Faith and Politics

I am writing this diary in response to a question posed by a reader here about whether there are Obama supporters who disagree with the rhetoric and tone of the clips going around of Rev. Wright.

I support and continue to support Barack Obama, and I do disagree with the rhetoric and the tone expressed in those clips.

I think there's a danger that people will get a false impression of Senator Obama's political views and his private faith life from them.

Let me explain...

Wright doesn't speak for me and he does not speak for Obama. In my view, he is a minster speaking at a church. That's an important point in American politics.

Now, yes, I do think his use of this kind of rhetoric during a campaign season has a real potential to hurt a man he clearly supports and loves and also to be fundamentally misunderstood.

That being said, I'm not going to "denounce" Wright or demand that Obama do so, but I am going to stand as an Obama supporter stating disagreement with some of Wright's rhetoric and views.

What I'd like to share here is that I grew up in a multi-racial community, close neighbors of mine went to African-American Churches and, though I'm white and I'm Catholic, we would visit sometimes. 99% of the preaching was about Jesus and Holy scripture. That gets lost in these selected, edited, inflammatory video clips, and that's a shame.

In my experience, African American Christian Churches talk about Jesus from the point of view of the African American experience of history. That's how it has been, over a long and complex history, for almost 400 years.

I studied African American history with Eric Foner at Columbia University. He was quite clear. The role of the African American Church during slavery and segregation was profound. It was the only safe place, the only safe harbor, for Blacks to talk and share fellowship as African Americans. That tradition, of speech, of music, of rhetoric is a part of all of our heritage as Americans. And it's an old part. It goes way back. I think most Americans don't realize how much of our culture is influenced by Black Churches. But it is.

There's nothing "shocking" about a Black preacher talking about racism in a predominantly African American church unless you choose to make it shocking. The more you watch that video, in fact, the less shocking that video gets. Though there are still parts I disagree with and find hurtful and counter productive.

Personally, when someone comes to me and tries to take the words of a pastor talking in a sermon and make them out to be damning of a candidate and a campaign. I have to step back a bit.

We could do the exact same thing with so many preachers and religions. To sow fear. To foment resentment. People did this to Mitt Romeny on his Mormonism. People did this to JFK and Al Smith on their Catholicism. People routinely use this kind of bigotry against Jews and Muslims. Fact is, this nation and its media may well find it easier to accept Episcopalian or Presbyterian faith in a president because our presidents have often professed those views. But would YouTube clips of the most edited and extreme moments of certain Methodist preachers or Baptist preachers or Catholic priests be "comfortable" for everyone in the U.S.A.? No, of course not. That's why we have freedom of religion and the separation of Church and State.

What I'm saying is that preachers saying things that would not come off well on YouTube should not be a surprising thing given our American Tradition. Most pastors are going to be saying things that are matters of faith and culture and don't work well in our public political discourse.

Yes, I am not a fan of Rev. Wright's rhetoric in this instance because I think, as it comes off in these clips, it has the danger of conveying a message directly opposite to that of the Obama campaign and how Obama's book...the Audacity of Hope...characterized Barack and Michelle's deep and abiding faith in Jesus Christ and the moral values that entails. It also is a horrible way for people to be introduced to Rev. Wright and that congregation.

But, yes, Barack Obama is African American and a Christian. He and his wife attend a predominantly African American church where preachers do talk about Jesus in the context of racism and African American identity and history. If you make YouTube clips of some of those sermons there will be things that some people will find uncomfortable or even divisive. And perhaps rightly so.

However, I think we should judge a candidate in America by what they say in public and what they do. That's our political tradition in regards to religion and religious faith.

Barack Obama's overarching message has been about what we can do when we come together to work on the problems that face us as Americans, about what brings us together and not what tears us apart.

That's why I support and continue to support him, even as I state that I'm not a fan of the tone of this rhetoric from Rev. Wright.

Hopefully, you can understand the level of personal effort I made in this diary, and respect my views even if you disagree with my choice of candidate.

Tags: faith, obama supporters are so many easily duped drones, Obamabot, Politics, Troll Diary (all tags)



Great Diary, Kid Oakland

I'm glad you gave this some thought - did you get a chance to see Cone?

by CardBoard 2008-03-13 01:01PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

Good diary k/o.

by Steve M 2008-03-13 01:05PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

Once you are running for presidents your associations are going to be scrutinized whether you like it or not .

Look I live in Tennessee and I understand the whole thing , but frankly if you hear that kind of talk you walk away .

America is KKK .

Thats just disturbing.

Pride in country is very important to me and I would never be part of a church like that certainly not for 19 years .

I won't call him my old uncle who sometimes say things i don't like.

by lori 2008-03-13 01:09PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

Thanks for the lesson.

Obama needs to be a teacher on this issue. It's not fair but he has to be the one to give context to what they are seeing on youtube. Otherwise it will be distorted used against him. People fear what they don't understand.

by JoeCoaster 2008-03-13 01:11PM | 0 recs
If you make a youtube clip of

everything that Geraldine Ferraro says, then for sure you can find one or two things that are objectionable in it.

In fact, if you make a youtube of everything that anyone says (even Gandhi, perhaps), then for sure you can find one or two things that are objectinable in it.  

And yes, if you watched it over and over again, it would appear less shocking.

What is your point ?  That we should not cherry pick objectionable statements ??

by SevenStrings 2008-03-13 01:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

I guess the problem is that Obama supporters and the Obama campaign have not given Hillary Clinton even the tiniest benefit of any doubt this campaign. They've taken things said by people not even affiliated with her campaign, twisted them completely out of context, and used them to call her a racist or a race-baiter.

I don't particularly care what Wright has to say, though I find much of it deplorable. I trust Obama enough to think his own viewpoints are reasonable ones.

But no such reciprocity has even been shown to Hillary Clinton. So no, I don't believe that Obama agrees with the words of his pastor and spiritual adviser. But are you willing to give equal treatment to Hillary Clinton?

by OrangeFur 2008-03-13 01:17PM | 0 recs
I've already said that

I thought Olbermann was over the top.

Ferraro feels she has to defend herself as "not a racist" and the discussion goes in circles. Many Democrats heard and disagreed with our former Vice Presidential nominee. They heard a racial appeal in her tone and found it offensive. Olbermann was right that the Clinton response was lacking but I think he took it a bit too far for my taste. He could have let off the pedal about 60% in my view.

