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March 21st, 2008
10:09 AM ET

The full story behind Rev. Jeremiah Wright's 9/11 sermon

Editor's note: CNN Contributor Roland Martin has listened to several of the sermons of Rev. Jeremiah Wright from Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago. Portions of the sermons have been excerpted in recent stories.

As this whole sordid episode regarding the sermons of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright has played out over the last week, I wanted to understand what he ACTUALLY said in this speech. I've been saying all week on CNN that context is important, and I just wanted to know what the heck is going on.

I have now actually listened to the sermon Rev. Wright gave after September 11 titled, "The Day of Jerusalem's Fall." It was delivered on Sept. 16, 2001.

ALT TEXT

One of the most controversial statements in this sermon was when he mentioned "chickens coming home to roost." He was actually quoting Edward Peck, former U.S. Ambassador to Iraq and deputy director of President Reagan's terrorism task force, who was speaking on FOX News. That's what he told the congregation.

He was quoting Peck as saying that America's foreign policy has put the nation in peril:

"I heard Ambassador Peck on an interview yesterday did anybody else see or hear him? He was on FOX News, this is a white man, and he was upsetting the FOX News commentators to no end, he pointed out, a white man, an ambassador, he pointed out that what Malcolm X said when he was silenced by Elijah Mohammad was in fact true, he said Americas chickens, are coming home to roost.”

"We took this country by terror away from the Sioux, the Apache, Arikara, the Comanche, the Arapaho, the Navajo. Terrorism.

"We took Africans away from their country to build our way of ease and kept them enslaved and living in fear. Terrorism.

"We bombed Grenada and killed innocent civilians, babies, non-military personnel.

"We bombed the black civilian community of Panama with stealth bombers and killed unarmed teenage and toddlers, pregnant mothers and hard working fathers.

"We bombed Qaddafi's home, and killed his child. Blessed are they who bash your children's head against the rock.

"We bombed Iraq. We killed unarmed civilians trying to make a living. We bombed a plant in Sudan to pay back for the attack on our embassy, killed hundreds of hard working people, mothers and fathers who left home to go that day not knowing that they'd never get back home.

"We bombed Hiroshima. We bombed Nagasaki, and we nuked far more than the thousands in New York and the Pentagon and we never batted an eye.

"Kids playing in the playground. Mothers picking up children after school. Civilians, not soldiers, people just trying to make it day by day.

"We have supported state terrorism against the Palestinians and black South Africans, and now we are indignant because the stuff that we have done overseas is now brought right back into our own front yards. America's chickens are coming home to roost.

"Violence begets violence. Hatred begets hatred. And terrorism begets terrorism. A white ambassador said that y'all, not a black militant. Not a reverend who preaches about racism. An ambassador whose eyes are wide open and who is trying to get us to wake up and move away from this dangerous precipice upon which we are now poised. The ambassador said the people we have wounded don't have the military capability we have. But they do have individuals who are willing to die and take thousands with them. And we need to come to grips with that."

He went on to describe seeing the photos of the aftermath of 9/11 because he was in Newark, N.J., when the planes struck. After turning on the TV and seeing the second plane slam into one of the twin towers, he spoke passionately about what if you never got a chance to say hello to your family again.

"What is the state of your family?" he asked.

And then he told his congregation that he loved them and asked the church to tell each other they loved themselves.

His sermon thesis:

1. This is a time for self-examination of ourselves and our families.

2. This is a time for social transformation (then he went on to say they won't put me on PBS or national cable for what I'm about to say. Talk about prophetic!)

"We have got to change the way we have been doing things as a society," he said.

Wright then said we can't stop messing over people and thinking they can't touch us. He said we may need to declare war on racism, injustice, and greed, instead of war on other countries.

"Maybe we need to declare war on AIDS. In five minutes the Congress found $40 billion to rebuild New York and the families that died in sudden death, do you think we can find the money to make medicine available for people who are dying a slow death? Maybe we need to declare war on the nation's healthcare system that leaves the nation's poor with no health coverage? Maybe we need to declare war on the mishandled educational system and provide quality education for everybody, every citizen, based on their ability to learn, not their ability to pay. This is a time for social transformation."

