Saturday, May 31, 2008

Obama quits his church

According to Chicago journalist Monroe Anderson, Barack Obama and his family have resigned their membership in Trinity United Church of Christ.

Follow this link to see a breaking-news video clip on CNN, with Roland Martin commenting by telephone.

Anderson blogged:

“What worries me is this: Can we expect a President Obama to cave in to the whims and will of the right on policies and issues he knows are important...? Can we expect him to genuflect to negative reports by an uninformed, misinformed or ill-willed media? Is the candidate of change willing to go-along in a willy-nilly get-along fashion?

“I hope not, but I’m not sure.”

I say: After the Rev. Michael Pfleger, a left-wing Catholic priest, acted a clown last Sunday as a guest speaker at Trinity United... mocking Hillary Clinton and drawing more negative attention to Obama... Obama had to make a break.

Or else spend the next five months having to answer for the next loudmouth who decides to pop shit from that pulpit.

I’m curious to see how much pushback there’ll be from black folks. You know... calling Obama a punk or a sellout for abandoning his faith community because of Fox News.

If Barack Obama is so naïve that he didn’t understand the political ramifications of belonging to a black-nationalist church, then he’s not as sharp as he appears to be.


Wanda said...

Yep, heard that today. I think he'll suffer some fallout from black voters, particularly older ones. He's lucky that he didn't do this a couple of months ago, otherwise it would have be over for him.

I do think its kinda weak to leave your church, but like you said, what was he gonna do? These church people were constantly talking reckless.

Just another instance that knocks some sheen off Obama.

jjbrock said...

I don't like what he did but I understand why he did it. The church is in our hearts and not a building. So maybe FOX news will leave the church alone.

tAnYeTTa said...

**pop shit from that pulpit**

you said it!!!!!!

Undercover Black Man said...

So maybe FOX news will leave the church alone.

Yeah, they'll leave the church alone... but they'll find something else to hit Barack with. They are out to destroy that man.

Undercover Black Man said...

you said it!!!!!!

Well... now they can do whatever they want to do at Trinity. It won't be the media's business anymore.

Michael Fisher said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Michael Fisher said...

David, is Pfleger a black nationalist? And what is "left-wing" about the man?

Undercover Black Man said...

David, is Pfleger a black nationalist?

No. But he is a black-nationalist groupie.

And what is "left-wing" about the man?

This remark: "America has been raping people of color and America has to pay the price for the rape."

Kellybelle said...

I understand why he did it. And it's good for the church. Now Trinity can go back to being a church and not fodder for FOX.

Violette said...

I heard the media was doing some really low-down things, like taking church bulletins and calling people on the shut-in list.

If that is indeed the case, then I understand why Obama's decision.

Bay Radical said...

I'm curious: how would you define "black nationalist"?

DeAngelo Starnes said...

Obama is beginning to show that he has the balls of a field mouse (stolen from F. Lee Baily to Christopher Darden).

I'm really pissed off about this vagina-assed move.

RhondaCoca said...


"Black nationalist church"?

odocoileus said...

Looks awful like political theater to me.

Just as the primaries are coming to a close, Pfleger says what's obviously true - Hillary's been a lifelong beneficiary of white privilege, and it's made her feel entitled.

Big crapstorm. Obama quits the church. "I didn't want to quit, but that crazy whiteboy made me do it! (And y'all know he wasn't tellin nothin but the truth.)"

Too perfect. The guy who calls Hillary out for her white privilege just happens to look more Aryan than David Duke. Just happens to be a white ethnic Catholic, one of the groups Obama's had trouble winning over. And he's one of Obama's oldest friends.

Obama wanted out of this church before he started the general, and Pfleger gave him the ticket.

And this in turn makes me think the same of Wright's piss and vinegar press tour.

Stanley's boy ain't dumb. Matter of fact, he's so slick he might be dangerous.

Fall out from black voters? None.

Remember, most black voters are women, and as long as he stays married to a dark skinned black woman, they'll vote for him. When it comes to black voters, absent a live boy / dead girl scenario, Obama can't lose.

The Obenson Report said...

Ho-hum... business as usual, as far as I'm concerned... emphasis on the word, "business."

DeAngelo Starnes said...

rhonda - no shit.

That's some distortion bullshit with the black nationalist church, Dave. You my boy and everything, but that's a weak-assed distortion of the church. Inflammatory and pandering to those who fall for that.