I think all of this just distracts us from what we should be talking about as Democrats; Senator Clinton's betrayal of her own party.

Hillary Clinton has for weeks, repeatedly suggested that John McCain would be a better President than Barack Obama. That is unprecedented and significant.

This despite the fact that both Senator Clinton and Senator McCain voted to give George Bush authority to invade Iraq in 2002 and voted in favor of the Lieberman/Kyl amendment in 2007 as well.

The Iraq war vote represents a profound difference in views. It is one of the reasons Senator Clinton has not run well in the upper midwest and mountain west and along the Mississippi.

Barack Obama has been put in the unenviable position of an unscrupulous Clinton campaign attacking him from the right within his own party while McCain and the FOX driven media attack from the outside.

There's something wrong when one of the Democratic candidates allies themselves with the GOP.

by kid oakland 2008-03-13 01:38PM | 0 recs
Re: I've already said that

Well, you lost me once you said she was betraying the party.

But it wasn't just Keith Olbermann. The Obama campaign has been microanalyzing and parsing and pushing the flames of race ever since New Hampshire.

Obama deserves some leniency on this because everyone would deserve some leniency on this. But it's not the same leniency he's shown towards Hillary Clinton.

by OrangeFur 2008-03-13 01:41PM | 0 recs
Re: I've already said that

Bullshit.  The Obama campaign gets absolutely zero benefit from race being a factor in this election.

by Brillobreaks 2008-03-13 01:48PM | 0 recs
Re: I've already said that

Give it a rest, Kid. Your screed is more accurate substituting CLINTON in the blanks.

HILLARY CLINTON has been put in the unenviable position of an unscrupulous OBama campaign attacking her from the left within her own party while McCain and the FOX driven media attack from the outside.

by KnowVox 2008-03-13 01:45PM | 0 recs
They heard a racial appeal in her tone?

was she trying to "hoodwink" and "bamboozle" the "white man"?

by John Wesley Hardin was a Friend to the Poor 2008-03-13 01:57PM | 0 recs
where were you in the Olbermann diaries?

I wasted my time doing battle in those, and I didn't see you anywhere saying Olbermann was over the top.

OrangeFur is right. Obama supporters have been so quick to brand Hillary as a racist. But there's a different standard when someone close to Obama says offensive things.

On a different topic, I read one of Eric Foner's books when I was in college. Great historian.

by desmoinesdem 2008-03-13 04:02PM | 0 recs
I don't really

go into Olbermann's diaries, that's all.

by kid oakland 2008-03-13 04:47PM | 0 recs
at some point one of the more mature

Obama supporters is going to have to rein in the mob at Daily Kos. They are getting more ridiculous every day.

by desmoinesdem 2008-03-13 05:39PM | 0 recs
Comments like this one

are where you really lose me, to be honest.


That's foul, if you ask me. And quite unfair to be saying here on another website.

by kid oakland 2008-03-13 06:23PM | 0 recs
The Black Church and Democrats.

(Reposted with some edits from a different diary.)

I really find the lack of awareness and knowledge of the Black church and community by a number of the posters here really disturbing.  

They clearly have absolutely no understanding of the Black church or it's history.  The presentation of the bible and it's teachings in racial terms is what got Blacks through slavery.  It's what got us through a century of Jim Crown and lynchings.  It's what gave birth to the civil rights movement which is responsible for so many of the improvements in our country since.

These are the kind of sermons that you hear all over the place in any of our churches that come out of that tradition.  I wouldn't be surprised at all to find that Bill and Hillary had shown up a Sunday or two to a church who's Reverend has used this kind of language.  In fact, I can pretty much guarantee it.

Sorry to burst too many bubbles, but it's not all just smiling gospel choirs singing and clapping and praising Jesus.  This is the meat behind all that fluff.  It's the meat behind our community's political will.  It's where MLK and the civil rights movement was born.  It's the reason +90% Black folks vote for Democrats each year.  And that's why the stunning ignorance on display here bothers me so much.  

This is the reason Democrats win when they do.  This is why you get our overwhelming support.  This is why Blacks stopped voting Republican and switched to the Democratic party.  

And now you want to attack us and our churches for it?  Why?  Because our community has come together like we always do?  Oh, but of course this time is different isn't it?  Not coming together to elect Bill Clinton again, or his wife... no, this time it's to support a Black candidate.

So now our churches and our reverends and our communities long standing traditions are horribly racist, and they're being bashed by a bunch of  Democrats who have benefited from them in every election past?

Do you have any idea how this kind of stuff looks to most Black people?  Do you even care anymore?

by Brillobreaks 2008-03-13 01:19PM | 0 recs
Re: The Black Church and Democrats.

I don't think MLK would have been supportive of some of that Rev. Wright has to say.  I am sorry but I feel preaching hate is never right, no matter what the history.

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 01:24PM | 0 recs
Re: The Black Church and Democrats.

Where exactly did he preach hate? Do you have a quote?

by jb1125 2008-03-14 12:20AM | 0 recs
Re: The Black Church and Democrats.

Nobody is attacking African americans or the churches.

If you don't see anything wrong in that anti american , hate speech then houston we have a problem.

That is not the America Obama evokes in his speeches , Obama should repudiate that kind of hate speech .

It has nothing to do with AA's or the church.

Calling America KKK is not acceptable to me and to most Americans.

by lori 2008-03-13 01:26PM | 0 recs
Re: The Black Church and Democrats.

Have you heard anything from the Clinton campaign regarding this controversy?  I have not.

The comment you responded to pretty much explains the reason why.

Even though many black people would not agree with Wright's statements, an attack on this issue would be widely perceived as an attack on the institution of the black church itself, on the freedom of black people to speak candidly about racial issues within their houses of worship.  This despite the fact that, as I said, Wright hardly speaks for black people as a whole with these statements.

The controversy is obviously real and it will certainly not be a boon to Obama in the general election, or in the primary either, for that matter.  But savvy Democrats will stay far away from fanning these particular flames.  I think Hillary Clinton is a savvy Democrat.

by Steve M 2008-03-13 01:35PM | 0 recs
Re: The Black Church and Democrats.

I have noticed the Clinton campaign's conspicuous absence from this story. They're wise to stay out of it. They might consider helping Obama and downplaying it, but given the hatred of her, that'd inevitably be interpreted as a devious way of calling attention to it.

by OrangeFur 2008-03-13 01:38PM | 0 recs
Re: The Black Church and Democrats.

