Wright's Church Comes to His Defense

The controversy over Barack Obama's pastor is not dying down yet. As I write this, Google News has more than 1,200 articles on it.

Conservative writer Bill Kristol got his facts wrong this morning.

Rev. Jeremiah Wright's church has issued a strong statement condemning the media's characterization of his entire career by using a few soundbites. It compares the media treatment of Wright to the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. [More...]

"Nearly three weeks before the 40th commemorative anniversary of the murder of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the Rev. Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr.'s character is being assassinated in the public sphere because he has preached a social gospel on behalf of oppressed women, children and men in America and around the globe," the church said in a statement released Sunday.

Here is the statement Barack Obama put on Huffington Post Friday. Also at HuffPo, Oakland Pastor Byron Williams defends the church:

With love at the foundation, Rev. Wright presented Jesus as a radical, revolutionary, and deeply subversive individual who sided with those on the underside of life, and was committed to changing the status quo.

After acknowledging that Wright at times crossed what Williams believes to be an "ethical line," he adds:

Trinity United Church of Christ, under the leadership Rev. Wright, is not some racist/xenophobic cult that the isolated sound bites might suggest. It is an oasis in the wilderness of poverty, black on black crime, and under performing public schools that plague Chicago like it does practically every other urban city.

He concludes:

As inflammatory as those statements appear, they are sound bites. Sen. Obama's rejection of the statements, which he was right to do, does not mean that Rev. Wright doesn't have a truth.

If we really want to end racism there must be a courage to hear and understand a truth that may differ from our own.

The Wall St. Journal writes this morning:

Now, the problem: “A key part of Obama’s case is electability — the notion that he can heal the nation’s red-blue divide by appealing to Republicans, or ‘Obamacans,’ as he gleefully calls these crossover supporters,” and the Wright controversy allows Sen. Hillary Clinton’s team to call that notion into doubt.

Except, Hillary has refused to criticize or even discuss the Obama-Wright relationship.

Will Bunch in the Philly Enquirer has more on the controversy.

Comments are open but you may not engage in name-calling, personal attacks, or label any individual or religion racist. The preview button is your friend.

Update: I forgot this thread was still open. It's closing now, and about to get cleaned.

Update: The comments were so over the top and inappropriate, it would take all night to clean the thread. I've disabled them.

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