast Show Notes 

Obama called for a lack of political courage by a Congressman campaigning for him. (Hat Tip: Don Surber.)

Former Obama speech writer endorsing McCain receives death threats. (Hat Tip: Dawn Patrol.)

A whistleblower tells the truth about the Democrats unprecedented malfeasance for security in online donations.

2,200 people registered vote in both Florida and Allen County, Indiana. (Hat Tip: Red State.)

Another case of out of state voting Fraud in Ohio. (Hat Tip: Red State.)

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Into The Heart Of Darkness, Part 1

Senator Barack Obama has captured the world's attention unlike almost any other political figure of the era in which we live.  However, despite all the theatrics surrounding the candidate and the almost messianic adoration displayed on the part of his followers, very few can possibly tell you what he actually believes other than in "change", which, though sounding like everything you ever dreamed of, can actually consist of the stuff of nightmares.

Discerning Americans caught an early glimpse of what was beneath the facade of intoxicating rhetoric when it became more widely disseminated what Obama's spiritual mentor Jeremiah Wright actually believed and what Obama had to have soaked up philosophically during the formative years of his early adulthood.  Devoted acolytes will respond that his holiness has distanced himself from such racialism.

David Duke made similar claims during the early to mid 90's until falling back into similar patterns of extremist thought.  So if few believed Duke back then, why should we extend the benefit of the doubt to Obama now since a leopard seldom changes its spots?

Before the Jeremiah Wright incident, many White Christians felt considerable guilt over the constant harangue invoked by the more liberal among the clergy about 11 o'clock Sunday morning being the most segregated hour of the week.  However, with the exposure of the disease of Black liberation theology eating away at the heart of many Black churches, it has turned out that any sincere Christian irrespective of their ethnic background ought to be cautious about entering these "synagogues of Satan" as Scripture itself calls such hovels of doctrinal compromise.

By more closely examining what liberation theologians actually expound and what is mediated to the broader public by politicians such as Barack Obama, one realizes that the threat posed by this pseudo-messiah and false prophet goes much deeper than the lamentable historical animosities between the races.  And even though this animosity against what this great country was built upon goes much deeper than race and ethnicity, it is the jumping off point into the radical circles in which Obama is being heralded as an almost messianic figure.

Many Americans of goodwill no doubt think Jeremiah Wright and his warped theology are a rare aberration on the American religious radar screen.  His kind of outlook is actually more widespread than one might actually think.

To many of the influential in Black ecclesiastical circles, the problem was not so much with what Jeremiah Wright said but rather that Whitey found out a bit about what was being planned for him among those whose ultimate loyalty is not to the God of the universe and His revealed word but instead to race as a manifestation of the COMMUNITY.  Most American Christians steeped in commonsense and the truths of the Bible would consider the things espoused by Jeremiah Wright beyond the bounds of propriety; however, the assessment of liberals is considerably different.

According to an article in the 5/5/08 edition of The Nation titled "The Liberation Of Reverend Wright" by Eudora Smith, Wright's elocutionary peeks such as "God damn America" represent the "rhetorical traditions [that] meld biblical allegory with contemporary political concerns and whose sanctuaries provide a rare space where a collective black racial consciousness can be expressed uncensored by others."  I don't remember Italians being referred to as long-nosed garlic eaters as part of the Biblical literary heritage.  Eudora Smith continues, "It may surprise many in white America...that there are a lot of Jeremiah Wrights out there..."

Perhaps even more frightening than that there is a kook like Jeremiah Wright espousing the kinds of things that he does is that there are so many that believe as he does or look to him as an honorable man of God.  Many simply excuse Wrights preaching, according to an MSNBC.com article titled "NYT: Black Churches In NC Torn Over Wright" as "a prophetic style that combines spiritual guidance with often harsh social criticism that has its roots in Old Testament prophets."

The reflections of a number of Wright's supporters are documented in a 5/11/08 Baltimore Sun article titled "Black Preachers Agree To Disagree."  However, from the article, the disagreement is not so much with Wright's message but that the world found out about it before their pony Obama won the horse race and it would have been to late for America to do anything about it until the next election.

Rev. Johnny Golden of New Unity Ministries told the Baltimore Sun, "We see a lot of what he is saying and we understand it, but his comments have wounded the opportunity of Mr. Obama to make gains and opportunity for America to embrace his ideals."