No the Clinton camp shouldn't and would not say anything about it.

But this is going to be huge problem for Obama if he doesn't put out the fire and clearly move away from this guy.

by lori 2008-03-13 01:46PM | 0 recs
Re: The Black Church and Democrats.

He has.

by Brillobreaks 2008-03-13 01:49PM | 0 recs
Re: The Black Church and Democrats.

I am with you.  For a guy as savvy about racial issues as Barack Obama, it's kind of surprising he even let things get to this point.  But do you recall when Obama dis-invited his pastor from giving the invocation at his presidential announcement last year?  He knew there was a political problem here, I think he was trying to walk a line.  I have sympathy for the difficult position he's in on this.

by Steve M 2008-03-13 01:50PM | 0 recs
Re: The Black Church and Democrats.

I used to be give Obama the benefit of the doubt , but the way this whole race thing has been played out has just stunned me .

Its Hillary Clinton that I have sympathy because I don't doubt that if the roles were reversed the obama camp would be milking it to the hilt , thats how crude and crass his campaign is.

But her hands her tied because she would be blamed for it one way or the other.

by lori 2008-03-13 01:56PM | 0 recs
Re: The Black Church and Democrats.

I don't think you and I disagree one bit on the way the racial theme has played out in this primary.  But this is kind of a different issue.  Believe me, if I see Obama's campaign try to blame this on Hillary somehow like they did with the Drudge photo, I'll regret a thousand times that I ever felt sorry for him.

Earlier, I saw Josh Marshall try to pin this thing on Hillary, basically saying that it wouldn't have become an issue right now if it weren't for the racist tenor of Hillary's campaign.  What a sad figure he has become.

by Steve M 2008-03-13 02:01PM | 0 recs
Re: The Black Church and Democrats.

What point exactly?  This stuff is being dug up to score stupid political points by playing up on people's fears and racism and ignorance.  

He's said the reverend is wrong, said he doesn't agree with him on a lot.  Obama has done his best to (as nicely and respectfully as possible) say that the reverend is essentially an old man with old views who is now retiring and making way for younger people like Obama with less divisive views on race.

What else is he going to do?  Leave his church of 20 years?  Yeah, that'd play well.  

by Brillobreaks 2008-03-13 02:00PM | 0 recs
Re: The Black Church and Democrats.

Well, as I think I said, he's kind of in a box on this one.

Ever since this whole thing started, I've felt that out of all the smears and attacks and what have you, the church issue was the one that would hurt Obama most in the GE.  That doesn't mean I know of a way he could have handled it better.  A black politician has fewer roads into politics than a white one.

by Steve M 2008-03-13 02:04PM | 0 recs
Re: The Black Church and Democrats.

This kind of stuff is not anti-American and it's not hate.  It's a call for African Americans to go out there and improve America, to make it a better place.  This is the kind of stuff that got MLK called a commie and anti-American.  

And like I said, it's a long standing tradition.  It's where the civil rights movement came from.  It's why we vote overwhelmingly for this party.

How the hell do Democrats not have a grasp on this stuff?

by Brillobreaks 2008-03-13 01:36PM | 0 recs
Re: The Black Church and Democrats.

I hear you.

by plk 2008-03-15 09:07PM | 0 recs
You need to listen to more Ice Cube

Maybe it's just a generational thing, but as a young white guy, I totally agree with the fact that America is a racist country. Barack Obama's campaign has been about moving past that current state. I'm curious, do you think we live in a land of racial harmony and true equality?

by Etchasketchist 2008-03-13 01:38PM | 0 recs
So you're saying that
talking about how Bill Clinton RODE an intern (rode her "dirty"!) -- and relating it to the way he allegedly RODE the black community -- while making obscene thrusting movements, is part of the rich tradition of black churches in America? I refuse to believe that that sort of vulgarity is the "meat" behind the African American community's political will.
by sricki 2008-03-13 01:49PM | 0 recs
Re: So you're saying that

No, that's not what I'm saying.

by Brillobreaks 2008-03-13 01:51PM | 0 recs
Re: So you're saying that
But you think it was fine for Wright to say that? Not the slightest bit inappropriate? Where do those comments fit into your discussion about African American religious tradition? Seriously, no offense -- I'm just curious. Do you think that rant was a good idea? Or appropriate? Am I racist for disliking that part of his sermon?
by sricki 2008-03-13 01:58PM | 0 recs
Re: So you're saying that

No, did I say I thought it was fine?

by Brillobreaks 2008-03-13 02:04PM | 0 recs
Re: So you're saying that
You basically implied that any criticism of Wright was racist because everything he said was a part of the AA tradition. I just wanted to know whether those of us who are trying not to be evil racist scum were allowed to criticize his foul sense of humor, or whether it was inherently bigoted to disagree with him in any way.
by sricki 2008-03-13 02:06PM | 0 recs
Re: So you're saying that

I was talking about the statements people here are labeling racist and anti-American.  I'm not defending the reverend or his statements about Bill.  

Nor am I claiming you're all racists, but there is very clearly a lot of ignorance here about Black folks and our churches, and it's quite simply stunning to me given the fact that they are basically responsible for keeping this party afloat for decades.  

There's a reason the Clinton's spent so many Sundays going to Black churches, and why Bill Clinton's office is located where it is.  

For people purporting to be Democrats and Clinton supporters to be now attacking this man for comments and rhetoric that you will find a great many religious figures in our community using betrays either a complete and total ignorance on the part of those supporters, or shows their willingness to abandon any and all common sense in their efforts to derail Obama.

by Brillobreaks 2008-03-13 02:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

I respect Rev. Wright's right to express his opinon. However, I certainly do not think it is wise to call Rev. Wright's point of view as "African American" thing because I can name hundreds of Africa American men and women who would not consider Rev. Wright's point as something African American.

If I were you, I would not defend Rev. Wright in the name of African American culture. It might work in the short term but it will not work in the long term in terms of fighting ALL TYPES OF RACISM in this country. Do not call something African American just because it is convenient. It is an offense to African American community. Everything is rather political and nothing is just merely cultural.

Also, you did not address the fundamental discrepancy between Obama's 2004 speech and Rev. Wright's speech. Obama demanded us to think beyond racial lines and come together to be ONE America while Rev. Wright reiterates over and over again that there is White rich America against Black America. How would you explain this discrepancy especially when Obama admires Rev. Wright as his spiritual adviser?

