05 March 2009
|Why Do Some Black Leaders ‘Hate’ President Obama|
Other noted Black conservatives like Walter Williams and Thomas Sowell have attacked Obama as "lacking in character, values and understanding," and "is himself a lie."
On the journalistic front, they've been joined by Juan Williams, prize winning author of "Eyes on the Prize," national correspondent for National Public Radio, and frequent commentator on Fox News' sunday and The O'Reilly Factor.
Williams, originally thought to be politically moderate, has distressed many in both the liberal and African-American communities with his remarks about both President Obama, and First Lady Michelle Obama.
In March 2008 during the height of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright controversy, Williams was frequently appearing on Fox News blasting Obama for remaining a member of Wright's church for 20 years.
"This is the closest Black people have ever been to having a president of the United States of America. And suddenly you see, wait a second, he's playing games and corners here on the race question. He's not being straight ahead and saying, "You know what, I stand astride racial polarization.' He's saying, "I play racial polarization at one moment to my advantage - Reverend Wright - next moment I will distance myself and disavow Reverend Wright when that's convenient, too," Williams said.
None other than arch-conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh, famous for playing the "Barack the Magic Negro" song on his program and calling Obama a "half-rican" because his mother was White and his father was a black African, applauded Williams charge of dishonesty against Obama.
Recently after the inauguration, Williams was forced to apologize when he suggested on Fox's The O'Reilly Factor that First Lady Michelle Obama "she's got this Stokely Carmichael-in-a-designer-dress thing going. If she starts talking her instinct is to start with this "blame America,' you know, I'm the victim. If that stuff starts to come out - people will go bananas."
NPR, Williams primary employer, was so deluged with complaints about Williams remarks on Fox, that the company formerly asked Fox to no longer identify Williams association with NPR during his appearances. He was forced to apologize, and now there's pressure to have him fired from NPR.
The brazen attacks on Pres. Obama haven't been limited to just politics and commentators. Several Black ministers have gotten in on the act, using the Bible to say some of the most outlandish things about the historymaker.
Conservative Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson, a frequent guest with Sean Hannity on Fox News Channel, heads up a Los Angeles-based organization called BOND Action, Inc. He has issued "10 Reasons to Fear an Obama Nation" which include "dangerous, corrupt appointments; surrender in the war on terror; perpetuating genocide against the unborn; and unrestrained socialism which he further describes as "turning America into a ghetto."
Peterson is known for saying that only Republicans and conservatives can be Christian, and "96 percent of Black people are racist" towards Whites. When preachers like T.D. Jakes and pastor Shirley Caesar hailed President Obama's victory, Rev. Peterson publicly attacked them as "worshiping the wrong Messiah."
But even Peterson's rhetoric is nothing compared to fiery attacks leveled by Rev. James David Manning, pastor of Atlah Worldwide Church in Harlem, NY.
Rev. Manning, who has made numerous radio and television appearances, and can be seen on YouTube online, made headlines last year for saying that Obama "was born trash" because he had a White mother and Black African father. He has also called Obama a "mack-daddy."
"He got started" you didn't notice him 'til he brought out those big-chested white women with their tight T-shirts and their short pants," Rev. Manning preaches in one of his infamous videos. "That's what a pimp does. He's a mack daddy. He pimps white women and Black women. Obama is a long-legged mack daddy."
Rev. Manning has also alleged that every speech Pres. Obama has made is tinged with his "hatred for America" and white people.
Recently, Manning has alleged that "the jury is still out on whether Obama is black or not," and suggested that Blacks really had nothing to be proud of in his election.
Amazingly, Manning does have a growing following, thanks to the Internet.
Black Republicans like new GOP chair Michael Steele have taken shots at Obama in the past, and still do, but mostly those jibes are political in nature and rarely as deeply personal.
Many analysts say that what many of Obama's critics have in common is that they are virtually divorced from the African-American community. They have no real base of Black support. Intellectuals like Shelby Steele and Walter Williams work at high profile universities and conservative think tanks, so their salaries are paid by whites, not Blacks.
That's one of the reasons why when they attack Obama or anyone else in the black community, they are seen as doing so from outside of the community, and thus, get no respect from inside.
The list of Black notables who have sought to personally and politically diminish Barack Obama is by no means limited to conservatives, a fact proven in January 2008 during the South Carolina Democratic presidential primary when billionaire Black Entertainment Television founder Robert Johnson, a Hillary Clinton friend and supporter, tried to undermine Obama, telling an audience that then candidate Sen. Clinton and her husband, former president Bill Clinton, "have been deeply and emotionally involved in black issues when Barack Obama was doing something in the neighborhood; I won't say what he was doing, but he said it in his book when they have been involved."
Johnson was making a thinly veiled reference to Obama's published admission of drug and alcohol usage as a troubled youth. Johnson later apologized, but three months later, bashed Obama again when he said that if Obama were White, he wouldn't be leading the Democratic primary race over Clinton.
Conservatives, both Black and White, were enjoying the free-for-all as Black Democrats seemed to line up to take cheap potshots at the young, foreign-named political rookie who dared to say he wanted to be the next Commander-in-chief.
When then Sen. Obama prepared to face-off against Sen. Clinton and others in the primaries in December 2007, former Atlanta Mayor Andrew Young, a close lieutenant to slain civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., made it clear during a television interview that as far as he was concerned, the Illinois senator was an upstart and lightweight.
Referring to former Pres. Bill Clinton's alleged philandering in an effort to question how Black Obama was, Young, in an apparent tasteless dig, said, "Bill is every bit as Black as Barack. He's probably gone with more Black women than Barack."
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