3. This is time to tell God thank you for all that he has provided and that he gave him and others another chance to do His will.

By the way, nowhere in this sermon did he said "God damn America." I'm not sure which sermon that came from.

This doesn't explain anything away, nor does it absolve Wright of using the N-word, but what it does do is add an accurate perspective to this conversation.

The point that I have always made as a journalist is that our job is to seek the truth, and not the partial truth.

I am also listening to the other sermons delivered by Rev. Wright that have been the subject of controversy.

And let me be clear: Where I believe he was wrong and not justified in what he said based upon the facts, I will say so. But where the facts support his argument, that will also be said.

So stay tuned.

[odeo=http://odeo.com/audio/17889043/view]

– Roland S. Martin, CNN Contributor
www.rolandsmartin.com

Editor's note: Read other blogs from Roland Martin and the team of 360 contributors at CNN.com/360


Filed under: Barack Obama • Roland S. Martin
soundoff (246 Responses)
  1. Drury Armistead

    The minister's statements are correct. Sorry folks.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:23 am |
  2. Joseph

    I agree with you Larry.
    CNN distort reality to help Hillary. It's a Shame.
    I switch to MSNBC which was more objective in their reports, but for my surprise the reason because I didn't want to watch CNN that was Tucker (Who pay more Money- Tucker) was also invited to give his hatred opinions in most of MSNBC shows. Tucker go home you are the worst.
    America hate you!

    March 21, 2008 at 11:23 am |
  3. Benjamin Preisner

    Thank you for diving into the immediate context of Revered Wright's Speech concerning 9/11. I believe, however, the context to this whole issue is much larger, is about religion more than race, and the judgment of the American people about this story will develop over many years and from a true understanding of many points of view.

    There is much truth in the greater issue at hand. I am less interested in looking at it racially. It deserves to elicit conversation that critiques the way our government, media and Western ideologies are not always open to alternative perspectives, especially those emanating from various global religions. It would be interesting to hear what someone like Ex Prime Minister Tony Blair thinks about this whole topic. He will be teaching on the subject at Yale starting next year.

    As Yale President Richard C. Levin stated: “The appointment of Mr. Blair provides a tremendous opportunity for our students and our community. As the world continues to become increasingly inter-dependent, it is essential that we explore how religious values can be channeled toward reconciliation rather than polarization. Mr. Blair has demonstrated outstanding leadership in these areas and is especially qualified to bring his perspective to bear. We are honored that he is planning to join the Yale community.”

    I hope that the dialogue resulting from the speech of Reverend Wright will channel better understandings and reconciliation between different perspectives. I applaud Senator Obama for not closing the door on his connections to Wright. I see Wright's speech and the general reaction to it as expressed in the media and election polls BOTH examples of the polarization expressed in President Levin's statement.

    As for my opinion with respect to whom I believe this country needs as President: Hillary Clinton, without a doubt. Saying that, I believe Obama’s inexperience would do harm if he were to hold this position after this election. While we need him as a public leader, but we need him to not be President even more. And if to say such a thing is construed by some as racially biased, such a conclusion, I believe, has nothing to do with the Reverend Wright.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:23 am |
  4. Brad

    Anderson,

    After reporting on this storyevery single night for a week now, why is this finally coming out. Now that everyone's attention is shifted to Passportgate, this will most likely not get much air time. After assassinating Rev. Wright's characterr for a week now, it is time for the media to come clean and appologize for reporting this story without checking the sermon out first. It was always there for you to listen to. Why has it taken you this long to finally listen to it. As I recall, you missed a day or two having a minor procedure, why didn't you listen to the sermon then?

    This kind of irresponsible journalism as harmed the campaign of Barack Obama. Now that it turns out that these "inflamatory" comments were made by a white republican, let's go after all those consrvatives that are calling for Rev. Wright's head on a platter. This also makes me wonder what the context of the "God damn America" comments were. Can they also be traced to another white Republican?

    March 21, 2008 at 11:23 am |
  5. Dave

    Honest reporting is all I ask and what the country needs. Thanks!