Obama should denounce Rev. Wright. I am not saying that Obama should denounce his faith. He should denounce comments made by Rev. Wright and ask Rev. Wright to resign from his campaign. It is not about culture. It is not about religion. If you were truly worried about Obama, you need to advise Obama's camp to treat Rev. Wright's comments as some stupid mistakes made by an overzealous supporter. You do not want to make is as a racial/cultural issue.

by praxis1 2008-03-13 01:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

I'm sorry, but unlike Geraldine Ferraro, Rev. Wright is NOT apart of Obama's campaign.  I agree his statements were bad, and like the Farakhan incident, Obama can denounce the statements (and has in the past).  However, don't spread a false rumor that the retired reverend is part of the campaign.

by shalca 2008-03-13 01:24PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

What false rumor?  He is part of the campaign.  

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 01:26PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

Wright is a member of Obama's African American Religious Leadership Committee.

by praxis1 2008-03-13 01:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

I stand corrected.  Well, I doubt that gig will last long.

by shalca 2008-03-13 01:48PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

Obama has spoken out repeatedly about the reverend's comments like this in the past.  I'm not the least bit surprised that people are unaware of that or neglect to mention them in the midst of their attempts at smearing him.

by Brillobreaks 2008-03-13 01:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

Yes. He said Wright is like an uncle who says strange things. Does it sound strong enough reaction to the outrageous comments made by Rev. Wright? What if Hillary said "Ferraro is just like an aunt who says stupid things in the family." Would it be enough?

by praxis1 2008-03-13 01:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

praxis, that made me LOL.  

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 01:38PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

If Geraldine Ferraro was the Clinton family minister instead of an experienced politician, and said some stupid stuff in church instead of on Fox News... no, I wouldn't particularly care.

by Brillobreaks 2008-03-13 01:45PM | 0 recs
Having been a guest at a number

of predominantly Black Churches the main thing I can say I've come away with is how profoundly each of these congregations profess the Gospel of Jesus Christ rooted in the African American experience.

This does have political and social justice relevance. As an anti-apartheid activist in New York the African American faith community was instrumental in the inter-faith effort among all New York City's faith communities to work against the apartheid regime in South Africa.

That is perhaps a positive way that faith and politics can intersect.

When selecting a president, as a matter of principle, I think we should focus on a candidate's public record and not a candidate's house of worship.

That being said, I still think that Rev. Wright's comments as shown were not wise or all that helpful, imho.  It seems we are going down a path, thanks to FOX and GMA and Ben Smith of Politico of "gotcha" politics from churches played out as YouTube clips.

At some point, we as a country will have to decide how we want to have public discussions in this enviroment...whether anything goes.

For myself, I think Ben Smith disgraced himself with that reporting. His post provided no context and hyped the clip in a way that made it more hurtful and damaging to our discussion.

Ben, if you read this, you've lost a lot of respect from this quarter.

by kid oakland 2008-03-13 01:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Having been a guest at a number

So you are against Ben, but for Keith Slobermann and his commentary from last night?  Just checking.

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 01:30PM | 0 recs
Commentary vs. Reporting

Different rules apply.

by Etchasketchist 2008-03-13 01:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Commentary vs. Reporting

Are you refering to the W.O.R.M rules?

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 01:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Commentary vs. Reporting I was referring to the rules of journalism.

by Etchasketchist 2008-03-13 01:47PM | 0 recs
I addressed that


by kid oakland 2008-03-13 01:41PM | 0 recs
Re: I addressed that

Ok, so KO is "over the top"?  But Ben Smith has lost your respect for posting that Wright is part of Obama's campaign (which is true, unline KO's spattering spew of BS from last night)  Ok.. gotcha.  You are an objective observer in all of this.  Which, btw, I know is not true especially if you post under the same name at DK.

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 01:43PM | 0 recs
So confusing

Why do you say one thing when you clearly mean the opposite. I don't understand. Is this that "irony" thing the kids are all doing these days? Stay off that stuff. It kills the brain cells.

by Etchasketchist 2008-03-13 01:49PM | 0 recs
I understand

that alot of folks are new here at MyDD and might now know me as "kid oakland" at DailyKos as well.

But, yes, I am the same person and am not anonymous. Most people who know me in Democratic netroots politics and know my track record in the netroots, know what I'm about.


by kid oakland 2008-03-13 01:49PM | 0 recs
Re: I understand

Do you still respect Keith Olbermann?  Yes or no?

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 01:58PM | 0 recs

you belong the Howard Wolfson line of attack and attack and attack and attack.

And just like the HRC campaign, you overdo it.

I answered the question already and you responded. I don't think I was ever on the record as being "in the tank" for Keith Olbermann in the first place.

I'm a Steven Colbert fan myself...not that I don't expect him to skewer Obama when he's President.

We can be reasonable and have a sense of humor...right?

by kid oakland 2008-03-13 02:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Clearly

I am not attacking - just trying to understand why you no longer respect Ben Smith for speaking the truth but you say KO was just "over the top"?  Seems to be a little unfair judgment being laid out here.

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 02:05PM | 0 recs
Re: I understand

And actually, I know nothing of your history at DK except the one post where you attacked another member for saying what she was feeling about the Spitzer debacle.   That was harsh, man, and turning everything into Obama just makes people look a little crazy IMO.

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 02:04PM | 0 recs

attacking me with "crazy" doesn't exactly make you someone living up to the standards you are holding me too.

That was an awkward exchange. I don't think that diarist meant that diary how it came off, but even the denial kept up the same line of attack.

You jumped in and make your comment just like you are jumping in here.

I haven't called on the fact that you are just going Off Topic and not really responding to the diary itself.

KO have every right to offer and editorial, it was over the top. But whatever was wrong about it comes down on KO.

Ben Smith was purportedly breaking a news story but he did it in a way that was hurtful and decontextualized. He's supposed to be a journalist, but he wasn't last night.

He's basically passing on stuff people feed him at this point...and yes...he's done everyone a disservice with the manner he's done it.

It's the "who me, someone gave this to me" school of non-reporting.

by kid oakland 2008-03-13 08:26PM | 0 recs
Re: Having been a guest at a number

I think Obama pointed to his church as a means of "proving" he was Christian. So when people go to look you can't then say "that's private".

by monstergrrl 2008-03-13 01:41PM | 0 recs
Re: Having been a guest at a number

Good point monstergrrl.  Obama brought it up in the first place as his "I am not a Muslim" backup.