Rev. Marshall Prentice of Zion Baptist Church went even further in his support for Wright when he told the Baltimore Sun, "To attack any pastor for what he says from the pulpit is an attack on all pastors.  Whatever we say on a given Sunday, we truly believe is given to us by inspiration of God."

Oh really?  There is a cultic movement known as Christian Identity that is essentially a religious form of Nazism; if someone claims to be a pastor within that pernicious sect and disseminates their poison from behind a pulpit, by the standard advocated in the previous quote, are we as mere laymen permitted to speak out against such error?

Protestantism broke with Roman Catholicism largely in part over the realization that clergy are not infallible and that there must be an objective standard that exists above the mere opinions of man even if we as finite individuals do not yet understand the entirety of the divine plumline.  However, leftist denominations such as the United Church of Christ of which Wright is a part hold that Scripture is no more a definitive rule of faith and practice than any other piece of religious literature.  So when clergy speak to matters beyond and that even blatantly contradict revelation’s scope, why should the Christian in the pew have to defer to someone just because they wear a clerical collar?

Such nonsense may be rife within denominations dominated by African American religionists.  Yet as a group largely Protestant in orientation, one ought to expect rigorous pastors and theologians to protect Evangelicalism against such doctrinal toxins as expounded by the likes of Jeremiah Wright.  However, the same spirit of relativism and timidity infecting the rest of our culture now paralyzes some of Evangelicalism’s foremost institutions simply because the heretic making the claims happens to be an ethnic minority.

Christianity Today was initially founded as a conservative alternative to more liberal religious periodicals such as Christian Century and Sojourners.  If that is the case, its founder Carl Henry must be rolling over in his grave.

Eager to achieve the appellation of “relevant” as did the Social Gospel and Death of God movements from previous generations, insecure Evangelicals are quick to latch onto any intellectual fad that comes along (especially if it happens to be anti-American as of late).  And since all things Obama are all the rage, the editors of Christianity Today can’t help but get on the bandwagon by posting sympathetic viewpoints.

According to the article titled “Jeremiah Wright, Evangelicals’ Brother In Christ”, the disputed pastor is no worse than John Hagee and ought to be accepted as one of our own.  But what exactly does Jeremiah Wright believe?  Shouldn’t we examine this before we extend him unreservedly the hand of fellowship?

The theology espoused by Jeremiah Wright is known as “Black liberation theology”.  However, there is more to this than Black people wanting to go to church predominately with other Black people.  Even those who painstakingly go out of their way to avoid making distinctions between right and wrong are forced to admit there was something profoundly incorrect going on at Wright’s church.

According to the 5/12/08 edition of Newsweek, Oprah Winfrey use to be a member of Wright’s church not so much out of theological conviction but rather because she simply wanted to go to a Black church.  Before we return to the primary thrust of this analysis, that admission is of such significance that it needs to be examined a bit further as it expresses a mindset relevant to this essay.

If a Black person wants to make being around other Black people their highest priority even above fidelity to God Himself, liberals and multiculturalists don’t have a problem with it.  However, if White folks are reluctant to go back to Black churches not so much because of anything against Black people per say but because what rational White person is going to want to sit week after week hearing sermons that do not exposit the Word of God for our daily lives but rather how wretched White people.  And furthermore quite frankly, in many Black churches, the congregation can’t simply sing in the pews but must also jump over them and roll around in the aisles.

For refusing to patronize such ecclesiastical confusion, we get lengthy lectures how we are all one big human family.  But even in families, don’t siblings enjoy different ways of relating to their father?  One might enjoy going with him to the duck pond while the other prefers taking him to car shows; does there really need to be all that much hand-ringing about these things being enjoyed separately?

Since Oprah Winfrey ultimately worships Oprah Winfrey (a claim backed by her embrace of Eckart Tolle), Oprah realized her own deification among the masses of ignorant feminists with too much money would be at stake if she bent her knee to a false god other than herself.  So she parted.

There is more to Black liberation theology than looking to Christ to free individuals from their sins.  In fact, a traditional Jesus plays a very small role in this worldview and the individual is valued even less as one is only important as part of the larger group or COMMUNITY.

John 3:16 tells us, “For God so loved the world, that He gave us His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”  However, to Black liberationists, this most fundamental of Gospel Scriptures contains nothing but error.

According to a WorldNetDaily.com story titled "Christians Copy Christ Killers Says Obama's Pastor's Magazine", Jesus doesn't really love the little children, not the Red, nor the Yellow, and  the White ones especially aren't really so precious in His site after all.  According to theologians subscribing to this school of thought such as Jeremiah Wright and James Cone, Jesus came only for Black people.

