Brothers and sisters, if it took Obama one week to sever ties with his pastor/father-figure of 20 years to improve his position in the eye of the public, how long will it take him to sever a relationship with the Muslim community which as of today is nonexistent?
United States Senator and presidential candidate Barack Obama has surprised both political analysts and opponents alike with his success (including the support of many Muslim Americans) thus far on the campaign trail. Recently, Sen. Obama managed to surprise even himself regarding a very sticky situation, more specifically the decision he had to make between backing the views of his pastor, and distancing himself from them. He ultimately choose the latter of the two, which some argue was his only option in order to survive politically. Let's be clear: the role that Reverend Jeremiah Wright played in the life of Sen. Barack Obama was by no means a minor one. Wright had been Obama's pastor for more than 20 years. He brought Obama towards Christianity, proceeded over the Senator's wedding, baptized his daughters, and even inspired the title of his book The Audacity of Hope.
The controversy started when short clips of the Reverend surfaced online in which he made remarks labeled as unpatriotic, such as "God Damn America!" Wright recently appeared at the National Press Club where he vehemently defended his remarks. "God doesn't bless everything. God condemns some things. And dem, D-E-M, is where we get the word damn. God damns some practices and there's no excuse for the things that the government, not the American people, have done. That doesn't make me not like America or unpatriotic."
This proved to be the final straw for Obama, as he faced extreme pressure from political opponents and the popular press alike to denounce his pastor. The AP ran a story in which Obama commented on the recent exchange. "When the first snippets came out, I thought it was important to give him the benefit of the doubt, because if I had wanted to be politically expedient, I would have distanced myself and denounced him right away, right? That would have been the easy thing to do," said Obama.
So what is the solution for Muslim America in the upcoming election? A better question that we should be asking ourselves is whether or not there actually IS a solution in the upcoming election. Many make the argument that Obama is the best option for Muslims, the lesser of two evils, and a man of change. The most recent exchange in the media between Obama and Wright highlighted an underlying theme: Obama's willingness to do whatever it takes to win, in this case bowing down to pressure from the media to disown his longstanding relationship with Rev. Wright. A similar line of reasoning is used by Muslims who support Obama, stating that if he openly in any way denounced Israeli foreign policy, or stood for justice in this case, he would have no chance to win.
Brothers and sisters, if it took Obama one week to sever ties with his pastor/father-figure of 20 years to improve his position in the eye of the public, how long will it take him to sever a relationship with the Muslim community which as of today is nonexistent? Reverend Wright was open in his criticisms of the American political system and foreign policy, something that every patriotic American should hold their government accountable for. The moment that we accuse those who challenge the status quo as being "crazy" is when we fall into the trap of those who are subject to the challenge in the first place. It should be of no surprise to us that should we put our faith in such a politician who can cut ties with his closest of friends so easily, that he would not hesitate to cut ties with others should it be to advantage of his political career. As the Honorable Malcolm X so boldly stated, "You put them first and they put you last, because you're a chump."