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 01:44PM | 0 recs
Senator Clinton

has attended Christian prayer meetings with Senator Obama.

If she had said that she knew he was Christian to 60  Minutes, it would have been a powerful way to send a message of Democratic Unity. That we stand together against bigoted right-wing attacks.

She couldn't bring herself to do that with Ohio and Texas on the line.

Hillary Clinton knows that Barack Obama is Christian

by kid oakland 2008-03-13 01:52PM | 0 recs
Re: Senator Clinton

Oh for pete's sake she did say that.  More than once.  

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 01:57PM | 0 recs
Re: Senator Clinton

I'm pretty disappointed in you for pushing that one.  You want to persuade people to give Obama the benefit of the doubt, yet you see evil motives in everything Hillary does.  You're the mirror image of the mentality you're trying to counsel against.

by Steve M 2008-03-13 02:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Senator Clinton

She was asked over and over.  She said "of course not".  What more should she say?  Frankly I think instead of saying no she should have said "I don't care, it's no one's business, and there is not religion test to become President".  I think the whole implying/denying about being a Muslim is religious intolerance and it is total BS.  And that means Obama calling it a smear is totally wrong too.

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 02:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Senator Clinton

I am certain that if she had said that she would have been attacked by the Obama supporters just like she has been.  "She said 'I don't care' instead of 'no'!"

While I see what you're saying, I feel it's a smear to claim a political figure is gay, even though there's nothing wrong with being gay.  Not everybody thinks like us.  And let's remember, the accusations that Obama is a Muslim typically come in those chain e-mails that make all kinds of totally false claims about him.  So it's one part of a larger smear, too.

by Steve M 2008-03-13 02:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Senator Clinton

I agree with what you are saying.  Still, it makes me angry that Muslim has become a dirty word in this country.

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 02:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Senator Clinton

On the bright side, we just elected the second Muslim to Congress!

by Steve M 2008-03-13 02:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Senator Clinton

Having just read that Media Matters piece, I'm angry all over again. What the hell has happened to the media? How could they push something so obviously stupid?

David Axelrod bringing it up again is simply beneath contempt. Obama had better personally apologize to Clinton for this, or he will prove himself to be irreparably unworthy of being dogcatcher, let alone the president.

by OrangeFur 2008-03-13 02:48PM | 0 recs
She did not say what

could have healed and what she knows full well is true, that Obama is a Christian.

I won't back down from that in the least.

She should have said the word Christian.

It's an easy response that her team should have had her state unequivocally.

by kid oakland 2008-03-13 02:40PM | 0 recs
Re: She did not say what

You are accusing her of intentionally refraining from saying the word "Christian" because she thought it would hurt her chances in Texas and Ohio.

To you, I guess that's a reasonable accusation.  To me, it's just another instance of how far people will stretch to ascribe the most evil motives possible to Hillary Clinton.

Because she didn't answer the question exactly as you would like her to, that means she must have been calculating a path to electoral advantage over the Muslim issue.  Okay, keep on believing that.

by Steve M 2008-03-13 02:48PM | 0 recs

I'm just stating my opinion.

Clinton knows that Barack Obama is a Christian.

He's a Democrat being attacked by a campaign that smears both Muslims and Obama himself.

Clinton knows full well that if she cleared the air on this it would send a powerful signal.

I think she should have used the word Christian.

I think that's pretty evident. I mean what I said.

by kid oakland 2008-03-13 02:56PM | 0 recs
Re: She did not say what

There was absolutely nothing even the slightest bit wrong with her response. Nothing at all.

How you can see something wrong with that while trying to excuse Obama's affiliation with Wright is hard to understand.

by OrangeFur 2008-03-13 02:49PM | 0 recs
Re: She did not say what

Good grief.  If she had said "he is a Christian" people would have screamed that she didn't deny the Muslim question.  I don't think there is any way to make some Obama supporters happy, ever.  And frankly I think way too much time and "special" attention has been given to the whole issue anyway.  

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 02:53PM | 0 recs
are you false or misinformed?

Hillary Clinton, 60 Minutes, and the Muslim question

by Eric Boehlert

Less than one second. That's how long it took Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton to answer, "Of course not," to Steve Kroft's question on 60 Minutes about whether she thought Sen. Barack Obama was a Muslim. You can time it yourself by watching the clip at YouTube.

Still, that didn't stop MSNBC's Chris Matthews from complaining on-air last week that it took Clinton "the longest time" to answer Kroft's question.

Lots of eager, tsk-tsking pundits and reporters agreed. They said Clinton was guilty of "hemming and hawing" in response to Kroft's peculiar, repeated insistence that she make some sort of declarative statement about her opponents religious beliefs. And then when she did, Kroft asked that she do it again. That's when Clinton, looking befuddled by the multiple requests, added some qualifiers to her response, including "as far as I know." What stood out in the exchange was not Clinton's responses, but Kroft's weird persistence in asking a question that Clinton addressed unequivocally the first time, as though he was trying to draw out something she was not saying. Even more peculiar was Kroft's obsession with the Muslim question amid a 60 Minutes report that was about Ohio's shrinking working class and what Clinton and Obama were going to do to try stop of the overseas flow of U.S. manufacturing jobs. (Note to Kroft and the rest of the media: Obama is not a Muslim; Clinton knows Obama is not a Muslim; Clinton does not believe Obama is a Muslim. Clinton made this very clear.)

After parsing Clinton's answer and then conveniently setting aside key sections of it, journalists at NBC, MSNBC, The New York Times, Chicago Sun-Times, Time, The New Yorker, and The Washington Post, among others, declared her response had been wholly deficient. Worse, Clinton's answer simply confirmed that she was running a "slimy," "nasty" contest. It was a "galling" comment; "the sleaziest moment of the campaign."

The only thing sleazy about the episode was the type of journalism being used to concoct a Clinton slur.

When people suggest that the press employs a separate standard for covering Clinton, this is the kind of episode they're talking about. There simply is no other candidate, from either party, who has had their comments, their fragments, dissected so dishonestly the way Clinton's have been.

