Saturday, 29 March 2008

THE FACE OF AAR

Ken Berwitz

How ironic.

No sooner do I write an essay about Affirmative Action Racism (AAR) than someone provides me a textbook example of it.

Here is a commentary from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer by someone named Anthony B. Robinson.  I am posting every word he wrote, so there is no doubt at all about context:

Articles of Faith: Obama deserves praise for standing by pastor

By ANTHONY B. ROBINSON
GUEST COLUMNIST

SOME HAVE SAID the question to come out of the story of Barack Obama and Pastor Jeremiah Wright is, "When do you leave your church?"

Why didn't Obama leave Trinity United Church of Christ when his pastor said outlandish things? Hillary Clinton has assured us that she would certainly have exited any church where a preacher said, "Goddamn America." Why didn't Obama? What does this tell us about him?

I'm not so sure that's the right question. How about, When do you change the channel? Somehow I don't think Fox News, whose project this is, just suddenly took an interest in a black preacher from the South Side of Chicago. Obama is the target. Politics is the agenda. Fox seems more in business of creating "news" than reporting it.

I thought it was tacky when The New York Times ran a story with hearsay allegations about a romantic liaison between John McCain and a lobbyist. But at least they ran it only one day. Fox has been on this for months. I think it's tacky that from 36 years, or 207,792 minutes, of Wright's preaching, Fox has extracted a sample that amounts to 0.0000012 percent of the whole and gone wild.

Should Obama have exited Trinity Church in protest when, after 9/11, Wright charged that "America's chickens are coming home to roost," or when he said "Goddamn America" for its history of racism and racial violence?

Sounds like what the Bible calls a prophet. Biblical prophets weren't crystal-ball gazers. They were, according to Old Testament scholar Walter Brueggemann, preachers who "regularly exposed the failures of a society in savage rhetoric." Prophets afflict the comfortable while comforting the afflicted. And they use language and images that pretty much guarantee that they won't get invited to cocktail parties.

Amos, for example, pictured the women of the upper classes -- classes who "oppress the poor and crush the needy" -- being dragged out of their mansions on hooks. "Alas, for those at ease in Zion, for those who feel secure in Samaria," Amos said.

It's the complacent and comfortable the prophets assault. The Bible's Jeremiah told his people their end was coming for sure on account of their unfaithfulness and injustice. It would be so bad that God would make them eat their own dead children.

The mark of the true prophet is that they bring God's judgment on their own nation and their own people. They tell us things about us that we don't want to hear. False prophets, there were plenty of those back then, too, tend to specialize either in sunny optimism or attacking our enemies and naming scapegoats.

Just so, Jeremiah Wright indicts his own nation, America. Beyond that, he challenges his own people, calling AfricanAmericans to be self-reliant. Though Trinity welcomes whites (I've experienced that welcome) and counts whites in its membership, the agenda in South Side Chicago is black uplift.

But when do you bail on your pastor or church? Judging from the recent Pew survey that shows Americans switching churches like they change shoes, you head for the door whenever you hear something that doesn't suit you. But not everyone operates that way. And especially not in the black church, which has for generations been the institutional bulwark for a culture in crisis.

Besides, there's more to a person's relationship with their pastor than one or two sermons. Recently deceased preacher -- and prophet -- William Sloane Coffin told the story of a politically conservative friend who suggested that Coffin should meet his pastor. So Coffin went to worship with his friend and heard a sermon that could only be characterized as theologically and politically liberal.

"Why would you stay in such a church with such a preacher?" Coffin asked.

The man answered, "This pastor held my wife's hand in the last 24 hours of my wife's life and then he held my hand in the 24 hours that followed her death. I'd come to hear him preach if he just read the Yellow Pages."

Rather than condemning Obama, we might want to admire him for not dropping his old pastor and friend like a hot potato when it got difficult. We might want to admire a pastor who, in Brueggemann's words, knows about "God's passion for truth-telling in risky places."

