Friday, May 2, 2008

Obama, Wright, Clinton, Winfrey and Cosby

By this time, most people are probably familiar with Reverend Jeremiah Wright, Barack Obama's former pastor at Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago. He made some comments during sermons that caused an uproar, and while he had not previously made any additional comments, he has recently surfaced to defend and reiterate his prior comments. I wasn't particularly happy with Obama's mostly non-response to Rev. Wright's comments, but Obama has now formally and decidedly denounced Rev. Wright's stance.

I think Rev. Wright is a coward for hiding behind 1) the color of his skin and 2) his religion. I don't understand how someone who presents himself as a man of God can say the things he did, but he should at least take responsibility for his own position, but to claim that people who attack his views in his sermons are also attacking the black church in general? How insulting! How dare he indict all the members of black churches who don't share the views that he does and upon whom he is now undeservedly deflecting criticism aimed at him because of his own views. Playing the race card in this case is an insult to all the people who do actually suffer from racial prejudice.

I still don't know whether Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton should be the Presidential candidate for the Democrats, but I've been feeling for some time now that they shouldn't tear each other to shreds so much during the race for the nomination that they then have no hope of winning the actual election. Because while I don't know which of them is the best candidate, I do know that I fear for the country if presumed Republican nominee John McCain wins the Presidency.

And speaking of Obama, I really wish he'd stop allowing himself to be portrayed as Oprah Winfrey's candidate. Lots of celebrities back various political figures, but her very public and constant support of him is also concerning me. If people vote for Obama because they think he's the best candidate, that's fine. But I'm concerned that people are going to vote for him because Oprah says so, the same way they will read a book because she says so or will do or believe or whatever any other thing simply on her word.

On a different note, how refreshing are Bill Cosby's opinions on things? I'll admit that I'm not a great fan of his. Yeah, I like some of his older stand-up, and I watched "The Cosby Show", and I know it's regarded as one of the best sitcoms ever. But even at the time, as much as he was being tauted as the best example of a father on television, I always found him to be a bit too sarcastic and condescending to his kids for my taste. But I love the message that he's been trying to spread for some time now. Yes, injustices have and still continue to happen, but don't just hide behind them. Don't use them as excuses, as crutches, to do bad things or to do nothing at all, or as a way to blame something, someone, anything, anyone else for what's wrong in your life. Take charge of your life and responsibility for making your own life better. Yeah, it's hard, and it takes a lot of work, but a lot of people have to do that. Go, Bill!

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