The fact is, if you look at Clinton's exchange with Kroft in its entirety, which lasted less than one minute, I count eight separate times in which she either plainly denied the false claim that Obama was Muslim, labeled that suggestion to be a smear, or expressed sympathy for Obama having to deal with the Muslim innuendo. Eight times:

   CLINTON: Of course not. I mean, that's--you know, there is not basis for that. You know, I take him on the basis of what he says. And, you know, there isn't any reason to doubt that.

   KROFT: And you said you'd take Senator Obama at his word that he's not a Muslim.

   CLINTON: Right. Right.

   KROFT: You don't believe that he's a Muslim or implying? Right.

   CLINTON: No. No. Why would I? No, there is nothing to base that on, as far as I know.

   KROFT: It's just scurrilous --

   CLINTON: Look, I have been the target of so many ridiculous rumors. I have a great deal of sympathy for anybody who gets, you know, smeared with the kind of rumors that go on all the time. [Emphasis added]

But to set aside Clinton's denials and suggest that "as far as I know" captured her entire response is patently dishonest. Yet that's exactly when many media players did.

The 60 Minutes controversy -- specifically the intense media spin it sparked -- highlights a disturbing rise in a new form of campaign journalism, which might be best described as post-parsing.

Here's how it works: A candidate (almost always Hillary Clinton) makes a statement, any statement out of the thousands made on the campaign trail each week, and that statement is seized upon by the chattering class and then dissected in order to determine what the real intention was. Experts pore over the text and announce what the candidate should have said during an impromptu exchange with the media. It's not that the statement in question is wrong, or blatantly malicious, it's that the statement wasn't quite right. It should have been a little bit more this or a little more that. Plus, based upon the pundits' expert training and analytical skills, they're able to spot a deeply disturbing, unspoken meaning right below the surface. Alarmed, they then rush to alert voters.

We saw the press manufacture a similar Clinton controversy earlier this year over the candidate's comment about Martin Luther King's role in the Civil Rights movement. The Columbia Journalism Review did a good job detailing the media malpractice regarding that story.

The Kroft interview story was launched within hours of the 60 Minutes' 7 p.m. telecast on March 2, when a Clinton critic quickly posted a truncated video of the interview on YouTube under the loaded headline "Hillary Clinton Stokes False Rumors about Obama's Faith." (Truncated, because the video chopped off the part where Clinton expressed her sympathy for Obama for having to put up with Muslim innuendos.) The video was then pushed out to the press. At 9:18 p.m. anti-Clinton blogger Andrew Sullivan linked to the YouTube clip. Just minutes earlier, Ben Smith at the Politico had linked to the video, along with his comments, in which he echoed the sentiment of the YouTube headline; that Clinton had come dangerously close to spreading a smear. Smith stressed that Clinton's answer was "weird" and "less than ironclad," that Clinton was in a "danger zone" for even "hinting" that Obama was Muslim, and that she was "leaving [herself] open to uncharitable interpretations."

Uncharitable interpretation by whom? By people like Smith.

The story then picked up steam, and the journalism it produced was depressing, albeit not that surprising. For instance, what explained Joe Klein's flip-flop on the topic? On March 3, the Time columnist appeared on MSNBC, where NBC anchor Brian Williams mentioned that the Clinton Q&A had made news "because she gave, I guess, a less than absolute answer that she believes, 'No -- there's no way that Barack Obama could be a Muslim.' " (Williams pounded his fist into his hand several times to emphasize just how resolute Clinton should have been when describing her opponent's faith.)

Klein's response? "What happened with the 60 Minutes interview was exhaustion. I don't see [Clinton] as someone who would consciously leave doubts about whether or not Barack Obama is a Muslim. The appropriate answer was, 'He is what he says he is.' "

Klein didn't think there was anything wrong with Clinton's answer. Until, that is, Klein decided there was something very wrong with Clinton's answer. Three days after appearing on MSNBC, Klein wrote in Time magazine that "Hillary Clinton disgraced herself by playing into these innuendos by telling 60 Minutes that Obama isn't Islamic 'as far as I know.' "

So on Monday there was nothing wrong with Clinton's answer, according to Klein. But by Thursday, Clinton's answer had "disgraced" the candidate.

Lots of the journalism surrounding the story was simply unfair. Meaning, the only way journalists could make the Clinton response to the Muslim question newsworthy was to pretend that when Kroft pressed her, she essentially refused to answer the question and then when she finally did, qualified it with "as far as I know." Journalists had to hide the most pertinent parts of the answer -- the context -- in order to make the exchange newsworthy. And lots of reporters and pundits did just that.

   * In The New York Times, columnist Bob Herbert wrote that Clinton's "as far as I know" response represented "one of the sleaziest moments of the campaign to date." For some reason Herbert never informed readers that when first asked if she thought Obama was a Muslim, Clinton immediately answered, "Of course not."

   * In The Washington Post, columnist Harold Meyerson suggested Democratic Party leaders, such as former Vice President Al Gore, "condemn" the type of "attacks and innuendos" Clinton used when she was "hemming and hawing on 60 Minutes over whether Obama really is Christian." Meyerson never informed readers that when first asked if she thought Obama was a Muslim, Clinton immediately answered, "Of course not."

   * In the Chicago Sun-Times, columnist Carol Marin claimed Clinton's "as far as I know" comment constituted "foul play." Marin never informed readers that when first asked if she thought Obama was a Muslim, Clinton immediately answered, "Of course not."

   * In The New Yorker, Ryan Lizza insisted Clinton's "disingenuous remark on '60 Minutes' that Obama was not a Muslim 'as far as I know' was especially galling." Lizza never informed readers that when first asked if she thought Obama was a Muslim, Clinton immediately answered, "Of course not."

   * In the New York Observer, Niall Stanage insisted Clinton's "as far as I know" response was part of her "nasty" campaign's "downward spiral" and represented "direct attacks and slimy insinuations." Strange never informed readers that when first asked if she thought Obama was a Muslim, Clinton immediately answered, "Of course not."

   * On NBC's Nightly News, Andrea Mitchell reported that Clinton's 60 Minutes answer "seemed to only keep the [Muslim] issue alive." Mitchell never informed viewers that when first asked if she thought Obama was a Muslim, Clinton immediately answered, "Of course not."

   * Appearing on MSNBC, Bloomberg News columnist Margaret Carlson complained that Clinton "doesn't have enough sympathy to say: Of course he's [Obama] not a Muslim." When in truth, that was almost exactly what Clinton said in response to the question of whether Obama is a Muslim: "Of course not."

