Monday, April 28, 2008

Reverend Who?

By Alan Caruba

Until Sen. Barack Obama began his run for the presidency who, other than some folks in Chicago, ever heard of Rev. Jeremiah Wright?

The pastor who Obama called his spiritual mentor, who married him and Michelle, who baptized their children, has emerged as one of the most extraordinary characters in the passion play that is the American political drama.

Others around the world look at us and think we’re nuts. This primary season is now into its fourteenth month and has involved what sometimes seems like a cast of thousands, all wanting to be President.

Frankly, I would go nuts having to listen to “Hail to the Chief” every time I entered a room. I suspect the bathroom just off the Oval Office is equipped to play the tune when the toilet seat is raised or lowered.

Let's quickly review some of the candidates and what people focused upon with each. Mitt Romney’s Mormanism. Mike Huckabee’s evangelism—he’s an ordained minister. Obama’s pastor. The most consistent theme has been religion, religion, religion.

This has been leavened by Hillary's Bosnia b00-boo and Dennis Kusinich's admission that he's seen a UFO.

For pure entertainment it doesn’t get much better, but then Rev. Wright comes along with an ego that so dwarfs the candidates that they all end up looking like those circus clowns that spill out of a tiny car while the audience applauds at the sheer wonder of how they all got in there.

As a preacher he is so over the top that you just watch in amazement at the sheer audacity of the man. I have a friend who is a black Baptist minister and, let me tell you, she has two master’s degrees, a wonderful, sweet personality, and is in no way anything like Rev. Wright. She’s about theology, not theatrics.

As for Rev. Wright’s claim that anything negative said about him is an attack on "the black church", well, that’s just sophistry. He’s not fooling anyone.

I loved it most of all when, during his appearance with Bill Moyers, and in his talk at the National Press Club Monday morning, he said that he speaks "as a pastor" and Sen. Obama speaks “as a politician.”

If anyone could make it any more clear that he is calling his most famous communicant a boldfaced liar, doing what politicians are famed for doing, I have not heard it expressed more clearly beyond the accepted acknowledgement—old by now—that both Hillary and Bill Clinton are “accomplished liars.”

All of which brings us to a very big problem for Democrats. They just don’t seem to care! Which liar do you prefer? Rev. Wright’s? Or those who find the Clintons the answer to all their problems?

As improbable as it is that a black man and a white woman are running for the Democrat nomination to be the next president of the United States, no Hollywood screenwriter could have possibly dreamed up a character as self-absorbed and creepy as Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

I personally hope the Democrat race goes down to the wire in Denver. I am having too much fun to want it to end.

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