March 14th, 2008
05:42 PM ET

Obama answers critics on 360° tonight

We had been working on this story all day  – the controversy over Barack Obama’s pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

360° tonight

Anderson talks with Democratic Presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama, responding to his pastor’s firestorm of controversy. 360° Tonight, 10p ET.

Rev. Wright recently had this to say, "Hillary was not a black boy raised in a single parent home, Barack was.  Barack knows what it means to be a black man living in a country and a culture that is controlled by rich white people. Hillary, Hillary ain’t never been called a n*****!  Hillary has never had her people defined as a non-person.”

Harsh words from a man Obama has called his spiritual mentor (he officiated the Obamas’ wedding and baptized their two children).  Yesterday, Sen. Obama was not commenting, so our plan for tonight was to run a story looking at the history of this kind of rhetoric in black churches and what Rev. Wright’s comments could mean for the his most famous congregation member.

But late in the day, the Obama campaign had a change of heart, offering up the Senator himself to address the issue.  So we’ll have that tonight, Anderson and Senator Obama responding to his pastor’s firestorm of controversy.

Program note: Anderson Cooper 360° airs live at 10p ET on CNN

Filed under: Barack Obama
soundoff (505 Responses)
  1. kristy

    I just don't see that these sermons are that bad if you analyze it carefully. He says Barack does not fit the mold because he is not white, rich or privileged. He says Hillary doesn't understand the plight of a black man. Both statements are true. The other clip shown on CNN Is when he blames the US for 9/11 – well he is not the first white or black person to say this. Also I can understand that it is a difficult decision to change churches if your family has close friends and Sunday school teachers your kids enjoy.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:27 am |
  2. katherine ainsworth

    It's unfortunate that a pastor would spread a form of racism in the house of the Lord.

    I don't get it.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:26 am |
  3. Cathy Edwards Belle Rose, Louisiana

    I would be curious to know just how many Americans even know what church our current President attends, what his religious affiliation is and what types of sermons he is hearing on Sunday mornings? Afterall, President Bush did say God had moved him to engage in some of his current very frightening policies. Maybe we should be going to his place of worship and verifying just what "god" he's serving.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:26 am |
  4. Adrienne

    Why don't reporters thoroughly investigate Obama to find any inflammatory remarks that the candidate himself has made in any of his own speeches that in any way reflects or echoes the rantings of this Rev. Wright.? That would be a better use of a reporter's time and resources. Has Senator Obama used any of the crap this pastor has said in his own rhetoric? That is what the public deserves to know and what a responsible reporter should be looking for.....

    March 15, 2008 at 12:25 am |

    People keep using the word UN-AMERICAN, is it Un- American to mistreat an entire race? Is it Un-American to discriminate against someone with a Moslem name? Ok, well, before everyone decides to turn the story around, think about what you are really doing. A black minister is not wrong for being angry at how Hillary has made this a racist attack campaine against Barack. Yall, need to be getting on Hillary for her blatent attack on Obamas name, race, etc. How is that American? Is she allowed to get away with it because she is White? This is blatend discrimination when you talk about someones name, or religion. If Obama does not win,(due to her scemes) trust me, blacks wont be voting for her!

    March 15, 2008 at 12:21 am |
  6. Yolanda

    I don't know which I'm more saddened by the media or the ignorance of America. A pastor that has preached for over 30 years has been reduced to 3 min excerpts of 2 sermons. In regards to what was stated about Hillary's experiences vs Barack's ...what about those statements was untrue. Until you can put yourself in the shoes of a Black man, you can't know his experiences. I don't believe that Barack is a believer of his teachings. To accept a hatred mentatlity of white people and the white race would be to deny himself and the woman that gave him life. Pastor Wright teaches of Black self reliance and not a mindset of separatism. I wonder if he preached of Blacks remaining on welfare if it would have received as much air time. To be a Black man of a mixed race named Barack Obama and to speak of bringing this country together, despite our differences, and to place yourself and family under the scrutiny of people who belittle and question your experiences and love of country and operate on a guilt by association mentality and you still choose love of country and run for President. I believe him when he says that HE LOVES THIS COUNTRY!! For those of you who don't see that... you deserve another 4 years of John "Bush" McCain politics.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:21 am |
  7. Lexie