Cone is quoted as saying in the WorldNetDaily article, "The black theologian must reject any conception of God which stifles black self determination by picturing God as the God of all peoples.  Either God is identified with the oppressed to the point that their experience becomes God's experience, or God is a God of racism."

Thus, one is a racist if one DOES NOT show preferential treatment towards Black people.  It must be noted that this is not the only kind of double standard advocated by those in Jeremiah Wright's circles.

In orthodox Christian theology, since all races and ethnic groups are equal ontologically or biologically even if the ways certain cultures manifest themselves are better than others, particular standards and expectations can be applied to individuals irrespective of their background.  However, if one follows the thought of Jeremiah Wright to its logical conclusion, then Black folks should not have to adhere to so-called "White man's law".

In his remarks before a 2008 NAACP anniversary dinner, Jeremiah Wright contended that European-American children are "left-brained" in that they are logical and analytical whereas African-American children are "right-brained" making them creative and intuitive. On the surface, such theorizing does not really sound like all that big of a deal as often different ethnic groups tend to excel at specific things.  But one must ask the question what will this alleged bit of scholarship be invoked to justify in terms of public policy.

Wright quips in his NAACP remarks, "When they [public schools] were desegregated in Philadelphia, several of the white teachers in my school freaked out.  Why?  Because black kids wouldn't stay in their place.  Over there behind the desk, black kids climbed up all on them."

In other words, since their brains process information differently, it is unacceptable to expect Black people to abide by the same set of expectations White folks are expected to adhere to.  Why, how dare you expect order in the hallways of America's inner city public schools!!!  You're a racist if you expect Black children to sit there and conduct themselves in a disciplined and studious manner.

Think I am exaggerating?  Both the American Enterprise and Washington Post Magazines have run stories in the past where White teachers were categorized as racist for not having a big smile plastered across their faces about minority children labeled as learning disabled rampaging as they wished in the classrooms of these respective teachers.

Where does this line of reasoning end?  If it is discovered that Blacks have a more difficult time curtailing the compulsions driving one towards reproduction, does that mean we are just suppose to keep handing out the welfare checks and Food Stamps without nary a word of rebuke about the moral decay gripping our nation where the unmarried don’t simply have one child outside of marriage and learn from their mistake but irresponsibly continue having one child after the other without a trip to the altar?

If it is proved that the “Black brain” has a greater propensity towards violence, does that mean we may not condemn the warlike conditions plaguing our city streets?  If one takes Black liberation theology to its logical conclusion, even if Jeremiah Wright won’t admit to it publicly, according to this warped worldview it might not even be wrong to put a bullet in Whitey’s head and take his property; some might even call it an act of love or (as Jeremiah Wright said in his NAACP remarks) “just different”.

In the history of Communism, Marx is remembered as the thinker providing much of that philosophy’s theoretical basis whereas Lenin was the politician who implemented these doctrines into an actual political situation with slight adaptations.  Likewise, Jeremiah Wright contributes significantly to the ideological foundation that Barack Obama would build upon whether the candidate is willing to admit to it or not.

by Frederick Meekins

Barack Obama's Greatest Hits

Barack Obama takes center stage in Denver tonight to accept the Democratic Party's presidential nomination. That makes today a great time to reflect on what Obama's campaign of hope and change hath wrought.

So here, for your viewing pleasure, is a compilation of Obama's greatest rhetorical hits from the past 19 months. I've limited this special package to 10 tracks and five minutes, but there surely are more that could have been included. Share your favorites in the comments.

The 10 tracks from this collection are:

1. Farewell To Arms -- Obama's plan to dismantle U.S. defenses
2. Loveable Rogues -- An open invitation for talks with global thugs
3. Bomb Iran -- Maybe, depending on what day you ask
4. Baby Be Gone -- No one wants to be "punished" with babies
5. Workin' 9 to 5 -- Tough questions are "above my pay grade"
6. The Gospel Of Barack -- The gay marriage Sermon on the Mount
7. Take The Race Bait -- Typical dollar bills ... and white people
8. Bitter -- The guns 'n Bibles crowd
9. Jeremiah Was An Albatross -- Tossed under the bus with Grandma
10. A Gaffe A Minute -- Fallen heroes in the 57 states of America.
 

He offers a pound of silver...

