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As we await the West Virginia primary results.....and the 7 straight days that will follow, with the Knee Pad Alumni all focusing on Obama's "problem" with white voters.....I want to return to the scene of the crime, so to speak.... the Rev. Jeremiah Wright issue. I've been thinking about the Wright issue and I believe strongly that there is a dishonest disconnect being manufactured out of whole double standard cloth here.
There may be two possible reasons for the double standard. I'll get to those at the end.
The white evangelical preacher, now deceased, Jerry Falwell....
"....what we saw on Tuesday (September 11, 2001), as terrible as it is, could be miniscule if, in fact -- if, in fact -- God continues to lift the curtain and allow the enemies of America to give us probably what we deserve.
The ACLU's got to take a lot of blame for this.
But, throwing God out successfully with the help of the federal court system, throwing God out of the public square, out of the schools. The abortionists have got to bear some burden for this because God will not be mocked. And when we destroy 40 million little innocent babies, we make God mad. I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way -- all of them who have tried to secularize America -- I point the finger in their face and say "you helped this happen." Link
The black evangelical preacher, Jeremiah Wright....
"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. We have supported state terrorism against the Palestinians and black South Africans, and now we are indignant. Because the stuff we have done overseas has now brought right back into our own front yards. America's chickens are coming home to roost." Link
Clearly, both of these evangelical preachers attempted to explain why the 9-11 crime happened.
The white preacher (and strong Bush supporter) pointed to....well....Democrats. Falwell was actually blaming American liberalism and American tolerance for catalyzing the 9-11 crime. Those who try to, according to the white preacher, "secularize America". America, ironically, has been a secular nation from it's foundation. Gays, abortonists, ACLU, activist judges, pagans, feminists....all of these AMERICANS were BLAMED by the white preacher for 9-11.
The black preacher (and strong opponent of Bush) pointed to America's history of military and foreign policy actions. The black preacher didn't blame AMERICANS. In fact, the black preacher, unlike the white preacher, didn't BLAME anyone.....instead, he pointed out American leadship's being "indignant" about being hit on 9-11. Then Wright reviewed the American GOVERNMENT'S history. Dropping atomic bombs which killed hundreds of thousands, and siding with Israel and white South African leadership who punished the "other". Wright's words were in criticism of our leaders "surprise" that what American leaders had ordered done over the years had come back to bite us.
Falwell, the white evangelical preacher, yes, was criticized for his words at the time. However, his words were never looped 24/7 on Knee Pad Media like the black evangelical preacher's 30-seconds-out-of-30-years have been. Falwell's words blaming AMERICANS were never surgically attached to George W. Bush, despite the fact that Falwell helped in a big way to deliver the presidency, and re-election, to Bush. There has never really been any smears or guilting by association with Falwell and Bush. Not so, obviously, with Obama and Wright.
Now, why has this been the case?
1) The white preacher's reasoning about 9-11 was totally faith-based.
Falwell's accusations were based on a supernatural understanding of reality. Wright's comments were reality-based deductions from historic American foreign policy decisions. Falwell's words were based on an invisible fantasy. A fantasy that portrays a divine being punishing a nation for their liberal freedoms. Wright's words were based on objective, observable, American foreign policy actions resulting in backlash.
In Falwell's worldview, an invisible being randomly punishes liberal behavior. In Wright's worldview, historic events of national "punishment" provoke an equal and opposite reaction.
Now I ask you, which preacher's comments actually make some kind of sense? A "Wizard of Oz" invisible string pulling divinity punishing the country because of liberals and Democrats.....or a reality-based "what goes around comes around" explanation?
It could be suggested that the double standard over "denouncing and rejecting" and the disparate amount of teevee time given over to Wright's comments versus Falwell's (or Rev. John Hagee's)comments is because of the establishment-right's desire to remain in power. Faith-based voters favor the GOP. Reality-based voters favor the Democrats. Thus the double standard.
2) Falwell's invisible-nation-punishing-deity statements were never "denounced and rejected" or Falwell, himself, "thrown under the bus".....because he was a WHITE evangelical preacher, like the Rev. John Hagee, who says equally ridiculous stuff. Wright's reality-based words had to be "denounced and rejected", Obama had to "throw Wright under the bus"......because Wright and Obama are black.
Conservatives have filled their voter rolls with many Americans who are simply intolerant. The GOP has NO blacks representing their political party in Congress despite the fact that Congress is the branch of our government that's the closest to the "people." From Reagan's "southern strategy" of race baiting to win elections, to Cadillac driving "welfare queens", to Willie Horton ads, to "law and order" platforms, to villifying a black preacher in hopes of smearing, guilting and defeating America's first black presidential candidate.....it could reasonably be concluded that the Wright brouhaha over 9-11 comments is only the lizard-brained, intolerant, white supremacist mindset at work rotting what's left of a political party hopelessly in decline.
Take your pick of which double standard justification satisfies.
The Reverend believes both are at work.