    Did you ever think that Obama is telling the truth, he did hear his minister speak like this before and brought it to his attention and informed him he would not attend the church if this is the language he is going to use. As Obama said, he was not there at the time the minister made those tapes. So, is it hard to believe the minister knew he was going to make tapes on those days and Barack did not attend the services????? When I see the tapes on TV, hmmmmm, I have seen a few white people in the congregation applauding, hmmmmm, how can that be. I guess they are blinded? I find it hard to believe Barack would allow his daughters to grow up racist, especially when they go to visit their white grandmother. Or I guess, he tells them she along with his sister, are exceptions. Come on people are you so nieve to believe everything you hear in the media. I'm glad I can think for myself and I don't allow the media or anyone else to make up my own mind.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:20 am |
  8. pg

    Jim, I thought he answered the question, even though I thought it was a "silly question". Why was it necessary? The question itself showed either the intelligence of the asker or that the asker knew there are a lot of unintelligent american viewers.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:20 am |
  9. Rev. John F. Johnson

    Why dont we let the voters decide this election and not the media

    March 15, 2008 at 12:19 am |
  10. ee

    This was a Christmas message? Who in their right mind would preach this ignorance. There is no excuse for this this type of message. Obama becoming our president scares me. What could happen to our country with this type of leadership. Right now Mr. Wright has been removed as an Obama spiritual advisor. What happens if Obama becomes president? Does he invite Rev. Wright to the White House? Will he be the Rev. standing next to him in an inaguration? Who will stop Obama then?

    March 15, 2008 at 12:19 am |
  11. Michael Gabriel

    People attend churches for many reasons. Some go to church for social status while others go for political connections. Some go to learn the scripture while others go to hear provocative speeches. Still others are comforted by soothing word and pageantry from the pulpit. Pastors of some of the wealthiest churches know how to fill the pews and the offering plates providing a “memorable” church service.

    What constitutes a “memorable” service varies from community to community, church to church, issue to issue. The enjoyment (not tolerance) of religious freedom and all that it brings is what America stands for.

    While the media opens the door for discussions of this private matter, politicians should be cautions when entering, lest this fundamental freedom be jeopardized

    March 15, 2008 at 12:19 am |
  12. Matt

    Reading the vitriol, hate and stupidity on these forums make me so ashamed to be American. It is ok for Clinton to take money from Norman Hsu, Dubai, and China. It is ok for Clinton and her group to scream racist filth into the news on a daily basis, but if anyone cries foul they are playing the race card. If anyone gets offended they are the racists.
    If friends and supporters of Hillary shout racist filth it is ok they are just old ladies and it doesn't matter BUT if an Obama supporter did it 6 years ago it is somehow news again and again and again and again.
    May you get what you desire, it is the end of the democratic party anyway.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:18 am |
  13. zig

    the issue in this campaign should not be about stuff like what who's pastor has said. It should be about the issues the Americans are facing and what candidate is offering the best plan.

    To pick a candidate just because we did not like one's age, sex, religion as well as pastor's comments is simply wrong.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:16 am |
  14. Linda Hall

    If Senator Obama is anything like me & my household, he goes to church to praise the Lord. In the Black Baptist community (I can't speak for white folks, Catholic, Evangelicals & the likes) every church is independent. If you change church every time you disagree with the pastor, you'll find your self changing churches every week. So you pick the church that allows you to just worship the Lord. The church is very democratic in that sense. If you got mad everytime you disagreed with the pastor, your life would be disrupted constantly. So you stay, and you pray that God hears your prayers because after all, it’s not about the preacher, it's about your personal relationship with God. Most likely, if you stay there, you will worship under the pastorage of 3, 4 or 5 different preachers before you die and then are buried there by your church family (people who have sat on the same pew with you since you were in Sunday school). Black folks just don't leave the place where they have so much history. In Baptist churches your relationship is not with the Pastor but with the boards (usher board, mother's board, deacon board, trustee board & etc.). It's a Black thing, if you're not Black, you wouldn't understand.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:15 am |
  15. e morgan

    Thank you for the reporting on Barack Obama's minister.

    Mr. Obama, abandoned by his black African father and raised by a white American mom chose, as an adult, to join an all black church that preaches hatred of white America.

    Many black Americans may have reason to resent the white ones. Mr. Obama has none – except unresolved, adolescent mad-at-Mommy issues.

