Liberals, on the other hand, can be overtly racist toward conservative blacks like Condoleezza Rice and Clarence Thomas and earn accolades rather than condemnation. And in Obama's case, we have more than passive receipt of an endorsement. We have more than guilt by casual association.
Obama chose this pastor and picked this church and has been attending for two decades, presumably because he embraced its message and its approach. His wife's curious statements about America, such as when she told the New Yorker that our country is "downright mean," provide further grounds for our skepticism. It will not do for Obama to claim he was unaware of Wright's racism and anti-Americanism.
A brief review of the Wright videos shows that his race-driven spirit was one of the animating forces in that church. We didn't see congregants spilling toward the exits in protest but instead gesturing in participatory approval. It stretches credulity to deny that such vitriol was central to Wright's worldview or to suggest that Obama was unaware that it was. It is thus silly to quibble over the irrelevant distraction of whether Obama happened to be in attendance at this or that particular hate exhibition.
Viewing all this in a light most favorable to Obama, if he chose this church for political expedience rather than spiritual nourishment, he must tell us what principles he wouldn't compromise in furtherance of his ambitions. If he somehow clears that hurdle, he must next explain how he can possibly deliver on his promises to unite us publicly en route to a post-racial and post-partisan society, when he's obviously willing privately to benefit from the energy of divisiveness and racism. This takes the ends-justifies-the-means approach to new extremes.
Democrats, including Clinton supporters, are quick to defend Obama because they realize he is still their likely nominee and they can't afford this issue to have legs into the general election campaign. They insist we should look at "the issues" rather than this side story. Besides, Obama has denounced the pastor's remarks.
The denunciation is hollow, given Obama's long voluntary history with this pastor. And the Democrats' attitude toward character has always been specious. They want it to be an issue only when they are claiming Republicans lack character -- as with the falsely alleged lies of Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld.
We all know that one's character cannot be separated from his actions, as the latter springs from the former. Voters must satisfy themselves about a candidate's character since his character will have an impact on their lives.
Instead of giving us answers to supplement our negligible knowledge of his character and history, Obama has given us only more questions -- many alarming questions.
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