It's Damage Control Time for the liberal press. Count New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof as one in the media masses who have been outraged, just outraged, at the supposed conservative bigotry against Barack Obama. This "most monstrous bigotry" isn't just about race but also religion. Stating his middle name and whispering on the Internet that he's a Muslim "are the religious equivalent of racial slurs."
Kristof concluded his March 9 column by quoting Martin Luther: "I'd rather be ruled by a wise Turk than a foolish Christian."
Through months of outrage over Obama the Supposed Muslim, reporters have largely ignored the church Obama attends in Chicago. The Trinity United Church of Christ claims to be "unashamedly black and unapologetically Christian." It proclaims it's a church of "an African people, who remain 'true to our native land,' the mother continent, the cradle of civilization." You can't tell conservatives that if their church said it was "a European people," committed to the European culture and motherland, that reporters wouldn't smell white supremacy between the lines.
Then there is Obama's minister, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, who in 2007 offered the "Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. Trumpeter Award" to a man who "truly epitomized greatness," anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan, head of the Nation of Islam. Is Nicholas Kristof wanting us to believe that offering awards to Farrakhan is simply the act of a "foolish Christian"? It gives an entirely new meaning to Kristof's headline, "Obama and the Bigots."
Now some very disturbing Jeremiah Wright sermons are bubbling up, sermons where he screams until he's hoarse against America, so angry he can't resist bursting with profanity from the pulpit. In 2003, he built a grand government conspiracy against blacks: "The government gives them the drugs, builds bigger prisons, passes a three-strikes law and then wants us to sing 'God Bless America.' No, no, no, God d--- America, that's in the Bible for killing innocent people. God d--- America for treating our citizens as less than human. God d--- America for as long as she acts like she is God and she is supreme."
Five days after 9/11, Rev. Wright was condemning America as bringing on the al-Qaeda attacks with our own terrorism: "We bombed Hiroshima, we bombed Nagasaki, and we nuked far more than the thousands in New York and the Pentagon, and we never batted an eye," he yelled. "We have supported state terrorism against the Palestinians and black South Africans, and now we are indignant because the stuff we have done overseas is now brought right back to our own front yards. America's chickens are coming home to roost."
Are we to believe that on the first Sunday after 9/11 -- when many Americans crowded into churches looking to mourn, looking for answers, looking for community -- that Barack Obama decided to skip church?
ABC's Brian Ross found these words and then noted Obama has professed, "I don't think my church is actually particularly controversial." He said Rev. Wright "is like an old uncle who says things I don't always agree with," telling a Jewish group that everyone has someone like that in their family.
How in the world can the same media that roundly condemned George W. Bush in 2000 because he "stood uncritically" at Bob Jones University now accept this crazy-uncle defense? ABC's George Stephanopoulos suggested Bush's standard stump speech there made him a "Kamikaze conservative." That was a single moment on Bush's campaign schedule. Barack Obama's been attending his crazy uncle's church for 20 years; that crazy uncle married him and baptized his children, too.
Once these statements hit the airwaves, Obama repudiated them but then suggested that those mean-spirited conservatives were at it again. "I noticed over the last several weeks that the forces of division have started to raise their ugly heads again," Obama declared. But the "forces of division" were right there within his campaign -- until Obama expelled his minister from his African American religious leadership team.
Barack Obama looks phony either way. Either he missed all of these sermons, meaning his "devout Christian" talk on CBS doesn't match his church attendance record, or he sincerely thinks that hateful, race-baiting, America-bashing sermons are part of a pleasant Sunday worship experience. The press has an obligation to pursue this.
If Obama really meant any of this rhetoric about healing racial divisions -- in any of his speeches over many months of campaigning -- he would have quit his hate-spewing minister and his Church of Slurs a long time ago. If the media ever meant to be fair and balanced instead of a real-life comedy sketch full of slavish Obama myth-builders, they would have found this story a long time ago.