    What kind of man is this?
    First, ungrateful and disrespectful of his mother and America who gave him Harvard and all his other opportunities.
    Second, dishonest...his claim to not know he belonged to such a white-hating is preposterous. His profuse sweating during Anderson Cooper's questioning showed his discomfort at being caught out.
    Third, troubled and immature: he needs therapy to grow up.

    America is not doing well. We need an adult running our country.
    Mr. Obama is not yet a man.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:14 am |
  16. catherine

    Obama should have left the church 20 years ago if he did not agree with his Pastors views. It is alittle late now to distance himself from him to bring little children into such a hate filled place is outragous shows very bad judgement.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:14 am |
  17. D

    "He who is without sin among you, let him cast the first stone." John 8:7

    ....now can we get back to the things that matter?

    March 15, 2008 at 12:13 am |
  18. Faye (Crossett, AR)

    Social and political statements are made in Black and White churches across America. To say otherwise, is to lie. I have attended the same church all my life, and there are social and political concepts that I do not necessarily agree with, but that is not why I attend. The spiritual gain and fellowship far out weighs any rhetoric that makes no sense to me. So I simply sift through what is valuable and leave the rest as I am sure Senator Obama and his wife have done. I can't imagine two highly intelligent well educated people allowing their children's minds to be conflicted with the rantings of this man. However, I have never heard any pastor in all the churches I have attended use the words "GD America". Nor do I believe that God punishes a nation for the sins it visits on its citizens. Rev. Wright should be condemed for those frightening statements. To say that Hillary has not lived the same experiences as Barack, is not a dig at her, it is simply stating the obvious. I don't know if we will ever truly be a united America, and how sad that is for all of us.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:13 am |
  19. Dee

    I do not understand why people can be so supportive of Obama, this latest controversy is just proof that we really do not know him. The media has created this dream canidate and everyone join the bandwagon because we so desperately want a change from the usual. But we really need to stop and research this man. Our president can be black, female, male , white or brown, these variables do not matter, but our president must be an American first and represent all people, not have a secret agenda for the religious right, for black America, for white America, for liberals. etc. I was for Hilliary to start, but realizine I may have to vote for Obama, now I realize it I will vote for Hilliary or no one.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:13 am |
  20. David

    Obama Distances Himself from Longtime Pastor

    One has to wonder if Obama’s true values and ideals are a reflection from Wright’s Mentorship. He participated in the congregation for over 20 years- I wonder if this is why his wife made the statement that “she was never proud to be an American until now”. Food for thought!


    March 15, 2008 at 12:12 am |
  21. bud

    it is amazing that the only politician that ever spoke up for change from the self serving gov. leaders that are slow but surely destroying this country and leading to our downfall just like rome. we will try to find anything to discredit and get ride of this man. he has white grandparents , a white mother ,is well educated and does not lower himself to clinton or mccain and their will to win no matter what the cost or harm to anyone. why not question hillary about the earlier corruption in her finc. dealing. why not question bill about ruining jones. If an old pastor and 1 real estate deal is the best you can do ,how about making the clinton's explain their millions acquired by feeding at the public well . never knew you could make that much serving your country at least not legally. the man is a bi-racial person and you can bet his pastor has not been preaching like that every sunday or you would have heard about it years ago. I'm white ,old ,republican and really had hoped we had got past judging someone by their color, hey black is just darker brown like white is lighter. you had better hope someone changes the way we are going.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:12 am |
  22. pg

    This is a conversation long past due and I hope we all learn something from it. Rev Wright is historically correct for the most part. There were a few words that made the hair stand on my neck but he said them. Black america has always understand white america, otherwise we would not have survived. On the other hand, white america has never really taken the time to understand any other ethic group because the successful ones have all had to adopt in order to survive and so what you see is a facade for public consumption.
    I wish Obama does succeed in this effort because this is really what this country needs in order for us to come together, discuss our differences, put them aside and work together to solve our problems. Its going to take all of us.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:12 am |
  23. Freda Collins

    Anybody that would sit and listen to and associate with someone that hates white people and America, I have to question his reason for wanting to be President of the United States. I think the people of the U.S. better step back and take another look at Mr. Obama, not to mention Mrs. Obama and the first time she was ever proud of America. Rev. Wright reminds me of Hitler. In view of this latest news I think Mr. Obama should step down, he's done.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:12 am |
  24. Myrtle

    When is someone going to ask Michelle and Barack to get a divorce because they were married by a sometimes loose cannon minister?
    We need to get back to the business of trying to get this country up and running and forget about all this stupid, idiotic crap about what Barack Obama's minister said. I can only speak for myself by saying that I attend church but I have enough sense to seperate the spiritual from the hysterical. I'm sure I'm not the only person in the world who can make that distinction. I hope the people of this country have learned to make that distinction also. If not, oh well, back to the same old political bulls- and maybe in the next cycle of life on earth, someone will wake up and pay attention to things that matter!

