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May 31, 2008

I See White People: Obama's Politics of Oppression

Glenn Reynolds links to this account of a recent sermon at Obama's church, Trinity United:

Pfleger, described by Moss as "a friend of Trinity . . . a brother beloved . . . a preacher par excellence . . . a prophetic, powerful pulpiteer . . . our friend . . . our brother," delivers a hateful rant against Hillary Clinton:

When Hillary was crying [gesturing tears, uproarious laughter from audience]--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" [laughter, hoots]. "I'm Bill's wife. I'm white. And this is mine. And I jus' gotta get up. And step into the plate." And then out of nowhere came, "Hey, I'm Barack Obama." And she said: "Oh, damn! Where did you come from!?!?!" [Crowd going nuts, Pfleger screaming]. "I'm white! I'm entitled! There's a black man stealing my show." [Sobs.] She wasn't the only one crying! There was a whole lotta white people cryin'!

Who is Michael Pfleger? As we noted last month, he is a strong supporter of Louis Farrakhan and has been described as a "spiritual adviser" to Obama. He also publicly threatened the life of a Chicago businessman and, according to one report, "is known for climbing ladders to deface liquor billboards."

In his Trinity United oration, Pfleger asserted that white people have a moral obligation to surrender their assets, which, he suggested, properly belong to blacks (the video clip begins in midsentence):

--honest enough to address the one who says, "Well, don't hold me responsible [gesticulating] for what my ancestors did." But you have enjoyed the benefits of what your ancestors did and unless you are ready to give up the benefits [voice rising], throw away your 401 fund, throw away your trust fund, throw away all the money you put into the company you walked into because yo' daddy and yo' granddaddy and yo' greatgranddaddy--[screaming at the top of his lungs]--unless you're willing to give up the benefits, then you must be responsible for what was done in your generation 'cuz you are the beneficiary of this insurance policy!

Pleger's divisive rant reminded me forcibly of a comment by Barack Obama that received remarkably little attention. The occasion was the aftermath of Rev. Wright's attack on his former protege:

Q. ...the strain of theology that he preached, black liberation theology, you explained something about the anger, that feeds some of the sentiments in the church, in Philadelphia.

How important a strain is liberation theology in the black church? And why did you choose to attend a church that preached that?

OBAMA: ...you know, what I do think can happen, and I didn't see this as a member of the church but I saw it yesterday, is when you start focusing so much on the plight of the historically oppressed, that you lose sight of what we have in common; that it overrides everything else; that we're not concerned about the struggles of others because we're looking at things only through a particular lens. Then it doesn't describe properly what I believe, in the power of faith, to overcome but also to bring people together.

Isn't it interesting that Obama, who is half white, "didn't see" that this kind of rhetoric is deeply divisive and hurtful to whites; that it is ultimately counterproductive; that it contradicts everything he purports to stand for; that it is, in fact, racist, until he himself was attacked by his former mentor?

Sometimes things look different when you're on the outside, looking in. Less comfortable, somehow.

Posted by Cassandra at May 31, 2008 11:34 AM

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Additionally, according to Pleger, we have been "raping" the oppressed (5 times for maximum effect) and it is now time for the so-called rapists, which I assume to be middle class whites and blacks, to be held accountable and brought to justice.

It appears that the recently chastised Pfleger is trying to rid us of much of our wealth (reparations anyone?) so that he can move next door to Reverend Wright. I wonder if there is any property for sale in John Edwards' neighborhood?

The angry black man as street theater is beyond getting old, it is boring. Trinity church may well be responsible for signalling the end of our politically correct, reverse racism, culture and it's pathology of imposed guilt.

Posted by: vet66 at May 31, 2008 12:06 PM

What position does Saint Elmer Gantry occupy in the "liberation" pantheon?

Posted by: BillT at May 31, 2008 01:26 PM

A cash position?

Posted by: bthun at May 31, 2008 02:43 PM

There are times when I wonder if there is anyone Obama associates with that isn't an anti American nutjob. First there is Wright, then Dorn and Farrakhan. Now this guy. This should set off alarm bells for a lot of people.

As for what my ancestors did. They didn't own any slaves. One fought in the Union army to help free them.

Posted by: Schnauzer at May 31, 2008 05:05 PM

Dang, I forgot to mention ACORN.

Posted by: Schnauzer at May 31, 2008 05:56 PM

Father Pfleger, a white Catholic priest, is spewing hate against white people in a black church? Great. He's the perfect bookend to McCain's spiritual leader, Ron Parsely, who accuses the US of black genocide and calls for the destruction of Islam. Or maybe this is payback for McCain's other spiritual advisor, Rev. Hagee, who calls the Catholic Church "The Great Whore.

