Saturday, March 15, 2008

Obama and the Demented "Uncle"

Barack Obama said on MSNBC's Countdown tonight that the Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. - pastor of Obama's Church, and a longtime religious mentor - was akin to an "uncle," a member of the family, who says something that "you really disagree with"...

Here's some of what this "uncle" has said ... September 11 was "chickens coming home to roost" for America ... "God damn America" ... and, about the Clintons, "Bill did us, just like he did Monica Lewinsky. He was riding dirty." (You can see it all on YouTube videos.)

Obama has said he deplores those statements. He says he was not present at the sermons in which they were made. Wright, as of this evening, no longer has any connection to Obama's campaign.

Where does that leave us?

1. Obama and Wright are not the same person. Nor did Obama ever endorse any of Wright's statements. And Wright's statements never went out under Obama's name (as racist statements did under Ron Paul's).

2. But the fact that this raving hater was Obama's mentor for so long remains a concern. Obama's denunciation of Wright's statements is welcome, but it does not explain or excuse their long spiritual relationship.

Human beings are flawed - including those who run for President. No President or candidate for President has ever been perfect. Obama's gifts are no less inspirational today than they were last week.

But Barack Obama has taken a hit from the vicious, intolerant statements of his pastor. He will have to work that much harder to prove he is the best person for President.
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