    March 15, 2008 at 12:11 am |
  25. cemore love

    isnt what the pastor said true?Isnt this country run by rich white men?is it racist that every president weve ever had was a white male? oh,my bad ,you dont see anything wrong with that do you.YOUR great great grandparents werent racist,were they? none of your distant relatives were apart of the hangings,your mom or dad wouldnt freak out if you had a BLACK boyfriend or girlfriend,right?....you guys kill me.YOU are guilty of hatred.slavery.lies.I know YOU are afraid..BUT dont be..we believe in god. we would never treat you the way you or (your ancestors) have treated the darker races.we love you.OK..but YOUVE kinda been foul for a few hundred years,and weve grown tired of your crap.so,its time to take a time out.OK.LET LOVE TAKE OVER..not GREED.(((love)))

    March 15, 2008 at 12:11 am |
  26. pwilson

    Clinton repudiated Ferraro and Bill and that Latino official's racial comments; McCain repudiated that DJ's and Pastor Pasley's hateful rhetoric; now Obama denounced his former Pastor's comments. If you judge Obama, fine, but don't be any harsher with him than you are with the rest of the crew. If you withdraw your vote from him because of someone else's statements then you should withdraw your vote from the rest of the candidates. Also, remember Obama's mother is white. He speaks lovingly of her and his grandmother and grandfather. That Pastor might be an old fool, but that doesn't make Obama a racist by association , just like it doesn't make Clinton or McCain racist. We have to separate the hype from the real issues facing this country.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:11 am |
  27. Matt Cude

    Obama has some questions to answer but readers should put all this in context.

    In 1994, for over 100 days, Hillary and Bill had an obligation to help the victims of the Rwanda Genocide. Hundreds of thousands of black women were raped and the Clintons did nothing.

    56,000 blacks were butchered to death each week and week after week, the Clintons denied it was happening – despite news coverage that included video footage of the Kagera river clogged with the bloated, hacked body parts of women and children.

    So, is Obama's pastor's rhetoric alarming? Yes! But it's just rhetoric. It may give us some clue about Barack's character or it may not.

    Abandoning Rwanda is not just some rhetoric in Hillary's background – it's history. The Rwanda genocide was the worst in African history and one of the worst in human history. It was a huge human rights disaster and the Clintons dropped the ball.

    No amount of African charity work or singing in black churches erases the fact that the Clintons abandoned 800,000 innocent victims.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:11 am |
  28. lexie

    Stop making Obama guilty by association. He's damnned if he does and damned if he doesn't. This man has a loving heart for all people, he doesn't show any hostility when Clinton and the media bashes him. This is the same man that won 2 more states for the presidential election race of the United States of America but got shoved to the back of the bus when the governor of NY got busted for laying up with a prostitute and paying thousands of dollars. When Obama has a good story it's heard of very low in the media but the whore got all the media coverage. Tell me, what's wrong with this picture. Somebody, anybody answer me!!!! Please.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:10 am |








    March 15, 2008 at 12:09 am |
  30. ANGELA

    This is RETALIATION for Geraldines racist remarks... exept, these remarks are not racist, they are the truth.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:09 am |
  31. UPenn Student

    This election should not dwell on this issue! If we begin to judge people on who they know and yield to “guilt by association” then EVERYONE, EVERY politician should be jailed! We the people have friends; possibly even close friends that may in some circles be considered racist. Can anyone on this blog or on CNN for that matter honestly say they have not taken advice, or gotten opinions from an individual they found later to be either racist or sexist in some fashion?
    Honestly… I know I have, think teachers, senators, clearly preachers; none of them are perfect. Also one would hope that the general public is not gullible enough to think that somewhere another person of another race is not having their reverse racially charged argument and WORSE! The beliefs of someone’s pastor often differs from that one persons beliefs.
    If Senator Obama speaks about change, let him explained how he wishes to achieve that, for this he should be judged. If he speaks on unity, let him be questioned on his plans to attain it. And if there are other Senators or even PRESIDENTS, who themselves have made blatantly racist statements, let those individuals be judged on their own primitive rhetoric. Are we a nation in which the rants of a angry old man can sway the populous about another individual who has clearly stated the opposite way of thinking multiple times?
    I will not condemn John McCain as an idiotic or rather inept due to George Bush's endorsement. I would not condemn Hillary Clinton due to her husbands actions, so neither must Obama be judged ( in my opinion) by the rants from the primitive mind and short sidedness of one old man.
    Baptist, Woman of Color, PA

