5.01.2008

Wright and Wrong

It's a shame Barack Obama has had to distance himself from the comments of his pastor, Jeremiah Wright.  This confirms for me that much of America is in denial as to the festering pain - both past and present - that many people of color feel, particularly in our big cities.  Much of America would like to think that while we still have a race issue, it needn't be discussed in such a messy and incendiary way, and it can certainly be gently placed off to the side when we get tired of the topic (and of the discomfort it causes us). 

Except that we're not alright on this issue in America.  I admire Obama's efforts to date: his speech in Philadelphia last month struck an impressive balance between saying that we can sweep race and racism under the rug and allowing it to dominate his campaign.  I don't blame him for wanting to get past all the talk about what his pastor said.  No shame for Obama there; but too bad for the American people, who are so uncomfortable with race and racism that we have to vilify someone in order to placate our own participation in wrong.
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