What's disturbing is that either all these journalists failed to read the entire transcript or watch the relevant video from the 60 Minutes interview and therefore were not informed about Clinton's response. Or worse, they knew about her entire response and purposefully left out key phrases in order to portray the candidate in the worst possible light.

Then there was Newsweek's Howard Fineman, who poured over the 60 Minutes clip like Jim Garrison dissecting the Zapruder film:

   Hillary Clinton doesn't do anything by accident. I watched that CBS tape of Steve Kroft's interview very, very carefully and Hillary was brilliantly Machiavellian in sounding indignant while at the same time raising doubts about Obama. She said, 'I have no reason to think that he's anything other than a Christian.' That was -- I mean, I'm a reporter and an analyst, not an editorial writer, but that was positively Nixonian in its pauses and innuendos. Look at it and look at it carefully, there was nothing accidental about it.

First, don't you love how Fineman announced he was just a reporter, not an editorial writer, so he was going to keep his personal opinion out of his completely objective analysis that Clinton was just like the conniving Richard Nixon?

Secondly, Fineman was simply reaffirming a cardinal rule that the press adheres to when parsing Clinton syntax: No phrase is uttered accidentally. Nothing -- nothing -- the candidate (or her husband) has said over the course of a 14 month campaign, including spontaneous exchanges with journalists, has been spoken by chance. Incredibly, it's all pre-planned.

As Alex Koppelman at Salon noted, following Fineman's claim, "Literally every single thing she does and says, every word, is planned? That just doesn't make any sense -- indeed, it seems physically impossible."

I mentioned that MSNBC's Chris Matthews was among the first to criticize Clinton's response to the 60 Minutes question. I should note that the following night on MSNBC Matthews said that after actually watching the video of Clinton, he considered her response to the Muslim question to be "unexceptional." My hunch is that what changed Matthews' mind was the fact that when Clinton uttered her infamous "as far as I know" phrase, she had a bewildered, what-the-hell-are-you-talking-about look on her face in response to Kroft's repeated inquiries about Obama's faith; a quizzical look that never showed up in the transcripts or in the news accounts.

Of course, this being Chris Matthews, the following night he flip-flopped his position again and suggested Clinton's 60 Minutes answer constituted an "attack," even though he had previously announced her answer had been "unexceptional."

Much more consistent on the whole matter was Matthews' MSNBC colleague Joe Scarborough, the former Republican congressman and foot solider in the 1990s Gingrich Revolution. Scarborough saw nothing unusual in Clinton's Muslim comments. And when MSNBC reporter David Shuster appeared on Scarborough's morning program on March 4, brought up the 60 Minutes comments, and quickly echoed the media's conventional wisdom that the comments reflected poorly on Clinton, Scarborough slyly turned the tables to illustrate the absurdity of demanding absolute answers when badgering an interview subject about somebody else's faith:

   SCARBOROUGH: Let me ask you this question, David Shuster, do you think [co-host] Mika Brzezinski is a Christian? She says she is. Is she a Christian?

   SHUSTER: Yeah, I believe she is. But here's the point --

   SCARBOROUGH: Hold on a second. You say you believe she's a Christian. You 'believe.' What does that mean? Is she or isn't she? Is she a Christian or not?

   SHUSTER: Well look, Mika and I have never actually had that conversation and I've never heard anybody have a conversation about her religion.

   SCARBOROUGH: But Mika says she's a Christian. So you're saying you don't know if she's a Christian or not?

   SHUSTER: That's fine! To me it doesn't matter.

   SCARBOROUGH: Oh, it doesn't matter? So now you're saying it doesn't matter.

Scarborough perfectly proved the larger point: The Clinton-Muslim story was a soggy game of gotcha, and not much more.

by John Wesley Hardin was a Friend to the Poor 2008-03-13 02:14PM | 0 recs
I watched the YouTube

the one about how Hillary never having trouble getting a cab? I didn't really see what was so awful about that. Pointing out that Hillary Clinton has been the beneficiary of white privilege and that we live in a racist country is a pretty "duh" thing to say as far as I'm concerned. I disagreed with the part about having to work twice as hard and whatnot. We live in a sexist country too. Young Ms. Rodham faced her fair share of obstacles on the way to where she is. America was founded on the principle that only white rich (aka "land owning") males were full fledged People capable of voting and holding office. That was in the early drafts of the constitution for a while until a few amendments changed very recently, right? So what's the big deal exactly? Maybe I missed it. I think the creepy part of this whole thing has been the reaction from Hillary supporters and the subtext of  "ZOMG! Obama hates white folks. Obama's gonna let Arabs blow up Isreal! FARRAKAHN!!!"

Just curious, KO, what specifically did you disagree with? Care to rock a quote or two just for discussion's sake?

by Etchasketchist 2008-03-13 01:30PM | 0 recs
Re: I watched the YouTube

With far fewer contortions than necessary to see something sinister in the 3 am ad or the 60 minutes interview, one could say that Wright was essentially placing Hillary Clinton among the rich white Romans who killed Jesus, played in this case by Barack Obama.

And why is he even bringing up politics, or if he must, why can't he simply talk about Obama without dragging Clinton into it? If I understand this correctly, this was a sermon delivered on Christmas Day! A few weeks later, there's talk about Bill Clinton riding black people the way he rode Monica Lewinsky. That also seems kind of gratuitous, doesn't it?

by OrangeFur 2008-03-13 01:36PM | 0 recs
Ah yes,

Fair enough. That's true. Hillary Clinton didn't kill Jesus. And I agree, preachers shouldn't talk candidates so explicitly.

As for the 3am ad, it sure was sinister ("duh-nuh...duh-nuh, something scary's gonna kill your kids in the night!!!") but not racist. I don't know what 60 minutes interview you're referring to.

by Etchasketchist 2008-03-13 01:43PM | 0 recs
for one

it was the matter of a tone that seemed willing to divide when it could unite.

For two, it was attributing a racial identity of any sort to "who killed Jesus." That's not the theology I learned in my studies.

For three, I am not a fan of the phrases he used to describe the Clintons. I think they were uncalled for and unhelpful.

by kid oakland 2008-03-13 01:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

How does one "fundamentally misunderstand"
Wright when he said at Howard that the US Government Created AIDS and set it loose?


by John Wesley Hardin was a Friend to the Poor 2008-03-13 02:00PM | 0 recs
You know

alot of people said and didn't say things about HIV/AIDS over the years, notably President Reagan refusing to mention HIV/AIDS as it devastated the African American and gay communities alike.

