March 19, 2008

MY GRANDMA, WHAT BIG PARANOID DELUSIONS YOU HAVE...:

A Speech That Fell Short (Michael Gerson, March 19, 2008, Washington Post)

Barack Obama has run a campaign based on a simple premise: that words of unity and hope matter to America. Now he has been forced by his charismatic, angry pastor to argue that words of hatred and division don't really matter as much as we thought. [...]

Take an issue that Obama did not specifically confront yesterday. In a 2003 sermon, Wright claimed, "The government lied about inventing the HIV virus as a means of genocide against people of color."

This accusation does not make Wright, as Obama would have it, an "occasionally fierce critic of American domestic and foreign policy." It makes Wright a dangerous man. He has casually accused America of one of the most monstrous crimes in history, perpetrated by a conspiracy of medical Mengeles. If Wright believes what he said, he should urge the overthrow of the U.S. government, which he views as guilty of unspeakable evil. If I believed Wright were correct, I would join him in that cause.

But Wright's accusation is batty, reflecting a sputtering, incoherent hatred for America. And his pastoral teaching may put lives at risk because the virus that causes AIDS spreads more readily in an atmosphere of denial, quack science and conspiracy theories.

Obama's speech implied that these toxic views are somehow parallel to the stereotyping of black men by Obama's grandmother, which Obama said made him "cringe" -- both are the foibles of family. But while Grandma may have had some issues to work through, Wright is accusing the American government of trying to kill every member of a race. There is a difference.

Posted by Orrin Judd at March 19, 2008 12:33 PM
Comments

Heh. Print out Gerson's editorial, grab a sharpie and write "Exhibit A" up top. Underline key punches like this one: "This accusation does not make Wright, as Obama would have it, an 'occasionally fierce critic of American domestic and foreign policy.' It makes Wright a dangerous man."

Now go watch Barack Obama's speech *in its entirety", Gerson's tome in hand.

I don't mean to put Obama or his words on a pedestal. But occasionally people meaningfully tap into deeper truths, help us grasp what will get us unstuck. This time around, for a day anyway, Obama "gets it". Gerson doesn't. In fact, I think Gerson "skimmed" then shot from the hip. It shows.

For small words like these -- the fear and insularity of the worst of a Gerson or Wright -- we are all the poorer. Just like Wright and even Obama... you, Gerson, can do better. We all will be better for it.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=pWe7wTVbLUU

Posted by: eyecolor at March 19, 2008 7:58 PM

Heh. Print out Gerson's editorial, grab a sharpie and write "Exhibit A" up top. Underline key punches like this one: "This [AIDs conspiracy] accusation does not make Wright, as Obama would have it, an 'occasionally fierce critic of American domestic and foreign policy.' It makes Wright a dangerous man."

Now go watch Barack Obama's speech *in its entirety", Gerson's tome in hand.

I don't mean to put Obama or his words on a pedestal. But occasionally people meaningfully tap into deeper truths, help us grasp what will get us unstuck. This time around, for a day anyway, Obama "gets it". Gerson doesn't. In fact, I think Gerson "skimmed" then shot from the hip. It shows.

For small words like these -- the fear and insularity of the worst of a Gerson or Wright -- we are all the poorer. Just like Wright and even Obama... you, Gerson, can do better. We all will be better for it.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=pWe7wTVbLUU

Posted by: eyecolor at March 19, 2008 8:01 PM

Heh. Print out Gerson's editorial, grab a sharpie and write "Exhibit A" up top. Underline key punches like this one: "This [AIDs conspiracy] accusation does not make Wright, as Obama would have it, an 'occasionally fierce critic of American domestic and foreign policy.' It makes Wright a dangerous man."

Now go watch Barack Obama's speech *in its entirety", Gerson's tome in hand.

I don't mean to put Obama or his words on a pedestal. But occasionally people meaningfully tap into deeper truths, help us grasp what will get us unstuck. This time around, for a day anyway, Obama "gets it". Gerson doesn't. In fact, I think Gerson "skimmed" then shot from the hip. It shows.

For small words like these, for which there is plenty of comparison -- the fear and insularity of the worst of a Gerson or Wright -- we are all the poorer. Just like Wright and even Obama... you, Gerson, can do better. We all will be better for it.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=pWe7wTVbLUU

Posted by: eye color at March 19, 2008 8:04 PM

Don't sweat it, eyecolor. All of us have at some time been duped by the comment system. Think of it as a rite of passage.

Posted by: Guy T. at March 19, 2008 9:57 PM

So the government did create AIDs to get rid of blacks?

Posted by: oj at March 19, 2008 10:03 PM

>

Nice Obamesque stab at equivalence...

Posted by: Jorge Curioso at March 20, 2008 1:21 AM

Hmm, my double angle-bracket quotation schema was apparently interpreted by the brojudd blog string santization monkeys as an exotic and dangerous HTML element.

Here's what I was quoting above:

"the fear and insularity of the worst of a Gerson or Wright"

Posted by: Jorge Curioso at March 20, 2008 1:27 AM
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