Today Obama continued his alleged "move to the center". He travelled to conservative Zanesville, OH and endorsed an expansion of "faith-based initiatives"

http://www.usatoday.com/news/politics/election2008/2008-07-01-obama-faith_N.htm?csp=34

Evidently, Senator Obama thinks that voters of faith will be easily impressed by treating them like just another special interest group that can readily be bought off with a dollop of new pork barrel spending. 

They ought to ignore that Obama called opponents of gay marriage "divisive and discriminatory"----a group which includes 67% of the voters in the very community Obama spoke in today http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2004//pages/results/states/OH/I/01/county.002.html

They ought to ignore that Obama has repeatedly supported partial birth abortion http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2008/apr/08042805.html and called restictring  this practice "part of a concerted effort to roll back the hard-won rights of American women.". Perhaps Obama will throw himself under the bus when his reaction to last year's Supreme Court ruling uphold a ban on this practice resurfaces.

I strongly disagree with today's Supreme Court ruling, which dramatically departs from previous precedents safeguarding the health of pregnant women.  As Justice Ginsburg emphasized in her dissenting opinion, this ruling signals an alarming willingness on the part of the conservative majority to disregard its prior rulings respecting a woman's medical concerns and the very personal decisions between a doctor and patient.  http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2007/apr/07041902.html

Last time I checked, one thing evangelical Protestants, Catholics and Mormons agreed on was not supporting liberal abortion laws. Perhaps Obama wants to see how committed they are to this cause.

No, what Obama thinks they should be interested in is whether they can reach out for some new federal grants to advance their local initiatives.

Sadly, I doubt very much an Obama presidential adminstration will allow dime one to be spent for housing pregnant women who want to carry their child to birth, or to advance abstinence education in the schools.  And don't think this money is going to get out to any suburban parish or megachurch. Naw, this is the shotgun marriage of the New Deal and the New Testament.  

The primary recipient of Barack's FaithBucks program will undoubtedly be politically active urban megachurches of the Christian Left......now where have we heard of about places like this??? http://www.tucc.org/ 

Yep, we'll see millions of taxpayer dollars diverted into voter turnout drives and lobbying efforts to increase federally funded social programs--- all so a new generation of "community organizers" can follow in the Great One's footsteps  http://www.usnews.com/usnews/news/articles/070826/3obama.htm, all with gobs of cash courtesy of your 1040 form.

Senator Obama . is, once again, subdued and humble about his goals for this new federal entitlement program 

" I wouldn't be fulfilling God's will unless I went out and did the Lord's work," he said.

As a child in Brooklyn the nuns taught me never to take the Lord's name in vain. Wherever Barack Obama attended school at age 7, evidently this wasn't on the lesson plan.

Thank You Father Pfleger

Cross-Posted at Illinois Conservative

If America is spared the devastating effects of a socialist administration presided over by Barack Obama we have the Trinity United Church of Christ to thank.  By now, unless you’ve been on an extended vacation off the planet, you have probably heard and seen the video clip of Father Pfleger’s Sunday morning sermon at Obama’s church often enough to have memorized the content.  

For those who may not be familiar with Father Pfleger, he is a long time social activist and Catholic Priest, and close friend of Louis Farrakhan, Jeremiah Wright and Barack Obama.  He has been Pastor of Saint Sabina Church on Chicago’s south side since 1981.  The Archdiocese has attempted several times to transfer him to other parishes, as is the custom in the Catholic Church.  Each time, he has been able to organize protests by his parishioners resulting in the Cardinal setting aside Church policy and allowing him to stay on at St. Sabina.

In many ways his career has been more entwined with the career of Barack Obama than Jeremiah Wright’s has.  He worked closely with Obama when Obama was a community organizer in Chicago and they have maintained the relationship ever since.  Pfleger has contributed to Obama’s campaigns and Obama has directed “earmarks” to his church programs for years.  Between 1995 and 2001 Pfleger contributed a total of $1500 to Obama’s various campaigns.  In January 2001 Obama announced $225,000 in state grants to St. Sabina projects.

