President Obama called the Gates affair a “teachable moment.” But as Jennifer Rubin points out, what it teaches us is not at all what Obama intended.
It was, to put it mildly, exactly what Obama didn’t need. A polarizing event — confirming the worst fears that he is arrogant, not at all post-racial, and prone to play last-and-loose with the facts — is not what he needed in the midst of the biggest political challenge of his young presidency.
His media synchophants are holding their noses and pretending this is not significant, but a majority of Americans are finally learning who this man really is. And they’re not liking what they see.
An Ohio family is terrified after being attacked by a gang of young black thugs in their own front yard. The family and a couple of friends, all of whom are white, were roughed up by a group of young men shouting, “It’s a black world!” and “This is our world!”
The father, Marty Marshall, is shaken up after the attack.
This makes you think about your freedom. In all reality, where is your freedom when you have this going on?
Indeed. And where is Obama’s Justice Department on this case? The police are not investigating it as a hate crime, but reverse the skin colors and see how fast the Feds would come down on it.
Michael Barone quotes an earlier piece from Steve Sailer suggesting a curious strategy on the part of Obama’s pastor, Jeremiah Wright: Wright is deliberating sabotaging Obama’s campaign, in order to buttress his black racist message.
I bet that Wright doesn’t want Obama to win—that would disprove his whole world view that whites will never give a black man an even break. He wants Obama to go down in flames to prove he was right, and he wants to be the torch. Just as the conventional wisdom has become that white racism cost Michael Dukakis the Presidency in 1988 over Willie Horton, he wants to go down in history in conjunction with the next myth—that white racism cost Obama the Presidency or Vice-Presidency over Rev. Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr.
Makes sense to me. And the fact that Obama still refuses to disassociate himself from this racist hate-monger proves that Obama is either too dumb to figure out what his “friend” is doing to him, or he shares his pastor’s twisted view of America. Either way, this whole episode has not been good for Obama’s campaign.
UPDATE: Victor Davis Hanson thinks Obama’s recent speech trying to explain all this was not a master stroke, as the elite media is trying to spin it, but the final nail in his campaign’s demise.
Even elites will wake up to the fact that they’ve been had, in a sense, once they deconstruct the speech carefully and fathom that their utopian candidate just may have managed to destroy what was once a near-certain Democratic sweep in the fall. And a number of African-Americans will come to resent that they are being lumped into a majority akin to the Rev. Wright, millions of whom the majestic Sen. Obama has nobly chosen not to “disown,” despite their apparently similar embarrassing racialism.
Via Rush’s show today:
Ed Kaitz has a superb piece in the American Thinker comparing the plights of two different minority groups in America: Blacks and Asians. Specifically, he points to the experiences of these two groups in New Orleans during the Katrina disaster and its aftermath. While black leadership was moaning and complaining about the poor government response, the Vietnamese quietly went about rebuilding their lives.
The success of Asians in American culture and the continued struggle of blacks is due less to racism and more to a difference in mindset. In the words of a black friend with whom Kaitz discussed this issue, it’s an attitude of “we’re owed and they aren’t.”
I may be just another one of Obama’s “typical white persons,” but this analysis goes a long way toward explaining why so many whites have a hard time maintaining sympathy for the plight of blacks in America. This is America — where anyone can succeed if they’re willing to accept responsibility for their actions, work hard, and pass that ethos on to their children. Continual whining about racism — especially after all the extraordinary efforts that white Americans have gone through to overcome that evil — is beginning to get a little old.
The Asians understand that. Blacks (at least their leaders) don’t.
Barack Obama’s speech in Philadelphia yesterday was an attempt to distance himself from the inflammatory rhetoric of his black liberation theology pastor, Jeremiah Wright. The pundits are still busy dissecting the speech, but this analogy from Michael Gerson in the Washington Post pretty well sums up the crux of the matter.
What if a Republican presidential candidate spent years in the pew of a theonomist church — a fanatical fragment of Protestantism that teaches the modern political validity of ancient Hebrew law? What if the church’s pastor attacked the American government as illegitimate and accepted the stoning of homosexuals and recalcitrant children as appropriate legal penalties (which some theonomists interpret as biblical requirements)? Surely we would conclude, at the very least, that the Republican candidate attending this church lacked judgment, and that his donations were subsidizing hatred. And we would be right.
It really doesn’t matter what Obama says now about Wright’s theology. The fact that he sat in the man’s pew for twenty years and supported his church with his money means they are joined at the hip. He can’t just wave that history aside now that it’s inconvenient to his campaign.
Obama is in deep trouble over his close association with — and admiration for — his pastor at Chicago’s Trinity United Church of Christ. This “man of God” has been preaching a fiery message of black supremecy and anti-American hatred for years, yet Obama swears he knew nothing about it.
But there’s just too much public history here for Obama to wiggle out of this one. Tom Maguire (JustOneMinute) has compiled the evidence for a long and close relationship with this radical, a relationship that has deeply influenced the kind of person Obama is today.
It is hardly as if this is the church Obama’s parents selected and he inherited. He sought out Wright, was moved by Wright, and is now pretending he had no idea Wright said these things.
Obama is desperately trying to distance himself from his pastor, but it’s going to be a tough sell. His best option now is to plead the only defense that most ordinary Americans can sympathize with: He must have slept through all those sermons.
For years, the Democratic Party has made a career out of championing race and gender issues in an effort to be “all-inclusive.” As a result, the Party has gotten into bed with the NAACP and NOW , and is quick to hurl charges of “racist!” and “sexist!” every time a member of one of the aggrieved classes gets their feelings hurt.
So there is something deliciously ironic in seeing the Party now tearing itself apart over race and gender. They have succeeded beyond their wildest dreams in promoting members of their two base constituencies to the point that they now have a woman and a black running for the highest office in the land. But in a hot political campaign they know no other hand to play except the same old fear-mongering based on the usual identity labels. So they are turning on each other.
Kathleen Parker summarizes the problem well:
What’s clearly wrong is the convenient labeling — and silencing — of people as racist or sexist for expressing opinions that run counter to acceptable speech codes as determined by the minders of outrage.
Thus distracted, we ignore the real monster, whose name is Identity Politics.
It has two faces — and always bites the hand that feeds it.
UPDATE: Charles Krauthammer sees the silver lining:
This primary campaign represents the full flowering of identity politics. It’s not a pretty picture. . . .
The optimist will say that when this is over, we will look back on the Clinton-Obama contest, and its looming ugly endgame, as the low point of identity politics, and the beginning of a turning away. The pessimist will just vote Republican.