    March 21, 2008 at 11:23 am |
  6. Ed

    Roland,
    You said
    "I am also listening to the other sermons delivered by Rev. Wright that have been the subject of controversy.

    And let me be clear: Where I believe he was wrong and not justified in what he said based upon the facts, I will say so."

    I hope that is true, even when the context doesn't support Obama or the Rev. Also, quoting somebody does not disavow a person from the content and intent of the quoted material, unless they clearly state they disagree with it. Rev Wright and Amabassodr Peck both meant the inent of those words, and both are wrong.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:23 am |
  7. JEAN HORNE

    I heard this minister say" It is not God Bless America, It is God Damn
    America." Also I can not believe this is the first sermon that has been
    so radical. There are race issues on both sides. However with this
    person being Obama's minister, he could do better with an enemy.
    Are we to believe that this has been his minister for a number of years
    and he supported a church connected with this person? He spews
    vulgarity and racism at an alter and should be excommnicated.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:23 am |
  8. Alex from IL

    1 week later: Context. Nice to suddenly get it now.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:23 am |
  9. Dale

    Give me a break – hatred and reverse racism was speered, yet we're to worried about slaying their great black hope. Mrs Obama is evidence of the hatred most blacks feel toward whites yet slavery around the world exists and not one black person stands up against it because there is no affirmative action.

    Look at how rich blacks perform – rappers and sports stars leave the mothers of their children and go off and find more woman to screw. Black woman should be in arms yet they are too poor to fight back.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:23 am |
  10. Kat

    I have a great idea, how about getting some context and background BEFORE you report a story. But no, that would have kept CNN from running the money clips for a week and a half, and trying to damage a flawed, yes, but also decent man who has served and spoken out for the poor for decades.

    My contempt for the 24 hour news media could not possibly be greater.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:23 am |
  11. Rosalind, California

    Thank you for finally looking at the whole picture. I am a white female, 43 who instantly understood there must be some context to this. It is very sad that we are still living with prejudice and the worst assumptions – with the help of the media and soundbites this has changed the conversation to one man and one or two lines of literally thousands of sermons.

    Don't forget this pastor, served as a Marine in the US military,has a distinguished following in a 90% white UCC church around the country.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:22 am |
  12. darby

    I support Obama for President. That said, I have a hard time imagining Rev. Wright as Obama's Billy Graham with easy access to the White House. Obama should distance himself even further from this man, perhaps by doing something that highlights his current pastor who I hope is not a loose cannon. Those clips of Wright have hurt Obama and the Swift Boat machine will use them to great effect should Barack overcome Hillary.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:22 am |
  13. Tracy

    Nothing, nothing justifies Rev. Wright's incendiary comments. CNN should just come out and endores Obama and stop the charade that you are an "independent" minded organization.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:22 am |
  14. Barbara

    If the general population is going to accept the media's use snippets and sound bites that totally distort the context of larger words and works, then we should also expect that clarifications such as this are broadcast as well. While not condoning his choice of words, this puts Rev Wright's comments into a totally different light ~ and if we were perfectly honest and not swayed by the political mode of the day, how many Americans of ANY color would have to admit to having shared the same thoughts as expressed here? We may not have used the same wording, we may have expressed our concern in less vitriolic terms, and we may only have shared our thoughts within the "safety" of close family and friends. My family has served proudly and militarily through each generation since the American Revolution, and in spite of being "old and white", these sentiments have emerged more than once in conversation. Concern over the arrogance of American policy worldwide is well-warranted ~ we are a great and wonderful country, but our leadership has become self-serving and many of us have become complacent. We need to work harder to turn the tide of sentiment against us ~acting "indignant" and pointing fingers is not the way to do it!

    March 21, 2008 at 11:22 am |
  15. ayodele

    would someone give this to Joe Scarborough (MSNBC) so he can – get over it.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:22 am |
  16. Nick, Washington DC

    You really think that the more complete version makes Wright look better? I think it makes him look worse. Have we all forgotten the shock that this country felt in the aftermath of 9/11? For this clown to recite a litany of our misdeeds in that atmosphere, only a few days after the event, is a clear indication that he despises this country..........his congregation should have walked out but instead they stood and applauded. What would Barack have done had been there?

