2008 Presidential Election, Race and Racism
Professor Vernellia Randall
Speaking Truth to Power!

Wright's truths painful for some


Send Letter to Secretary Hillary Clinton:
United States Must be fully Participate in United Nations Conference
 on Eliminating Racism (Durban Review).



Home March 13,2008 Hillary Clinton and Gearldine Ferraro     February 26, 2008 - Tim Russert;     February 21, 2008 - Bill O'Reilly;       February 20, 2008 - Bill O'Reilly;          January 30, 2008 - National Organization of Women - New York;          January 15, 2008  - MSBNC, Brian Williams and Tim Russert Discussion Forum
This site focuses on one issue: racial inequality. It does not endorse or oppose any party or any candidate.


Home                                                    x
Worst Person                               x
Institutional Racism                                    x
Inequalities & the Election                                  x
Race and Racism                              x
Racial Groups                                       x
World Perspective                               x
NAACP Questionnaire                            x
Primaries and Caucuses                             x
Site Map
This website is always under construction please email me  relevant links related to any of the candidates or to race and racism and the election.
African Americans                                         X
Asian Americans                                                   X
European Americans                         X
Latino(a) Americans                                          x
Native Americans                                 x
Pacific Islanders                                       x
Institutional Racism                                     x
01 Race and Racism                                     x
02 Citizenship Rights                                     x
03 Justice                                     x
04 Basic Needs                                     x
05 Intersectionality                                     x
06 Worldwide                                     x

3/28/08 Columbia State (SC) (Pg. Unavail. Online)

2008 WLNR 5874567

Columbia State (SC)

Copyright 2008 The State

March 28, 2008

Section: a


JOSEPH A. DARBY, Guest columnist

There's been great media hue and cry about selected words of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, the recently retired pastor of Chicago's Trinity United Church of Christ, where presidential candidate Barack Obama and his family are members. Sen. Obama has condemned some of what his former pastor has said and has offered perhaps the best perspective on the urgency and necessity of America facing up to its legacy of racial inequity since Martin Luther King Jr,'s "Letter from a Birmingham Jail" in a recent landmark speech, but America is still focused on a few ten-second sound bites from Rev. Wright's 30- or 40-minute sermons.

I believe that the current controversy actually presents a teachable moment. Dr. Wright's critics should visit the Web site of his former pastorate, www.tucc.org/home.htm. Those who do so will find that the 8,000- member church has more than 50 ministries. Some of them, such as the Africa Ministry and the Isuthu Ministry, reflect the cultural roots of the historically black church and its emphasis on awareness, responsibility and self-sufficiency. Others, such as the Married Couples Ministry and Girl Scouts, can be found in churches across lines of race and class.

Those with the courage to actually think and learn with open minds will find a familiarly Christian church that reflects the heritage of the majority of its members and that flourished under Dr. Wright's leadership.

Dr. Wright's critics also need to learn more about the historically black church and its clergy. Since the days of slavery, the historically black church has been a haven for those who have been dehumanized and demeaned and a vehicle to rise both physically and spiritually in an America that relegates black Americans to second-class citizenship and that often cloaks bigotry in religion. Black clergy have always been heralds of freedom and fairness, walking not in the passive footsteps of a "neutered" Jesus, but in the bold and authentic footsteps of the Jesus who spoke truth to the religious and political powers of his day and who was falsely accused and executed for doing so.

Many institutions that were the foundation of black America have crumbled, but the historically black church still has the capacity to be an independent voice of conscience and progress. All good black pastors sometimes say things that their members might hesitate to openly say in an America where race still matters and where those who tell the truth might not be physically lynched, but can still be economically or politically lynched if they question the powers that be or upset the status quo.

In view of the heritage and ongoing role of the historically black church, I don't find Dr. Wright's words to be outrageous. In context, he simply speaks the truth in a way that makes those who practice comfortable cultural Christianity uncomfortable and that challenges America to be what it claims to be: "One nation, under God with liberty and justice for all."

I'm also not surprised that he's been bitterly criticized, because those who can't set the agenda for the black church from beyond the church and are ignorant of the full work of the church often fear the black church and black clergy.

I hope that even though Dr. Wright has retired from a distinguished and exemplary career as a pastor and theologian, he'll continue to give needed cultural indigestion to an America that's too often long on promises but short on equitable results.

I also hope he'll remember that criticism from those who interweave their faith and their view of patriotism and those with a narrow and sterile vision of properly expressed faith is the price of speaking the truth. Dr. King, a Southerner whose words and work changed the Southern way of life, was branded a communist and an "outside agitator" in his day and was vilified when he stood up not just for civil rights for black America, but for the well-being of Americans of all colors and cultures. German Theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer was executed for pointing up the brutal inconsistencies in what passed for religion in Nazi Germany.

I'd also urge political pundits and those who create spin for candidates to play fair. If Sen. Hillary Clinton can only offer up kind and careful criticism of the ranting of Geraldine Ferraro and if John McCain did not reject the endorsement of the Rev. John Hagee, who is consciously homophobic, possibly anti-Catholic and who called Hurricane Katrina "the judgment of God against New Orleans," then Sen. Obama should not be taken to task because his pastor, like many black pastors, says things that challenge America to rise above its sins of prejudice and greed.

The Rev. Darby is the senior pastor of Morris Brown AME Church in Charleston.


Discussion Forum


This Page Last Updated:
Thursday, July 03, 2008  

You are visitor number
Hit Counter  
Since February 17, 2008


Submit for Periodic Updates
Update List

DEMOCRATIC                   x
Obama                                                    x
REPUBLICAN                            x
McCain                                                    x
McKinney                                         x

This website is always under construction please email me  relevant links related to any of the candidates or to race and racism and the election.
Minnesota Public Radio                        x
WQAD  TV                             x
Australia - US Survey                                 X


Same level:
White preachers, Reverend Wright and God-damm America ] Just a Typical Black Person ] Of National Lies and Racial America ] Unequal Perspectives on Racial Equality ] Lest We Forget: An open letter to my sisters who are brave. ] racial hypocrites ] Wright's remarks 'ugly truth' ] America can't disown the Rev. Jeremiah Wright ] Big Issue in America Is Class ] Race, Religion and the Politics of Repudiation ] Barack Obama’s Problem - And Ours ] Chicago’s Trinity UCC ] Has Race Finally Trumped Hope AND Change ] Not Just Empty Words, or Another "Eloquent Speech" ] The Empire Strikes Back! ] The White Man Who Inspire Wright's  Comments ] Are we really ready to talk race? ] WILL RACE BE USED TO HIJACK THE 2008 ELECTION? ] [ Wright's truths painful for some ]
Child Level:
Home ] Up ]
Parent Level:
What is Institutional Racism? ] Institutional Racism in America ] January 2008 Articles ] March 2008 Articles ] Racial Inequality in America ] February 2008 Articles ]
[Race and Racial Groups] [Citizenship Rights]  [Justice and Race] [Patterns of Basic Needs] [Intersectionality Issues] [Human Rights]

Always Under Construction!

Always Under Construction!

Copyright @ 2008
Vernellia Randall. All Rights Reserved

In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107, some material on this website is provided for comment, background information, research and/or educational purposes only, without permission from the copyright owner(s), under the "fair use" provisions of the federal copyright laws. These materials may not be distributed for other purposes without permission of the copyright owner(s).


Last Updated:
Tuesday, April 07, 2009  

You are visitor number
Hit Counter  
Since January 9, 2008