I agree with the tenor of the comments that say maybe this move will allow the church to get on with its business without finding itself Fox fodder.

But Obama has fallen for the trap. He's gonna be denouncing every single fucking time the white press can find something racial about his candidacy and/or presidency.

He needs to grow some balls.

Undercover Black Man said...

Rhonda and DeAngelo: "Black liberation theology" is an offshoot of the Black Power movement. That's a simple fact.

Fine for those who choose to believe it. But if you're running for president of the United States... you gotta deal with what the majority of Americans think about that.

Undercover Black Man said...

Bay Radical: In a nutshell, I'd define "black nationalism" as a mode of moral and political thinking which defines goodness and rightness in terms of (perceived) racial self-interest... as opposed to more transcendent and universal values.

Undercover Black Man said...

... emphasis on the word, "business."

Tambay: The game is always the game.

SJ said...

So he's back to being a Muslim eh?

Colin said...

This finally got me to look at the Father Pfleger clip. I'm pulled two ways.

His core point about white privilege is right. White self-pity is about denying that you start with a leg up and keep getting help. Of course when you point this out most of my white brethren/sistren get really, really pissed 'cause it undermines their fond belief that everything they have is a reflection of their own worth. Obama's political success is premised on never ever saying this, on giving white people absolution, as someone pointed out late last year.

OTOH, Pfleger's style is bizarrely self-trivializing (see Wolcott). Yeah, I know the black church has its own style and conventions and expectations. But buffoonery is buffoonery and both Pfleger and Wright look like people who have spent way too long surrounded by sycophants, with nobody to tell them that their shtick is second-rate.

Obama draws on black preaching tradition, but it's a civil-rights tradition that uses the power of scripture to make points and that far from clowning insists on the dignity of the pulpit.

Michael Fisher said...

""America has been raping people of color..."

What is historically incorrect about the above statement, David?

"...and America has to pay the price for the rape."

Should "America" (actually in this case the correct term would be "the White Supremacists") pay a price?

By the way, David. Do you consider me a leftist?

cuz said...

vagina-assed move.

Remember, a vagina-assed move brought you into the world.

I'm with Kellybelle - "Let the church roll on."

GenevaGirl said...

I'm really sad that he made this break because I was looking forward to the new pastor, Rev. Otis Moss, III, giving the invocation at the inauguration.

Perhaps if there were more priests like Rev. Pfleger, I might actually pay attention during the homily and stop reading the weekly bulletin.

Bone Crusher said...

Nobody agrees with everything that their Church stands for, if they did, would you want them as a President.

Obama should have stayed with his Church and put up with the Political Pundits.

I lost a lot of respect for him yesterday.

bklyn6 said...

Pfleger's performance was straight outta Def Comedy Jam. Whatever happened to separation of church and state? Really.

Antonio said...

I don't blame Obama one bit for leaving. All this negative publicity was hurting his campaign AND hurting his church.

RhondaCoca said...

I'm out, Undercover Brother.

You obviously know very little about certain things.

Why dont you go hang out with Erik Rush!

Undercover Black Man said...

^ See ya.

James said...

"If Barack Obama is so naïve that he didn’t understand the political ramifications of belonging to a black-nationalist church, then he’s not as sharp as he appears to be. "

This has always been the issue. And yes, this is a black-nationalist church (about a mile from the high school I attended -
Go Harlan!) And there is a specific thing as "black nationalist theology" which puts black nationalism above theology. This is why Rev. Wright respects Minister Farrakhan. They are the same. Rev. Wright has much more in common with Farrakhan than, say, Billy Graham or the pope for that reason.

From the book "Black Theology and Black Power" by James H. Cone, easily found in the Trinity book store, "As in 1969, I still regard Jesus Christ today as the chief focus of my perspective on God but not to the exclusion of other religious perspectives. God's reality is not bound by one manifestation of the divine in Jesus but can be found wherever people are being empowered to fight for freedom. Life-giving power for the poor and the oppressed is the primary criterion that we must use to judge the adequacy of our theology, not abstract concepts. As Malcolm X put it: ‘I believe in a religion that believes in freedom. Any time I have to accept a religion that won't let me fight a battle for my people, I say to hell with that religion'."

Now I know many of you will agree with that and that's fine. But that's a tough line to carry into the presidency of a country that is still overwhelmingly white.