    March 21, 2008 at 11:22 am |
  17. David

    Thanks Roland,

    Let the truth be told.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:22 am |
  18. Tod

    Another example of liberal media trying to sweep something like this under the rug. If Wright were associated with a Republican, I doubt the author would be so willing to "seek the truth".

    March 21, 2008 at 11:22 am |
  19. KJChicago

    Roland, you can nix words, play with them, try and sum them up the way you want them heard but it does not and you do not speak for Rev. Wright or Barack Obama.

    I live in this country (America) and I do not get to say everything I want, it's called restraint. There is no way that you can make this right and no everyone does not need to visit Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, no, everyone does not sit through or spend years at a church and expose their family to through sermons like this. The only people who do are those who agree with the message. Others know how to discern and leave.

    Stop trying to sell this as the way African American churches and ministers conduct services. The message from Rev. Wright was not a Christian message.

    You want to know when we will move forward as African Americans. When we stop having commentators such as you make excuses for what is wrong for personal gain. Slavery and Black History in America is not up for sell, it's not a marketing tool to use every time one of us is caught in something or somewhere we should not be.

    Stop getting angry and over talking other commentators about this issue.

    Leave it alone....you're only making things worse.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:21 am |
  20. Mark, Texas

    Here's to looking at words in the context they were meant. Something the media should do more often and not just when it suits a higher purpose.
    Look, I don't understand why people cannot accept the fact that the only time race is an issue is when dealing with the "human" race. Ask any genetisist and they will tell you that not only are there no genetic markers for race but the fact is that every human on this planet can be genetically traced back to two original humans from eastern africa. Yes, like it or not, we are one, big, happy family.
    If one takes the time to study those of great wisdom in our history you will see that same message comes through regardless of the religious, political or cultural trappings surrounding it. That message is "Love each other and love your god." And if you don't have a god then simply refer to the former.
    Learn from your history and you will come to realize that the power of the human race is only limited by our inability to work in harmony with other humans. True power comes from what you do in cooperation and not in competition.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:21 am |
  21. Jeannette

    This may be true of this speech but as we all know this is not the only speech he has given. I find it very curious that Roland would choose this speech to analyze and not another, more controversial one. I have seen several of his speeches in the last 2 weeks and Rev. Wright does make "difficult to hear" points that are right on but.... he also says things like "God Damn America" and many more horrifying statements that disgusted me. Let's be real this is article is "truth" for this speech how about an article on all his speeches. I am sure you will not have any problem finding them... they're everywhere.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:21 am |
  22. Mary

    Democrats UNITE!!! We are being swiftboated by the Republican media.

    I went and istened to many, many sermons of Rev. Wrights this past weekend and they are all about the Bible and Jesus. The media has this wrong!

    March 21, 2008 at 11:21 am |
  23. rafa

    He was actually quoting Malcolm X's "Chickens coming home to roost" speech.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:21 am |
  24. Melissa

    I wish CNN had done this a week ago.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:21 am |
  25. chad

    First, I dont remember asking this CNN contributor/commentator to be the "truth teller." The problem in our country is the lack of discernment on the part of people in the pew. Folks are willing to accept carte blanche what they hear each Sunday from the pulpt. This is why men like Jeremiah Wright and others are able to get away with unleashing truths which are no where found in our Bible. They have made the pulpit a place for to talk about politics and social issues. If you understand the place of the New Testament chuch –and by the way our Lord Jesus does not parse that into churches of Black or white. Jeremiah Wright is doing what many mainline churches do and that it to preach a social gospel. Oh, dont' get me wrong you find Christ talking about feeding the poor, taking care of the sick etc...But, a thorough survey of the NT epistles finds that the church is called to be the pillar and suppport of the Truth. What truth is that? The truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It is the pure unadulterated Gospel which says "All have sinned." That's the bad news. However, the good news is God provided a way to ransom people from their sins thru the death of his Son. Perhaps, someone could post a few clips of the Reverend Wright talking to his folks about repentance of sin and the hope found in the person of Jesus Christ!!! That, my friends is the "Power of God." Romans 1. Thanks for reading.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:21 am |
  26. tuan

    this is t ypical sterotype when it comes to racism.. seemed to me african men can say anything against the the other races without being scrutinized.. one should asked the question where is the judgements of obama while he sat in that church for 20 years? where is his conscious when his preacher gave some anti americans and hatred rhetoric? americans should wake up and denounce these rhetoric and stay away from fake preacher obama..