Clearly, you didn't get the point of the diary.  Wright does not speak for me or for Senator Obama.

Your attack dogging on this will come back to bite the Clinton campaign and the Democratic party.

There is a divide between faith and politics in the USA.

I shouldn't have to reiterate that, but..there you go.

by kid oakland 2008-03-13 02:16PM | 0 recs
Re: You know

Stop comparing you and Obama.  You are not Obama.  Of course Wright doesn't speak for you, he doesn't know you and you don't him.  

He does speak for Obama, he is a mentor!  Would you have sat and contributed in Wright's church for 20 years?  Would you have him marry you or baptise your children?  Probably not.  Do you see that difference?

by oc 2008-03-13 02:21PM | 0 recs
What you are saying

is offensive but I guess you just don't see that.

That's why we keep religion out of our politics.

How someone chooses to baptise their child or perform their marriage ceremony is deeply personal and it's a private matter.

It has no place in political football.

Fwiw, in the faith I was raised in, Roman Catholic, there was very little choice involved in what parish you attend or who performs your sacraments.

I was confirmed by a highly conservative Bishop who gave a 25 minute homily about the Devil. He was in no way representative of my parent's deep social justice faith or political views.

He was the Bishop we got that day. And yes, he slapped all of us on the face, as is a part of my religious tradition. Video of that homily and cermony would be quite shocking to some, I'm sure.

When we get into this stuff, we stop talking about what matters to Americans.

We also run the risk of deeply offending other people for the faith of their family.

We are Americans, this is not our tradition. Let's not start to make it so.

Religious pluralism and tolerance are worth defending, and I'm sure that our party's leaders understand that deeply.  

by kid oakland 2008-03-13 02:34PM | 0 recs
Re: What you are saying

I don't see how you can not see the difference between religion and hate mongering.  I agree.. freedom from religion is something worth fighting for and I think religion should be kept out of politics 100%.  However, Obama has repeatedly invoked the name and teachings of Rev. Wright so if he wants to use that to support his campaign he has to expect criticism.

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 02:36PM | 0 recs
Re: What you are saying

this guy isnt logical, he thinks he's on a mission for his "Obama".

by John Wesley Hardin was a Friend to the Poor 2008-03-13 05:32PM | 0 recs
Re: You know

Clearly, you didn't get that we reject your desire to kill this as a point of "contrast".

obama opened this door with his books.

cant be closed now.


and what the hell was that reagen bit about aids?
that had nothing to do with with wright's nutball conspiracy talk about it.

by John Wesley Hardin was a Friend to the Poor 2008-03-13 05:43PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

Talking about racism is fair, talking racist is not.  Stop intellectualizing ignorance by one's group or individual history. ignorance is ignorance.  If church goers are anti-semetic or anti gay (black or white church) who cares what the 'reasons' are - it's ignorant.  

Obama identifies with that church and rev wright.  He has an intimate relationship with rev wright.  Idolizes enough to speak of him in his book.  

Where one attends services is a reflection of thier beliefs, one can not run from that.  As a jew I intentionally am not involved in the orthodox or conservative synagogues because of some of their political & social beliefs.  I'm attend a reform temple.

If Obama truly found his church & rev opinions offensive he would not have spent 20 years there.  He's there because he believes.

There are 100's and 1000's of african american churches and he chose that one.  And no, they are not all the same as you are trying to claim.

Kid O, I know you are uncomfortable with his church, hence you are rationalizing as if writing a term paper.

by oc 2008-03-13 02:02PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

I will give an "Amen" to that.

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 02:06PM | 0 recs
Good for you

but I would say that as a matter of American tradition and principle, none of us has any business telling someone else what house of worship to attend or whether to attend a house of worship at all.

We can go down this path and put videos up from congregations and smear branches of different faiths, but it is a path that is fundamentally un-American. Just fundamentally so.

Religious freedom and pluralism imply that we not create religious tests like you propose.

That affects believers and non believers alike.

by kid oakland 2008-03-13 02:25PM | 0 recs
Re: Good for you

Sorry, but preaching intolerance and hatred is not the same as no religious test.  I am not saying Obama should stop going to this church or that he should cut all ties to Rev. Wright.  I am saying that he probably has some explaining to do to undo any damage from this.  And thankfully for once there is no way to pin this on Clinton.  

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 02:27PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics
Southern trees bear strange fruit,
Blood on the leaves and blood at the root,
Black bodies swinging in the southern breeze,
Strange fruit hanging from the poplar trees.
by CardBoard 2008-03-13 02:41PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

Okay, what on earth does this have to do with the topic here?

by OrangeFur 2008-03-13 02:51PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

Oh, I didn't cite - oops...It is a Billie Holiday song that Wright, Cone, West and others are fond of repeating.  To remind people of the pain that their religious expression bears.

Here Some Vid.

by CardBoard 2008-03-13 02:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

You have to be more careful. Seriously. I was stunned for a good while trying to figure out what you meant by that.

by OrangeFur 2008-03-13 03:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

I had the cite written in word, just missed it when copying - so sorry

by CardBoard 2008-03-13 03:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

I should clarify as well--The tone of my comment didn't come through properly. It was more of relief than annoyance.

by OrangeFur 2008-03-13 03:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

OH for pete's sake.  No one is telling Rev. Wright to shut up and go to the back of the bus.  I have said over and over he is entitled to his opinion.  I advocate for free speech for EVERYONE, even if that means the KKK gets to speak.  But, I think if a Presidential candidate who is running on the message of hope and inclusion is going to use Rev. Wright and his church as an example of what has helped him be the man he has become today then it deserves to be looked at from that angle.  Period.

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 03:01PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

I think Wright's comments came from an important place...and do not think we should shame anybody from public office for coming from that place.  Obviously it is not politically correct to speak like this from a public place - but, I'd encourage people to take some time to explore what Cornell West, James Cone, and Countee Cullen have to say.

by CardBoard 2008-03-13 03:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

Billie Holiday?  Ok...  so your point about racism is what?  That people who are offended by Rev. Wright's comments are racist?

by JustJennifer 2008-03-13 02:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Faith and Politics

Oh, no, no, no

I think it would benefit us all to engage this history though, and before writing off Wright's comments explore where they come from.

by CardBoard 2008-03-13 03:16PM | 0 recs


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