As a guest speaker at Trinity United Church of Christ on Sunday, Rev. Pfleger ridiculed Senator Hillary Clinton, accusing her of feeling entitled to the Presidency because she was “Bill’s” wife and because she was white.  In a performance reminiscence of a “Saturday Night Live” comedy skit, he mimicked Hillary’s tearful response to a supporter’s question at a campaign rally, saying, “"When Hillary was crying, and people said that was put on, I really don't believe it was put on, I really believe that she just always thought this is mine. I'm Bill's wife, I'm white and this is mine…”

In the aftermath of Pfleger’s sermon Obama supporters have been scrambling to moderate the effects on Obama’s campaign.  From accusations of “guilt by association” to drawing a moral equivalency to McCain’s support from Pastor Hagee, they are regurgitating all the excuses used to explain away Obama’s twenty years as a member of Jeremiah Wright’s church.  This episode, however, is more problematic for Obama than any of the others for a number of reasons.

Using a candidate’s religious views or the theological doctrines of a candidate’s church as fodder in a negative political campaign is a dangerous precedent.  So are “cherry-picking” statements from a pastor’s sermons when those statements are based on theology, whether or not they are politically correct by today’s community standards.  If the practice of demanding that a candidate disassociate himself from any pastor or church where politically incorrect language has ever been used in a sermon, it will eventually be impossible for anyone who regularly practices their religion to run for public office.

Catholics, Protestants, Jews, Hindus, Moslems, Buddhists or any other religious group have many doctrines that, when enunciated from the pulpit, could be considered offensive to those outside that religious belief.  Attempting to apply politically correct standards to religious thought is detrimental, not only to the religion involved but to society at large.  Furthermore, when you prevent someone from speaking their mind by political correctness, it is not only contradictory to the American principle of freedom of speech; it also prevents an accurate understanding of other peoples’ true character.

Jeremiah Wright and Michael Pfleger are perfect examples of this point.  Had they not been exercising their freedom of speech or if they had been careful to speak only in politically correct terms we would have no knowledge of their true beliefs.  Having said that let me point out that the sermons under consideration are not theological.  Instead, they are racist and political with little or no valid theological content, unlike those by Hagee and Falwell used as a moral equivalent by Obama supporters.  As unpleasant and ill advised as the statements by Hagee and Falwell may be, they are grounded in the theological doctrine of God’s sovereignty over the affairs of man and nature.  Those by Wright and Pfleger are grounded in racial hatred and a hatred for the American culture and social structure.

It is their right to believe whatever they choose and to share that belief with anyone who chooses to listen.  In fact, I am grateful they shared them with the world.  Now we know where we stand with them and can react accordingly.  In addition, their sermons give us an insight into the character of the man many would like to see as President of the United States.  You might ask, how can that be, since he was not even present and has denounced the offensive remarks by both Wright and Pfleger?

At this point the politically correct comment would be “I’m sure Obama does not agree with their views”.  This is the accepted caveat used by almost all commentators, columnist and talking heads in the media.  The truthful comment, at least for me, is “I’m sure he does agree with the worldviews expressed by these preachers“.

The worldview expressed in their sermons is the motivating factor that underlies the profession of community organizing of which Obama often boasts.   It is the belief that members of a community are victimized by unjust actions and oppression by those in power that forms the basis for community organizing efforts.  It is also compatible with the socialist’s worldview of what they believe to be the universal injustices in the capitalist system.

Furthermore, the enthusiastic reaction from the congregation to Pfleger’s sermon, so evident in the video, indicates this type of message is not unusual for this particular church but rather is the expected fare.  Obama’s twenty-year membership and his continued loyalty to the church should be proof positive to any unbiased observer that he is in agreement with its views.  It does not matter what he says or does at this point.  The opportunity to disassociate himself from Wright and the Church has passed long ago for anyone who is truly concerned.

These latest revelations may affect Obama’s chances in the general election but they are not likely to prevent him from becoming the Democratic nominee.  I heard someone today opine that the Democratic Party’s rules committee meeting this weekend would probably switch their support from Obama to Clinton in response to the growing controversy.  That is not likely.  The socialist dominated base and leadership of the Democratic Party has invested too much time and money in the Obama candidacy to change course now.

This is just the type of bombshell Hillary has been waiting for and it could supply her with the incentive to keep her candidacy alive until the convention.  Whether it will do any good or not remains to be seen.  Obama has been groomed and promoted by the leadership of the socialist movement for most of his adult life for just this moment, and they are not likely to pass up the opportunity to usher in a socialist era in America with his election.

 

If after the Denver convention Obama is still their candidate we will know for sure the Democratic Party is really the Democratic Socialist Party.  If he is elected President in November, we will know the American people are ready for a democratic socialist government.  If he is rejected by the voters we should all be thankful to Unity Church, Jeremiah Wright and Michael Pfleger for waking up the American people.  

 

 

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