    March 21, 2008 at 11:21 am |
  27. Charles Stoy

    I wonder if in fact he did say GD America now. Did someone splice together those statements? How much alteration has occurred with those?

    As for the Clinton people, CNN has frequently requested access or information or time with the idea of fairness and equal access (it is a federal law remember). Her campaign has turned the press down and refused access when they cannot control what is said, asked or how it is reported.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:21 am |
  28. Sweet Wendelina

    I am so glad that you are able and willing to find context to Wright's speech! I wish that everyone of us would do that with all issues, and that the media (all of them including CNN) would just check all the sources before broadcasting these clips over, and over, and over again, which not only hurt Obama, but also create hate, and even more divide in race relations in America. It is time for all of us to move on. Let's concentrate on what each candidate's important issues and make our wise decisions about our future president. This country has so much at stake that it can't be distracted.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:21 am |
  29. Sharon

    Mr. Martin, thank you for providing the context of remarks that have been viewed as utterly reprehensible. Just as CNN along with other media outlets provided the sound bites that have re-focused the campaign of the best Presidential candidate in the race, this should be aired. The media should be more responsible, just as the candidate speeches are aired in entirety so as not to be misinterpreted/misrepresented, this should be aired as well. This story has distorted Americas view of the Reverend Wright and it may just be unjustified. That is also reprehensible.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:21 am |
  30. Adrienne

    Hey Roland. Just the fact that you took the time to provide the content of the full sermon speaks largly to the fact that you see the need to provide everyone with the FULL STORY and not a partial story which CNN and every other network has been doing. It's been pretty pathetic that the media has blown this totally out of proportion for their own benefit. So please pass on to your CNN folks that Americans for the most part are a whole lot more intelligent that what they give us credit to be and that our support of Obama is unwavered. We see the difference between he and the rest of Washington, including Clinton in particular who will stop at nothing for POWER. We've got his back. He's a good man and we need him.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:21 am |
  31. Tita

    I have really appreciated your input and insight into our world.
    Your voice is unique, smart, thoughtful and wise. Keep going.
    Keep them honest, for real.

    Kind Regards,
    Tita

    March 21, 2008 at 11:21 am |
  32. Mark

    Though I am not a supporter in any way, the fact that when George W. Bush was asked how he came upon the decisions he did after the 9/11 attacks, he stated that he referred back to his spiritual upbringing. This upbrining was greatly influenced by his spiritual leaders that spoke to him for years upon years. What bothers me the most about what has come to light about this spiritual leader is the hatred of not one but several of his speeches towards several aspects of our community and culture. It would be hard for me to imagine that when dire times occured, these messages of hatred wouldn't be reflected in his ministries revelations, including that of Obama who has been apart of his congregation for over 20 years. How can he not say that within those 20 years of sermons, these points and issues from the reverenc won't truly affect him in troubled times... in which our country is already in.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:21 am |
  33. Terry Frakes

    I would expect this from you!!! What is sad, is how can anyone really support this guy? I dont get it, he listened to this guy shoot down and lie and cheat about americans and then he preaches to all of us that he is the best man to bring americans together. What a crock of sh–t!!! Then again, not to many do at this point anyway. I really dont know how he could resepectively take the nomination if he was to get it. Knowing he got it on hidden secrets. To me and many others i spoke to, would feel ashamed to take that honor knowing he had lied to everyone about uniting everyone, when all he really has on his agenda is to prove to the African Americans that he is the first black president and he will make sure they are all taken care of. For Gods sake, look whats happening? He is bombing out and the unfortunate part is, its going to be a struggle for Hillary, and whats worse,not only did he cost the democrats the election, McCain will now be the next president!!! Thanks Obama!! Lets hope Hillary can still go the length. im sure, we havent heard the last of Obamas secrets....

