Wednesday, April 30, 2008

The Wright Stuff

Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear.

Barack Obama's [ex] pastor Jeremiah Wright has gone all nutso. He is like a pastor scorned and he's struck back in an alarming melange of pointed social critique and crazy conspiracy theory.

What a dumbass. I realise Wright's probably feeling pretty neglected by his protege, but really he should have just taken a leaf out of Peter Mandelson's book. He's a British politico and Tony Blair crony who suffered scandal after scandal - but knew when to slink off and shut up and he's been rewarded with a couple of comebacks and now a very cushy position in European government. Not only has the good reverend potentially damaged Obama's chances, he's almost certainly blown his own chances of national power straight out of the water.

Certain right wing bloggers have a race theory about this - that because Wright's ideology is based on pervasiveness of racism and oppression in America to the extent that a black man could never be president - he has to make sure that this remains the case if a black man gets close and torpedo his chances. Maybe, but I kind of doubt it. It smacks of ridiculousness. Besides, I don't really feel that electing a president who's black will any more relieve America of racial tension or redeem past crimes than electing a woman president will make sexism and misogyny a dim and distant memory. (Although I think either would have beneficial effects)

Like a lot of people who behave so self-destructively, Wright's behavior seemed pathological to me. Like he just couldn't help it. Like an ill-tempered couple who just can't stop picking fights with each other. Still, he's an adult, a man of stature and experience and really Reverend Wright should have known better.


Barack Obama has denounced Rev. Wright's words. He found them offensive. Well, good - I guess. But it struck me that what Obama really found offensive was that Wright wasn't following the party line anymore, wasn't giving Obama his due. After all, he'd heard 20 years of Wright's challenging sermons - but only a few minutes of Wright's criticisms of one Barack Obama.


Anonymous said...

The whole thing is sad. But most people who have important things for the rest of us to hear are so far at the extreme that they get labled, correctly or not, nutso. Reasonable people are never heard. It takes nutso's to move people, for good or bad.

I heard a portion of an interview with him on Bill Moyer's Journal and he had some intelligent, but painful to hear, things to say.
Certainly not politically correct things to say. His AIDS conspiracy sounds most nutty, but then there was the Tuskeegee tragedy (sexually transmitted diseases) which was government sponsored, and not all that long ago.

I know lots of people who think I am paranoid about women's issues, but from first hand experience I don't think so.

Sam said...

Speaking of wackos, good luck with Boris tomorrow. I'll follow the procedings with great interest.