Who are these bigoted, racist, hate mongers? And other than Obama and McCain, who are the people across America attending their sermons?

Posted by: enid at May 31, 2008 06:59 PM

Enid, as my San Francisco sister (and fervent Obama supporter) would say, "Oh please!" I don't think that anyone can characterize either Ron Parsely or the Reverend Hagee as McCain's "spiritual advisers". His contact with them was both brief and tenuous. But this is the old tu qouque game mixed in with a bit of false moral equivalence. One man sits in front of a pastor for 20 years--the other gets political endorsements from two ministers in one year--and it's all morally equivalent.

Rational people know better than that.

Posted by: Mike Myers at May 31, 2008 09:27 PM

I wish Pastors with political aspirations would stop dragging God into it...

Posted by: Dr. Harden Stuhl at June 1, 2008 02:09 PM

As for what my ancestors did. They didn't own any slaves. One fought in the Union army to help free them.

The Democrats and Obama clones were against that war too.

Posted by: Ymarsakar at June 1, 2008 02:09 PM

I think it's important that Obama is in this race, because I think it's important that this rhetoric makes its way to mainstream America (and in mainstream America, I include black, white, hispanic, asian, and every other American).

It DOES look different when looked at through a mainstream lens. When people cling to this--or any--rhetoric as insiders, it couldn't be clearer to them, and the concepts seem justified. But when the lens is turned onto it from the outside, it becomes apparent for what it is.

Many minds won't be changed by the focus. But I think many others will. Many others will see and understand that this kind of rhetoric is divisive, and makes excuses, and when they face their friends and co-workers and acquaintances, they won't want to defend it, because they will understand that it is indefensible.

I think it's entirely possible that Obama didn't really "get" the divisiveness of it, but he sure does now! Sometimes you have to leave your comfort zone to see it clearly.

Posted by: April at June 1, 2008 02:51 PM

forget for the moment the black and white issues. This is a man who seeks the highest office of the land -leader of the free world and all that, at atime when we are at a defensive war for our lives against the most radical (love martrdom) people. he has sat in this Church of radical hatred for twenty years and is supposedly just discovering what went on. It boils down to a man that by his own admission is incompetent to hold the office -(any public office)

That he wills to be a defender of the environment (global hoaxism) and isn't the slightest bit aware of the environment of that poisonous Church is almost comical, except for the fact that millions of the brainwashed byproducts of the sixties revolutionaries against all authority, will vote for him.

Posted by: Don L at June 1, 2008 02:58 PM

"Nephew," he said pulling hard on a Winston and rattling the ice in his scotch, "I'm not God's policeman, I'm just a lawyer trying to get a better deal with Him for you."

Posted by: Drive-by Uncle Bob the Priest at June 1, 2008 03:03 PM

I believe that Obama is forcing a revolution of sorts here in America. The right to vote will be exercised in vast numbers and voices that are rarely heard, because life is relatively comfortable even with war and high gas prices, will come out of their zones of complacency to vote against Obama or Hillary. That is vote AGAINST.

There will be a myriad of reasons and many of them will have nothing do with war, the economy or the environment. (Most people remain unaware of the dangers posed by the terrorists groups at large because alQaeda, The Taliban, et al have not really impacted most people's daily lives. The week after 9/11 most Americans still went to McDonald's and the mall.)

Obama embraces only his black heritage and that is represenative of less than 20% of Americans. Undeniably there will be a racial element to the voting, as well he has fueled racial concerns in voters who may not actually be racist but are smart enought to know his winning the presidency will unleash untold numbers of legal actions rooted in the racism of the past. And God knows what else!

His possible win is bad business, but like April, I think his running is important. I believe it has forced people to actually consider involving themselves in the electorial process, or suffer the consequences.

This is a wake-up call to America to take a look at what is really best for "we the people" and begin shunning the George Soros', the idiotic rantings of the Nancy Pelosi's, the greedy, slanted, life sucking journalists, the Hollywood deadbeat elite, and many more who impact public opinion with their access to the media. I believe we are on the verge of receiving many more wake-up calls. 9/11 was just the beginning...

Posted by: Donna at June 1, 2008 05:46 PM

My take on it is that Obama’s church membership has done what he needed it to do; it gave him Black “cred” to run for office in Illinois and beyond. Hence, it’s no longer needed, and was never anything but political expediency anyway.

It wouldn’t surprise me one iota if he’s still secretly a Muslim..."not that there's anything wrong with that".

Posted by: camojack at June 2, 2008 01:29 AM