    March 21, 2008 at 11:20 am |
  34. Richard Kronk

    Roland,

    You are correct, everthing said by Rev. Wright should be reviewed in the full context of each respective speech. Thanks for setting forth what he said. I disagree with your limited and one-sided opinion of what you think his thesis was. You left out the most important one.

    The Rev was clearly saying the US government is and has acted as a terrorist and he specifically enumerates the examples. Granted the US has not always done good things i.e. the American Indian and slavery. This Country has always tried to do the right thing and while not perfect we are better than any other country. But to bring up terrorism in the view of the nuke attacks on Japan during WWII. Come on. Yes innocent people were killed but how many lives on both sides were saved by forcing Japan to a prompt surrender? A mainland attack and resistance like we saw on several of the islands would have guaranteed total destruction of Japan and led to millions more deaths and casualties.

    The Rev clearly does not like US government. or policy. That should be pointed out instead of the suger coating you try to put on it.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:20 am |
  35. mark reagan

    I do not recall any outrage directed at Ambassador Peck or, indirectly at President Reagan for his stark comments. If Barack Obama or any candidate referenced the Peck comments without full attribution to the ambassador, they would be ruined. With attribution, they would be ruined. With the reference back to President Reagan, they would be ruined. President Reagan would have supported the ambassador, much as Senator Obama has supported the Reverend while denouncing his truly objectionable comments. I was raised in a large Irish household. The heroes in my life, my father, grandfather, uncles, great uncles were all good men who, at the same time, used every racial and ethnic insult imaginable. I loved them and love them still, but their language was and is reprehensible. We must heal and unite as one America.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:20 am |
  36. Tami in Missouri

    I am beyond pleased to see that someone in the MSM is digging deeper into Rev. Wright's sermons. I watched a few today of those that were taken out of context, and I feel horribly that this man has become vilified and hated over 30-second sound bites taken out of context. He isn't anti-American. He isn't anti-white. He may be anti-Bush. He may have problems with this current administration. And he certainly has reason to be angry.

    But we shouldn't be blaming him for things he isn't.

    Maybe the MSM should compare his sermons with words out of people like Falwell and Robertson and Phelps and so who truly preaches about hate.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:20 am |
  37. Pat

    I watched last night as David Gergen, Anderson Cooper, Roland Martin, and Carl Bernstein discussed Obama's recent comment about his grandmother. It was a proud moment for CNN. If Obama's speech helped to raise the level of discourse for the remainder of the campaign at your network, that, I believe, is a great start for doing the same throughout the country. CNN has made an important decision to return to its days of real news and intelligent discussions. There are plenty of tabloid outlets for insignificant sensation.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:20 am |
  38. Mel

    Over the last few weeks, and especially in the past week, I have seen Roland go to battle for the truth – what Pastor Wright really said, how Barack is the once in a lifetime unifier and how we must overcome racial tensions and stereotypes.
    I want to commend you, Roland! You have challenged other experts on Lou Dobb's program (and Lou himself at times) in the face of much adversity and you have had more success on Campbell's program and Cooper's program. Well done for speaking the truth! I am a Canadian observer of the current democratic political situation in America and I believe the honesty, intergity and wisdom in Americans will shine through – in no small part due to the contribution and fair reporting of folks like you! Keep up the good work as the "voice of reason".

