Contrary to Claims, Obama Very Close With Racist Preacher, Wright
By: Warner Todd Huston
Many in the newsmedia are reacting with quite restraint to the revelations of comments by Obam’s racist “spiritual mentor,” Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Jr. Imagine if this were a Republican politician linked to such outrageous talk and you’ll realize how the MSM has been studiously underplaying this controversy. A benefit of the doubt seems to be the rule of thumb for how the media is treating Obama, a benefit that would be denied a GOP candidate.
But, as ABC’s Jake Tapper asked concerning Obama’s knowledge of Wright’s racist rants: What did Obama know and when did he know it? In this posting Tapper finds that Obama was distancing himself from Wright a year ago causing the question to be raised if Obama long ago wondered if Wright would be a liability? But, there is video of Obama lovingly introducing Wright even after that proving not only that Obama is very, very close to Rev. Wright, but also that he was not distancing himself from the man at all.
On June 5th, 2007, Senator Barack Obama spoke before 8,000 people gathered in Hampton University’s Convocation Center. Most of them were pastors and ministers attending a conference there.
He was there to speak on mostly post Katrina issues and to criticize the Bush administration’s efforts during that natural disaster. Obama tried his catch phrase of the moment, saying that a “quiet riot” might be occurring in America and he affirmed that he felt that America was a racist nation, that the reaction to Katrina had just “pulled back the screen” on America’s racism. Obama also used rhetoric heavily doused with religious symbolism.
But, that boiler plate aside, there was two very interesting segments in Obama’s remarks concerning his racist “spiritual mentor,” Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Jr. that are not getting the press it deserves. (See the video at Channel 2 News Chicago)
He was effusive in his praise and admiration for Wright, this foaming at the mouth, hate monger. This runs contrary to his late claims that he is somehow shocked by Wright’s racism, or that he now disagrees with him as well as his claim that he was not familiar enough with Wright to know of his point of view.
As the speech kicked off (at 1:07 into the video), Obama introduced the Rev. Wright to the audience with these glowing and highly personal words:
And then I’ve got to give a special shout out to my Pastor. The guy who puts up with me, counsels me, listens to my wife complain about me. He’s a friend and a great leader not just in Chicago but all across the country, so please everybody give an extraordinary welcome to my pastor Dr. Jeremiah Wright, Jr., Trinity United Church of Christ.
Where’s he at? There he is. That’s him, that’s him right there.
You wearing a suit today, right?
This reveals a very intimate portrait of Obama and Wright’s relationship. Notice the last bit where Obama jokes about Wright’s penchant for wearing an Afrocentric style of dress and that his wearing of a suit at that event was uncommon. These are the remarks of a close friend to another loved intimate, not the words of a man making perfunctory comments.
Later in his comments Obama mentioned Wright again. (At 13:43 in the video)
You know, I’ve been on a journey trying to get at the truth that question for a long time. I mention Rev. Wright… I first met Rev. Wright when I moved to Chicago after college.
And that’s where I met Rev. Wright and started going to Trinity United Church of Christ and he helped me on another journey and introduced me to someone named Jesus Christ. And I learned that my sins could be redeemed. I learned that those things that I was too weak to accomplish myself, maybe he could accomplish them for me if I placed my trust in him. And I learned that ordinary people can achieve extraordinary things when they believe in him and they come together and are guided by him.
So, we see that Obama obviously had a close, long-term relationship with Wright not a casual one where Obama might have missed the Reverendâ€™s long-standing agenda.
It is also interesting that Obama’s rhetoric was so steeped in evangelical Christian rhetoric. Isn’t a â€œfanaticâ€ Christianity one of the charges so often leveled by the left against president Bush? Donâ€™t they so often say that he is somehow too religious? And, how often did we hear from the MSM how â€œcontroversialâ€ Bush (or any Republican) was for delivering a speech before Bob Jones University?
And remember, Bush just went to make a single speech at Bob Jones University and the media slammed him for months afterward. Yet, Barack has had an intimate, 20-year relationship with Wright who has vehemently called for God to damn America and the media yawns at the news.
In light of the criticism of Bushâ€™s injecting â€œtoo much religionâ€ in his presidency or that his administration is just like a â€Christian Talibanâ€, it is also a legitimate question to ask, where are those same accusers when this 2007 speech by Barack Obama is so filled with religious fervor? Where are the anti-religious left and the so-called separation of Church and Staters at now?
In fact, this entire speech is filled with nothing but class warfare, expansions of social programs, raising the minimum wage, typical great society type junk all couched squarely as a civic responsibility enmeshed with Obama’s view of Biblical precepts.
Now, as far as what Obama knew of Rev. Wright’s racist comments and when he knew it, ABC’s Jake Tapper is right on when he notes that Obama had dis-invited Wright from delivering the public invocation at his candidacy announcement more than a year ago. This obviously reveals that Obama had begun to distance himself from Wright before he announced formally for the presidency. It is plain that Obama knew of Wright’s problematic ranting long before his sudden claim that he is shocked by Wright’s past rhetoric.
Unfortunately for the truth, when the questions were finally put to him on March 14th, Obama played dumb saying, “I wasn’t in church during the time that these statement were made. I did not hear such incendiary language myself, personally. Either in conversations with him or when I was in the pew, he always preached the social gospel. … If I had heard them repeated, I would have quit. … If I thought that was the repeated tenor of the church, then I wouldnâ€™t feel comfortable there.”
Even back in April of 2007 The New York Times quoted Wright that he’d already talked with Barack about his controversial relationship with the ranting Reverend.
“If Barack gets past the primary, he might have to publicly distance himself from me,” Mr. Wright said with a shrug. “I said it to Barack personally, and he said yeah, that might have to happen.”
This fully reveals that Wright understands that his views are controversial, that Barack was fully aware of them, and that they are both complicit in trying to cover up these facts in order to fool people into a false perception of the truth.
But, as the video from Chicagoâ€™s Channel 2 shows that, until recently, Obama never did fully separate himself from Rev. Wright.
With all the proof of how Barack Obama has been so close to the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Jr. for the last 20 years, it stretches credulity to imagine that Obama never heard of Wright’s hatespeech before. And as Wright blames whites for all the ills of the black community, while Wright claims that America deserved 9/11 and that whites created AIDS to kill blacks, Obama has the gall to claim that itâ€™s everyone else stirring the racial rhetoric.
Watch this speech by Obama and see who is stirring the racial rhetoric. During his own campaign, Obama has cleaned up Wright’s racist hate but make no mistake that the message that Wright has so often bellowed from the pulpit is nearly identical to Obamaâ€™s on the campaign trail. Obama has learned well from Rev. Wright. Heâ€™s learned well, indeed.
The conservative blogosphere is aflame with Obamaâ€™s links to Wright. But the biggest question is: will the Mainstream Media let this controversy die, will they decide itâ€™s â€œold newsâ€ like they do so very often, or will they pursue it, connecting the dots, like they should?
What do you think?