There is so much to address in this article that it's hard to know where to start.  So let me just do it in order.  Here is a partial list:

-jeremiah wright's comments were not "outlandish" any more than david duke's comments are outlandish. They were hate-filled and racist;

-Crying over the fact that Fox News reported this, as if it were wrong to do so, is outrageous.  Forgetting for a moment that just about everyone else reported it too, it is NEWS.  When a Presidential candidate's "spiritual mentor" turns out to be a Black liberation theologist who mixes insane racial conspiracy theories along with his racial hatred, voters need to know about it;

-Mentioning that the videos comprise only a minuscule percent of wright's preaching is fine - if you are claiming that these are the only instances of his hatred.  But let's remember that they were sold in the church's store - and that is a sign that the church is proud of their content.  They sure as hell didn't compile a "worst of jeremiah wright" CD for the flock.  This, along with the fact that he is a proponent of the hate-filled, racist "Black liberation theology" clearly indicates wright preached his filth continuously;

-Equating wright's anti USA screeds, in which he essentially says "GOOD for the USA" about 9/11 with being a biblical prophet, is too idiotic to even bother commenting on.  Any reader who thinks this is a reasoned argument is immune to logic, common sense and reason.  Why are you even bothering to read my blog - it's useless to you;

-If overt racism is "black uplift", Rosie O'Donnell is the next winner of the Miss Teen USA pageant;

-To admire Barack Obama for sticking by wright is to admire him for sticking by a racist lunatic.  I don't admire people who do this and - assuming you have something above your brain stem - neither do you.

I wonder if Mr. Robinson would admire a White Presidential candidate for "sticking by" a White racist lunatic.  Call me a cynic, but somehow I doubt he would.

But it is clear that, in the world of Anthony B. Robinson, if you are a Black racist, you are excused.

And that, friends, is AAR.


AAR: THE RACE ISSUE WE SHOULD BE DISCUSSING

Ken Berwitz

Barack Obama, during last week's speech that was designed to divert attention from his loving relationship with jeremiah wright, talked up the necessity for having a dialogue on race.

Forgetting the orgasmic reaction of his many suckups among our "fiercely neutral" media, anyone who has lived during the past 50 years knows we have had an ongoing dialogue about race all this time.

Our problem is that it has begun and ended with the oppression of Black people.  There is a lot more to race, and to racism, that remains unsaid. 

With that, let me show you the following Associated Press report:

Wright drops in on Chicago church
Obama's former pastor joins celebration for Maya Angelou's birthday

CHICAGO Barack Obama's former pastor, who canceled several public events after an uproar over his incendiary comments, surprised a Chicago congregation by attending an event to celebrate poet Maya Angelou's birthday.

The Rev. Jeremiah Wright got a raucous standing ovation when he entered Saint Sabina church on the South Side on Friday night, video from WBBM-TV showed. Members yelled "Hallelujah!" as Wright embraced the Rev. Michael Pfleger, Saint Sabina's pastor.

The smiling Wright accepted an invitation to give the benediction at the Roman Catholic church but did not address the furor over his past sermons. He also sang "Happy Birthday" to Angelou, whose birthday is April 4.

Afterward, he went into an office off the pulpit to greet audience members.

Pfleger told the CBS station he invited Wright because he is a fan of Angelou, who was at the church for a speaking engagement.

Obama has condemned remarks from Wright that denounced America for allegedly racist and genocidal acts. Videos of Wright's remarks circulated on the Internet and television.

Wright has not spoken publicly since the controversy over his sermons began. He recently scrapped plans to receive an award in Texas and to speak at churches in Houston and Tampa, Fla.

There is a perfect example of the racism issue that we do not talk about but desperately need to. 

The issue is AAR;  Affirmative Action Racism.

AAR is when Black racism is rationalized or excused, or even celebrated like the congregants at St. Sabina did, based on skin color.  It is when hateful comments that would forever identify a White person as being racist are just fine if the source is a Black person.

Here we have the disgraced, discredited jeremiah wright being given a "raucus standing ovation" by the St. Sabina congregation. 

