Mary Mitchell at the Chicago Sun-Times plays a recognizable game:
There is no institution in the black community more respected than the black church. And the notion that white pundits can dictate what constitutes unacceptable speech in the black church is repulsive to most black people.This tactic is becoming old—pretending that criticism or disagreement is “dictating.” Mitchell wouldn’t know an actual dictator if Robert Mugabe walked up to her and introduced himself.
Yes, Ms. Mitchell, white pundits and any other pundit in this country can and will criticize what anyone one publicly declares, especially when the declaration is televised. (And since when did PBS studios, the Detroit chapter of the NAACP and the National Press Club or even Trinity United Church of “Christ” become the “black church?”) When any pundits start advocating that Reverend Wright be fined or confined for his words, then it’s time for you to start
whining complaining. Not before. And if some black people are “repulsed,” that’s their problem. Grown folks expect criticism; children in adult bodies mistake criticism for being dictated to. "Don't tell me what to do!!! You're not my mama!!!"
As much as I want to see Obama make history by becoming the first black man to be elected president, I don't want to see a warrior like Wright denigrated to prove to white voters that Obama is not a radical.Sigh.
When Obama denounced Wright's angry words but refused to disown him, it signaled that he understood the sensitive tightrope he is being forced to walk.
His "outrage" over Wright's latest remarks signals something quite different. With the gap narrowing, Obama advisers are obviously scrambling for every white vote.
But really, what more should blacks have to sacrifice? Their dignity?
Frankly, Obama and Wright risk becoming metaphors for the ongoing struggle of blacks to unite politically.
Obama shouldn't have held a press conference to deal with Wright.
He should have been able to pick up the phone.
My boyfriend and I concurred that Obama's nomination will split this country--even if he loses to McCain in the general election. Prior to a few months back, BF had not known about most of the senator's short-comings--my honey's a busy man--and, in spite of being a conservative, he had wanted his sons to see the example of a black man becoming POTUS in order to plant the idea that, perhaps, they could shoot for that goal as well. And he's not the only black man I've heard express this desire.
I think that too many Americans of all races--but especially black Americans--still don't know enough about Obama and, even if they do, are thinking selfishly about him and not thinking strategically.
They're not thinking about the job which Obama is applying for. Hint: not to be an example to anyone's children.
My guy and I talked a lot about the subject, but the bottom line is this: Obama isn't running just to be the president of black America or to be emblematic of black pride. (That he would be the latter is beside the point.) He's not running in order end the "ongoing struggle of blacks to unite politically." (Did you see my eyes roll just now?) He's running to be the leader of all Americans.
People like Mitchell can’t quite wrap their minds around this concept. That’s why she can speak approvingly of Wright, expect Obama to defer to him and expect whites to be silent about it all in the same op-ed.
Along with holding the subconscious notion that Obama should abide by the rules of black solidarity, many black Americans seem to be desperately clinging to Obama as if he’s the last best hope for a black American to become POTUS for the next hundred years. As if, among millions of other Americans who are black, there’s not one person who would be a likely candidate in the next few elections. No one. So “we” have to latch on to this one right now, regardless of what the rest of the country wants, regardless of the sparsity of the man’s political record and regardless of content of this man’s character and the demonstrable quality thereof.
• This man is for pulling out of Iraq and against it.
• This man is against NAFTA and for it.
• He barely knows Tony Resko but has financial dealings with him.
• He barely knows terrorists William Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn but has been a guest in their home and has worked with the former.
• His pastor and spiritual adviser for 20 years—the same man who baptized him, performed his marriage ceremony and baptized his children—espouses a human-centered, racial supremacy (per)version of Christianity, but he never knew anything about it. And, suddenly, the man never was his spiritual adviser.
People like Mitchell want you to stop "dictating" to Obama and Wright and want you to roll over in the manner that a dog will do to show subservience to the "tide of history" and, interestingly enough, she wants Obama to do the same for Wright.
Trust me, the phrases “first black American POTUS” and “black pride” will ring hollow in the ears of us all if this Sower of Discord is nominated and it will even more so if he is elected. And only a fool—or a racist--would expect those who love this country to be silent about it.
(Thanks to Omnibus Driver)