    March 15, 2008 at 12:09 am |
  32. Wendell McBurrows

    I understand Barack's position, however, much of what Pastor Wright said is substaniated by white scholars... Aids as a biological weapon, Robert Striker's The Striker Memorandum, Drugs imported by U.S. government, Iran Contra Cocaine Connection, U.S. a state sponsor of terrorism, Support of Saddam Hussein against Iran and support of the Mahagadeen against Russia in Afganistan, 9/11, Former BYU professor Stephen E. Jones theory...the list goes on and on and all that he said is supported by White scholars. If you want to address those issues your reporting should be addressed at the heart of those issues rather than at Sen. Obama and his pastor.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:07 am |
  33. TRH

    I wonder how many comments here are from the Clinton and McCain campaigns. So many over the top and exaggerated comments and rabid attacks it's not even funny. Judge Obama by what he says and does, not the people he knows. If people start passing guilt by association they need to look at themselves first and really examine whether or not they've ever known someone they disagree with but not cut all ties to. Family, friend or coworker, it doesn't really matter. Have none of you ever disagreed with a person about politics or religion or other topics involving values, but kept talking (associating) with them about other topics? That was a rhetoric question btw, because of course you have.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:07 am |
  34. Charlotte M. Johnson

    Have things changed when it comes to the American of African descent and whites? When I look at the discussion concerning Obama and his former pastor's statements during a sermon, I can honesty say, I don't think so. I 'am speaking from experience, I grew up in the 1950's. Barack Obama's former pastor made statements that seemed to have inflame the people. When John Haggie endorsed John McCain there were comments made that Haggie called the Catholic church a "whore." Little was said in passing about the endorsement and McCain accepting Haggie's endorsement. but that is as far as it went. Some may argue that John Haggie is not McCain's pastor, that is true, but McCain has embraced Haggie by his acceptance of his endorsement.and what Haggie has said is a negative toward the Catholics. (Is there a difference?)

    Why have I said things have not changed? Noone has given John Haggie the press time that Rev. Wright was given. McCain was not called on the carpet for accepting the endorsement as Obama has been given concerning the statements his former pastor made. McCain was not put on the hot seat. You go a step further and ask basically, if Obama was telling the truth that he had not heard the statements in question. I can say, I believe him. I have been a member of my demonination for a lifetime (over 60 years) . When I moved from my home state, nearly 30 years ago, I joined the church I currently attend. Over all the years I have been in church, when I miss the service, noone calls me to tell me what the message was about. Nor do they tell me when I see them in person. I can't believe that people are questioning Obama's honesty, when nothing has come out of his mouth the relates to the statements that Rev. Wright has made. This is no more than a witch hunt. My father always told us "if you look for something, you will find it." Someone was looking for something to try and bring Obama down.

    For people to think that Barack Obama would be influenced by the kind of statements the Rev. Wright made is not giving Obama credit for being able to think for himself. I don't think any of us see that when he is on the campaign trail.

    I have read both of Obama's books, "Dreams from my Father and The Audicity of Hope," no where in either of his books do I see a man who is a follower or is easily influenced. For him to accept the statements that were made by Rev. Wright is saying that he can not think for himself. For those people who believe that he is unable to lead this nation where it needs to go, if you haven't read his books, do so. And if need be, listen to his speaches. Then ask yourself, is he a man of his word or is he influenced by someone else's words? Not only has Obama spoken about the type of campaign he wanted to lead, he has shown by his actions the type of campaign he is leading.

    America, we are better than this. Don't let the noise rob you of your future and your children' and grandchildren's future. If you believed the day that you casted your vote for Obama and if you haven't voted yet but believe that Obama is the man that you believe can unite the nation and the world, don't let anything or anyone change your mind. I believe and will always believe that Barack Obama will take this nation into a direction that will be for the betterment of the nation and the world.