Why?  Do they not know about his attacks on Whites and Jews?  Do they not know he accuses the USA of inventing the AIDS virus to commit genocide on Blacks?

Unfortunately, the answer is probably that he got that ovation BECAUSE they know it. 

And this is what brings us to the unspoken issue of racism - the one that Obama didn't mean to address at all, but that we should be talking about every day.  The reason a Black church would erupt with delirous joy at the sight of jeremiah wright.

Let me say this plainly:  I don't think I have ever met a Black person who didn't know what anti-Black prejudice is.  But I have met a great many Black people who don't have a clue what racism is.

Anti-Black prejudice is prejudice against Blacks.  Racism is prejudice against a race - regardless of which race we are talking about.  The difference is vast.

If a White calls Black people sex crazed criminals, that person is a racist.  He/she is prejudging all Black people as if every one thought exactly the same way. That is not only racist, it is damn stupid and ignorant as well.

If a Black calls White people oppressors who are indifferent to Black suffering, that person is a racist.  He/she is prejudging all White people as if every one thought exactly the same way.  That is not only racist, it is damn stupid and ignorant as well.

Get the picture?  They are EXACTLY THE SAME.

And the argument (which I have heard numbers of times from Black people I've talked about this with) that "Well, you Whites have been doing this to us for hundreds of years", is just as racist.  The answer is "WHICH Whites?  Me?  The guy coming down the street that you never met?  You are putting all Whites into the same category, even if you don't know a thing about them, based entirely on their skin color.  That is a racist comment and you are displaying racism by saying it".

I do not give special dispensation to Black racism.  It is no more or less wrong and no more or less invidious than White racism.  Nor is it "reverse racism" (an idiotic phrase if ever there was one).  Nor is it understandable or explainable.

Racism is racism.  It is stupid and it is ignorant.  This is 100% as true regardless of what color the racist's skin is.  I would say it about a White congregation cheering the racist david duke and I would say it about a Black congregation cheering the racist jeremiah wright.

You cannot solve racism by creating more of it - or by rationalizing it away through AAR.


FITNA

Ken Berwitz

"Fitna" is the name of a 15 minute film, produced by Geert Wilders of the Netherlands, which graphically details the depravities committed in the name of Islam.  It is frightening and stomach turning - like nothing you have ever seen.  That is an ironclad guarantee.

As you would probably assume, there have been threats against anyone and everyone who is showing it.  Some have succombed to the threats, some have not. 

I have a problem with Fitna, because it generalizes religion-based hatred and acceptance of  nonstop violence and death to all of Islam.  I do not.

But I have a far greater problem with the fact that a) if we're talking about radical Islam, Fitna  is dead-on correct, and b) in any event Mr. Wilders has a perfect right to create such a film and make it public.

The folks at www.powerlineblog.com have the same problem I do with Fitna being pulled from site after site due to threats against anyone who dares to show it. 

Here are their two blogs on this subject (FYI it seems that Fitna is being taken down/hacked off as fast as people try to show it.  Right now it is playable at youtube and on the Dollard site - all subject to change):

It's A Hit!

Well, sort of. Mark Steyn says that Geert Wilders' film Fitna has been viewed online by 1.5 million people in English, and 2.5 million in Dutch. Popularity isn't enough, though, when people are threatening to cut your head off. LiveLeak, which apparently was the main source of the film online, has taken it down in response to threats of violence:

So, let's see: Fitna says that a propensity to violence is inherent in Islam, a deeply controversial proposition. The film can't be shown anywhere because people are afraid of...something. So instead, the film is posted online, where millions of people view it. But after 24 hours or so, the film is taken down because threats of violence are made by...someone. I dunno, it's really puzzling. The one thing that everyone agrees on is that it's ridiculous to think that Muslims can be violent. So the headchopping threats must be coming from...someone else.