    March 21, 2008 at 11:20 am |
  39. Karen, TN

    Roland, thanks for providing us with the context. That makes so much of difference. It's doesn't excuse the man necessarily, but it helps me understand what he was trying to say even though I don't agree with it. I can't tell you how many times I've been reading an article I find particularly informative and well written and I get to the bottom and find out it was written by Roland S. Martin. Keep up the good work.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:20 am |
  40. S. Yacenda

    Reverand Wright was courageous and expressed what Bush and Cheney want to marginalize, that there was a reason for terrorism on our soil that needs to be publicly recognized and apologized for. While making apology for the USA covert and overt terrorism perpetrated around the globe as well as within our own border, make one for the terrorism against, and the genocide of, the red race - the original people on this land. For Senator Obama was mistaken when he spoke in his recent address on race that our original sin was black slavery. Not true. The original sin in this nation's history was and still is practiced today - the American Holocaust from 1492 to the Present of the red race (and resources we claim as our own). I hope you have the courage to breech this subject which is not what most including Barack Obama understand but what we do need to think about because it is the truth.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:19 am |
  41. Morti

    We have supported state terrorism against the Palestinians and black South Africans

    -

    Lies! Support for Israel is not bad. They were almost exterminated by the Nazis . Anti-Semites!

    And if you recall the USA banned diamonds from South Africa.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:19 am |
  42. AIrvine

    More and more with all the coverage Cooper and CNN gives Obama I think they are trying to twist the coverage to help this guy get elected. CNN and Cooper you are just as bad if not worse than Fox News. I assume you feel that is balanced politics.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:19 am |
  43. Steve, VA

    Thanks for the complete story. I still support Obama, but if anyone wants an education on his pastor's ideology, go read some James Cone, whose philosophy (black liberation theology) is repeatedly referenced by Rev. Wright. It's as delusional as it is racist.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:19 am |
  44. Kurt Hansen

    Rev. Wright was dead on in his speech.

    President Bush missed an opportunity after 9/11 that comes once in a millennium. He could have put his faith into action. He could have chosen the path of peace, of forgiving your enemies, of not throwing the first stone, of preparing the fatted calf. Given how much the world and the American people backed him, he could have taken that path. He could have tried to further God's plan as explained to us in word and deed by Jesus Christ.

    Instead, he chose the human path. One of revenge, war, doing to the evil doers what they had coming to them. The path brought into Christianity by the Romans, the barbarians, and by my ancestors, the Vikings.

    My greatest fury with George W. Bush is that he missed that opportunity. It may have been true that God wanted him to be president, precisely because of that millennial moment. Unfortunately, when the time came, the courage of his convictions failed him.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:19 am |
  45. white woman

    Thank you Mr. R. Martin.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:19 am |
  46. Jackie

    Gee wouldn't it be wonderful if Hillary Clinton or John Edwards would have had the number of surrogates sitting in the national media that Mr Obama has.

    Roland as a minister, please explain to me what effect some of the attacking, angry, and haterful language that Rev Wright uses may have long term on young children.

    I have sat in Black Baptist churches many times here in Texas. I think it is a disservice to the Black congregations and church members all over the country to try and have America believe that Rev Wright is representative of them.

    I think it is an abberration and contradiction for people to try and explain the very words and ideas that Obama has said he disagrees with and denounces.

    You can't have it both ways either he's preaching hate and Obama disagrees with it or It's acceptable in a Black church and White America just doesn't "get it".

    March 21, 2008 at 11:18 am |
  47. Bob

    This is not the full picture. If you want to see the other sermons, they are all over the news (including on CNN), including the 'God Damn America' sermon.

    Whether or not he clearly and directly states a message of hate / discrimination, the underlying theme is not exactly positive. The effect of his sermons is to polarize his church, with him as leader, thus creating the cult of personality he needs to maintain his own lifestyle. Joy.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:18 am |
  48. Susan

    Thank you for putting the facts straight......Rev. Wright spoke the absolute truth...
    Signed...
    White middle ages baby boomer....

    March 21, 2008 at 11:18 am |
  49. Lee Wiegand

    Thank you, Roland and 360 for having the journalistic integrity to tell us about the whole context. I wish all the cable news outlets who have been playing this 30-second sound byte out of its context over and over again would do the same. Perhaps then, although we might still not agree with the pastor, at least our analysis and our reactions would be so much more rational than what we've been left with by the prejudicial treatment which has damaged so many.

    March 21, 2008 at 11:18 am |
  50. Kealee

    Rock on Roland! I am so happy to see someone actually looking for the truth! Why haven't I seen this reported on major network national news??

    March 21, 2008 at 11:18 am |
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