    People around the world are watching to see if we allow ourselves to be distracted by things that are not significant in bringing the people together and solving the nations problems. I believe in America and it people. Don't let us down.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:07 am |
  35. Mike

    Lets all sit and reason:

    Unless I see Obama clapping his hands and stomping his feet while this sermon is being conducted I am not going to hold him accountable for the preachers remark. He has come up on Anderson and looked straight in our eyes and rejected as well as denounced those remarks and also took the extra step of replacing his pastor. If we are to judge people by the pastors of their church not their own character, FINE. Let us see if McCain is rejecting the two preachers who are anti-catholics and anti-homosexuals.

    Dallas, Texas

    March 15, 2008 at 12:07 am |
  36. Terri

    Reverend Wright is a man of God. The truth is that he is telling the truth, and America does not want to deal with it's ugly racist past. Deal with it America, we have been living with it for hundreds of years.
    Kudos to Rev. Wright.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:07 am |
  37. ANGELA

    This minister was not speaking hate, he was speaking the truth, and sometimes the truth hurts. Ironically, it's seems that whites are taking it as a strike against them, when in reality, blacks are the ones who feel the pain of this kind of treatment. Hillary has made constant demeaning statements, and had created a campaine of hate based on Obamas race. She has turned this campaine into a race debate. She is truely desperate and it is really sad that she would build a great relationship with the black community for years, but then turn around and destroy it in months... just because she feels she is ENTITLED to be president over a black man. Very, very sad.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:07 am |
  38. Jeff

    No hand over his heart during the Pledge of Allegiance and stopped wearing the american flag pin, he has been influence by his preacher.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:07 am |
  39. Yolanda Finley

    ...I find it amazing that while it is no secret that racism still exists in American society that anytime someone black or white breaches the subject, everyone becomes uncomfortable. Whoever makes the statement is always labeled a racist. I am an African American who attends a Baptist church where the membership is predominantly Black. Every Saturday and Sunday, places of worship all across our country are separated by race, does that mean they're racist? We really don't have a choice in the matter..the realities of racism are a part of the black experience in America. Reverend Jerimiah Wright though his words may sting, is well respected and I would love to see more clergy support him. However, most don't want to delve into politics or offend anyone. While the sermons from the pulpit vary from week to week, many pastors provide encouragement to broken spirits in their congregations to overcome racism and any situation in our lives by becoming more like Christ, showing love and compassion, turning away from sin, helping your fellow man. Traditionally, you will find a member of the clergy speaking with inensity as a coach would speak to his team, saying that you are not defeated. To me, that's Rev. Jerimiah Wright's message. My father who is 83 years old and is a black man is not convinced that this country would ever elect a "Black" man as president. I come from a generation that believes that it is impossible. Are we stuck on race or do we want to deal with the many issues that confront individuals and families all across our great country...jobs, quality and affordable education, health, paying taxes, mortgages, buying gas, fueling our homes, the war, foreign affairs, global warming, cures for cancer .... and the list goes on...

    March 15, 2008 at 12:06 am |
  40. Nicole

    I find it interesting that the media is spending so much of it's focus on what Mr. Obama's pastor/mentor says and feels rather than focus on more important national and global events. Likewise, Mr. Obama's presidency shouldn't be based merely on his associates, but rather on what "he" could do for the United States of America. News flash: a tornado just tore through Atlanta and left behind a trial of destruction.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:06 am |
  41. JonS

    America is burning while its citizens are engaging in non-issues.
    RACE GENDER AND RELIGION are not the problem, the dollar has fallen sharply against major currencies, and the price of gold has risen sharply.
    Meanwhile the price of oil is rising daily-soon you will stop reading about Zimbabwe but experience it.
    Stop wasting time on non-issues alot of you are already fronting Mcain but he has admitted that he has problems with grasping economic policy; an issue that needs to be addresed instead you're busy pulling down a candidate who can do better.
    I think you should have used prime time to ask what changes Obama will make to rescue the economy out of recession

    March 15, 2008 at 12:06 am |
  42. Dean Austin

    Why are they attacking Obama with two diametrically opposing issues! Is he a Muslim? Which would mean that he doesn't really listen to that pastor in his heart. Or is he a Christian, ending any thought that he is a Muslim. Pick one, will you! It just makes his opponents sound desperate and defeated. By the way, I my self have not decided on either one of the three yet, because what matters to me most are the issues. Not that one is a Woman, a Black, or a Bush endorsee.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:06 am |
  43. Jan J