At the moment, I don't know where Fitna is available online, but if anyone can point us to it, we'll put it up.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Fitna lives

Death threats by proponents of the religion of peace have led to the removal of the Geert Wilders film "Fitna" from LiveLeak's servers that we linked to yesterday. In a kind of "I am Spartacus" response, numerous sites have reposted the video. Victor Trombettas, for example, has posted it here on his blog's YouTube account; Pat Dollard has posted it here on his site with the vow that he "will NEVER bow to your ******** yappity yapping"; Michelle Malkin has posted it here; Hot Air has posted it here; Rusty Shackleford has posted it here. As of this moment, it is still posted on Google here. Download your own copy here.

And don't forget the comments of Dutch Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende on the film earlier this week at a news conference held at the Hague: "The film equates Islam with violence. We reject this interpretation."

If you are able to view Fitna, the first thing you will realize is what a brave, courageous man Geert Wilders is.

You will also see that the last partof the film is identical in concept to the "A Taste Of The Future" series I have been posting over the past year.  It shows what The Netherlands will be like if radical Islam achieves its goal of taking over and ruling. 

The one major difference is that I have portrayed the consequences in words.  Fitna shows them in actual graphic images.

I end my "A Taste Of The Future" posts with the comment that "we play political games with this lunacy at our own peril".  Let me end this one the same way:

We play political games with this lunacy at our own peril.


CORRUPTION: REPUBLICANS = R. DEMOCRATICS = ?

Ken Berwitz

Here, courtesy of Brent Baker at www.newsbusters.org, is another in the ongoing series of examples where a Democrat charged with corruption is not identified by party at all, while a Republican is identified by party immediately:

CBS Faster to Identify Party of Republican Than of Democrats

By Brent Baker | March 28, 2008 - 20:27 ET

On Monday night, the CBS Evening News failed to identify Kwame Kilpatrick as a Democrat in reporting criminal charges filed against the Detroit Mayor, but on Friday night the same anchor, Harry Smith, used the very first word, of his introduction to a story on another politician in criminal trouble, to name the party:

Republican Congressman Rick Renzi of Arizona goes on trial next month, charged with using his office to steal hundreds of thousands of dollars. He denies breaking any laws, but the indictment spells out a string of alleged dirty deals.

A little under two years ago, then-CBS Evening News anchor Bob Schieffer avoided the party affiliation of a Democratic Congressman in introducing a Monday, May 22, 2006 story:

The government says FBI agents videotaped Louisiana Congressman William Jefferson taking $100,000 in cash from an informant and later found $90,000 in his home freezer. But Jefferson said today he will not resign from Congress and he said he thought it inappropriate for the FBI to search his Capitol office this weekend. To the surprise of some, the Senate Republican leader said he too has concerns about the search.

CBS used to be thought of as the most biased of the three networks that air a national news show.  In recent times, however, NBC has become so much more noted for its bias that CBS has fallen back in this category.

But as the above report shows, CBS is working hard to regain the mantle. 


MORE PROOF THAT OBAMA KNEW ALL ABOUT WRIGHT

Ken Berwitz

The invaluable web site, www.powerlineblog.com, is on fire.

This is the first of three posts of theirs I am putting up today.  The other two will deal with the 15 minute film, "Fitna", which attacks Islam by showing what has been done in its name - and which has been taken down from several web sites due to threats of violence against those sites.

But more on that later.

Here is powerlineblog.com's John Hinderaker - with an addendum by Paul Mirengoff, showing you exactly what Barack Obama knew about his "spiritual mentor" jeremiah wright and how early he knew it.  The source of this informaion?  Barack Obama, in his own book:

There has been a lot of discussion about what Barack Obama knew about Jeremiah Wright's anti-American, racist beliefs, and when he knew it. It turns out, though, that there is no mystery at all: Obama's own autobiography, Dreams of My Father, answers the question. In Dreams of My Father, Obama describes the very first time he attended Trinity and heard Wright preach. What was Wright's theme? A racist attack on white people. I heard this on Hugh Hewitt's radio show today:

It is this world, a world where cruise ships throw away more food in a day than most residents of Port-au-Prince see in a year, where white folks' greed runs a world in need, apartheid in one hemisphere, apathy in another hemisphere ... That's the world! On which hope sits.

Obama describes himself being moved to tears by this sophomoric analysis of the world's problems. By his own account, Obama wasn't repelled by Wright's racism, it was the very quality that drew Obama to Wright's church!

It strikes me that Barack Obama is uniquely unfit to be President, or, for that matter, to serve in the Senate.

PAUL adds: It's pretty clear that no form of Christianity other than black liberation theology had any chance of attracting Obama. Wright's sophomoric ranting was a perfect fit for Obama. It made him feel authentically black (see Shelby Steele on this subject), it fit the anti-American narrative Obama had picked up in the Ivy League, and it was the best church around for advancing Obama's career in Chicago politics. People have had religious experiences on considerably less than that.

Now think about the fact that Barack Obama told you he had no idea jeremiah wright said such things. 

This held for a couple of days, until he became a laughingstock over the obvious lie.  So Mr. Obama changed to a different lie - that he knew wright said stuff like this but never was actually there to hear it. 

The new lie was also ridiculed, so in his speech last week Mr. Obama changed again, saying that, well, yeah, he did hear it.  This gave the media, much of which is in perpetual ecstacy over him, a chance to pretend it didn't count and promptly drop the subject.  

Sir Walter Scott enriched us with the maxim "Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive".  Mr. Obama's lies about his knowledge of jeremiah wright have managed to give us a web tied in a gordian knot.

But, then again, what did you expect from a politician straight out of the Chicago Democratic machine?  Honesty?  If so, you have a lot of reading to catch up on.

A great many in the media seem to believe the wright issue is now over.  I do not believe this for a minute.  I think wright's hatred, Obama's 20 year acceptance of wright's hatred - and Obama's flippant claim that everyone else's clergy spews this kind of filth sometimes too, will not be forgotten by voters in the general election.

Boy do I hope I'm right.


STOP-LOSS AND DEAF FLIES

Ken Berwitz

Remember the joke about a professor doing an experiment with flies? 

First the professor sneaks up on a fly, claps his hands loudly and observes that the fly immediately takes off.  Then he catches a fly, pulls off its wings, claps and observes that it doesn't take off. 

The professor's conclusion?  When you pull off a fly's wings it becomes deaf.

With that in mind, please read the following excerpt from Nikkie Finke's column at www.deadlinehollywooddaily.com :

I'm told #7 Stop-Loss opened to only $1.6 million Friday from just 1,291 plays. Although the drama from MTV Films was the best-reviewed movie opening this weekend, Paramount wasn't expecting much because no Iraq war-themed movie has yet to perform at the box office. "It's not looking good," a studio source told me before the weekend. "No one wants to see Iraq war movies. No matter what we put out there in terms of great cast or trailers, people were completely turned off. It's a function of the marketplace not being ready to address this conflict in a dramatic way because the war itself is something that's unresolved yet. It's a shame because it's a good movie that's just ahead of its time."

Every movie about Iraq that has come out of Hollywood for the entire war has had an anti-Iraq war theme.  Every one of them has been a box office flop.  So the conclusion of this "studio source" about the latest one?  "It's a good movie that's just ahead of its time".

Maybe this "source", or someone else in Hollywood, can grow a cerebrum and deduce that if every movie they put out about Iraq is negative, and every movie flops, it just might be that the public does not want negative movies about Iraq.

Hey, here's an idea hot off the presses!  How about making a POSITIVE movie about Iraq.  A movie that CELEBRATES something we have accomplished there. 

Maybe it could deal with an issue like deposing the murderous, terrorist-supporting Saddam, or facilitating free elections (which most Iraqis courageously risked death threats to participate in), or enabling schools to teach something beyond unconditional loyalty to saddam, or preventing Iraq from being a source of funding for international terrorism. 

Do you think they could cobble a script together from any of that?

So far the answer is no.  Better to pull wings off of deaf flies.


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