    Go Anderson, finally some tough questions regarding his core beliefs and values. So many of his supporters seem to be easily pacified by his easy answers..almost reminds me of the teflon phenomena.
    What about the other speakers who have spoken hate
    in that same church?. ...and curiously Obama is half white...he never stands up for that 1/2 of himself or his family.
    MLK is the role model and spiritual mentor I prefer for the leader of
    our country.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:06 am |
  44. Dee

    Question: Was he aware of the pastors beliefs? Answer – YES

    March 15, 2008 at 12:06 am |
  45. Nora Spencer

    Who's chickends are comin home to roost now???
    That's the answer he's going to give...I sat there for 20 years clueless? A Harvard grad, the husband of a Harvard grad, a sitting United States Senator does not see the man or what his hate filled perverted mind said as problematic? That's the horse he's backin?

    THe Clintons have been the butt of many jokes, but this one is so far over the line. Can you imagine how Chealsey feels? No one with any sense of compassion would ever do anything as cruel and intentionally hurtful. They are her parents!!!

    You can't get more cruel than that!

    Don't muddy the waters with Hagee, Ferraror, Bush, Reagan, Bob Jones, Parsley!!!
    It's insulting

    March 15, 2008 at 12:06 am |
  46. Ms.Martin

    I think before the dicussion of whether or not Senator Obama should reject Rev. Wright, there should have been a discussion as to whether or not what Rev. Wright is saying his really racist and hate filled.

    It it unfair, but typical of MSM and many who wish to pounce, to make a huge issue of something without giving it an all around look.

    I am African American and aside from the statements made regarding the Palestinians, I know the things Mr. Wright has sad to be true. Take a look at the statistics regarding minorities in America, it is true. Black/Brown pain is very real!

    I wouldn't say God damn America, as I pray for his blessing for America and every other country. That said, I can see how someone in pain could cry out for God's help. We don't know Mr. Wright's pain and the pain he feels for many people.

    The point of Rev. Wright is evidence in the fact that a small piece of his work is called racist against whites and then used to beat a black man over the head with.

    It was not wrong for Mr. Obama to belong to Mr. Wright's church because Rev. Wright had no problem with telling some truths about America.

    The shameful thing is that he has to dissassociate from him based on a white outcry of hate and racism. Please give me a break. After all the African American community has endured, surely you can take a few words from a tired old man.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:05 am |
  47. Terri H White

    I am an African American Women in the state of Ga....I am 46 years old. I am angry as hell right now.......I feel that of all the things we have to talk about, Rev Wright is not the biggest issue facing our County. What Rev Wright has said is an age old story that just won't go away.lt will never go away until we decide that it has to die! Racism has always been in America, and we know it still exists today. White America can not believe a Black Man has the strength and ambition and the intelligence to and the audacity to run for President of the United States and win....It's ok for white preachers to preach a dividing message and call it good religion.....Rev Wright did not lie....Obama is a black man raised by a black single mom who can relate to poor struggling americans....Unfortunately, white america runs the media!!!

    March 15, 2008 at 12:05 am |
  48. jake

    obama is done.....march 15 is the Ides of March. March 15 is the Ides of Obama or the death of a presidential bid. Put a fork in him. He is done. He is guilty either by association or lack of judgement of having an association. If a member white preacher said hateful comments about jews, gays, blacks, or women, anyone associated with that person would have a political hot potato on their hands. And, that is what Obama has now and he is burnt and done. Ciao.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:05 am |
  49. michael

    Stop all the comparisons with Mc Cain and Haggey. Haggey is not McCains Pator of 20 years. There is a huge difference.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:04 am |
  50. Rhonda Cotner

    Ministers are judged on a number of qualities. Rev. Wright was intemperate in his language in these instances. BUT in the UCC authoritarianism is not the norm. We do not mindlessly endorse everything our ministers say or how they say it. How has Rev. Wright lived his life? How does he endorse the teachings of Jesus? Picking and choosing a few sermons from 20 years worth could put any pastor in a bad light.
    This is much ado about nothing.
    Have we ever heard hateful words from Sen. Obama?
    The press and GOP propagandists being hysterical again.

    March 15, 2008 at 12:04 am |
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