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. Elisha

    It is truly ironic for conservatives to talk about guilt by association when the Republican party continues to be the party of Strom Thurmond and Allen Quip. Everyone knew Thurmond ran on a segregationist platform, and he was well-respected and helped campaign for Ronald Reagan.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:21 am |
  2. varbardo

    Well Obama and McCain are out because of there pastors and Clinton is out because of here staff makes racial remarks.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:20 am |
  3. Sarah

    Senator Obama is not nearly as oppressed as a majority of the country. He has traveled the world and attended the finest universities in this country and collects a very comfortable salary. I really liked him , but I would like to point out that Tim Russert addressed Senator Obama as far as the anti Jewish tone of Reverend Wright during one of the democratic debates recently. Senator Obama is fully aware of the tone of Reverend Wright and Senator Obama is also a part of the wealthy elite community running this country. Being not white does not make a person poor,uneducated or stupid if the American public believes that it does then they are being fooled again.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:20 am |
  4. bla bla

    Obama is not some poor unsophisticated smuck. He is a civil rights
    attorney, and author of political books. These topics at issue are
    the passion of his professional life. When he puts his children in that
    church on Sunday he knows exactly what the message is, and he
    approves of it.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:19 am |
  5. Ray Leonard

    I just read some of America's early history in a book written by Howard Zinn and his biography of Andrew Jackson made me utterly sick. It made me wonder, what the hell is he doing on the $20 bill? And we call him a American heroe. I am sickened by the fact that in all my history classes as a child growing up they never mentioned the things that people like Andrew Jackson had done to minorities, in the name of establishing a God fearing country, called America. And yes, a country that was and now is completely controled by rich white men. You know this is no secret Anderson, right? I was surpised to see the looks you were making while Barack's pastor said what he said about the rich white men. What's my point? Well my point is, is that Barack's pastor has a justified reason to feel the way he does, because of our wonderful history and attitudes towards minoritiesn this so called christian country.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:19 am |
  6. Joyce

    It is amazing to me how many times this man has had to explain he is not muslim, he is christian and then to be asked to sing. How sick is that. I sat in a church for 20 years and didn't agree with the pastor or the church, but my friends and family were there. What the pastor said is true. We did bomb countries, kill women and children. As long as we go around the world killing people in the name of democracy, we are going to be hated.

    Just imagine some dropping a bomb in your city killing half you family then coming to you and saying well, we got the terroist that stopped your country from becoming a democracy. Would you worship the people that did that or would you want revenge. Other nationalities have feelings too. People put yourself in others shoes, in those shoes maybe we don't look as nice.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:19 am |
  7. kim brown

    I just have one question. Where do the statements of Rev. Wright leave that church with the gov't? Maybe I am mistaken, but I thought churches or non-profits could lose their tax exemption for backing a political party or candidate. So, what shall happen to this church who not only trashed a senator, but our country ... and completely backs a particular presidential candidate, member or not?

    March 15, 2008 at 2:19 am |
  8. Anna

    We are not beyond issues of gender and race. As a black person, I know I'm not welcome in many areas of this country. As a black person, I know that the discrimination that I've experienced will continue. And anybody who says that race is not an issue is lying. Why didn't anyone discuss the "whiteness" of Mitt Romney, his staff, his campaign? Why does no one question the outlandish comments made about Obama by the Fox people, or Rush Limbaugh? In fact, when they make these comments, CNN jumps on the bandwagon, demanding the democrats clarify or defend. You play the same tape over and over, inflaming your audiences.
    Rev. Wright is just one person. Then you, Anderson, keep asking: "Do you buy"...In other words, Barack must be lying.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:18 am |
  9. Rod

    Well let's be fair with Obama as he has continuously brought up the point that he had the Judgment that was needed in being against the war....by the way he didn't have to vote only make comments. Now if want to talk about Judgment, where was his judgment to go to this same church for over 20 years. A person like his pastor doesn't wake up one day and make terrible comments as he did against the United States and Hillary. The hate with in him had to have been spewed many time over the years but overlooked.....bad Judgment on Obama's part. Then let's see if this rubs off on their way of thinking. Wasn't it Michele Obama who said this is the first time in her life she was proud to be an American. Sounds like it rubbed off on her. Who knows what has rubbed of on him.....I don't wish to find out when we can least afford it.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:18 am |
  10. lona

    Are you kidding me? If this man was a member of a church for twenty years and didn't have a clue what his pastor was talking about or stood for can you imagine how effective or attentive he would be on a world stage? The American people are not as stupid and far from as evil as Obama and his Pastor believe. Please do not insult the intelligence of the American people. We are a decent wonderful people who care about and love others. Some may believe as they wish, but wishes don't make it so. Preaching hatred and past mistakes are counterproductive to furthering the good of mankind or the United States.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:16 am |
  11. Orlando

    It is my experience as a devoted church going christian in a certain church at least "10yrs" to have heard the same message "or at least the same points of a message" being made more than once and even two or three times in that same church. To say that you were not in a certain service to hear a certain message does not exclude the theory that at some point of time being in a church for "20 yrs" you had to have heard this message or the same points being made in this message at a service in the same church.

    Love endures long and is patient and kind; Love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily.
    It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly ) and does not act unbecomingly. Love (God's love in us) does not insist on it's own rights or it's own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong ].
    it does not rejoice at injustice and unrightiousness,but rejoices when right and truth prevail.
    Love bear's up under anything and everything that come's, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, it's hopes are fadeless under all circumstances and it endures everything [without weakening].
    "Love never fails" [never fades out or becomes obselete or comes to an end].

    1 corinthians 13: 4 thru 8 amplified version

    this should be the point of a message in any sermon. that is if God is in the sermon.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:16 am |
  12. neshia

    I am so tried of the media driving this whole notion of race being the main focus point. We do have issues that I know these candidates are talking about and it probably only get 4 minutes of media coverage. But I guess the media have to keep the drama rolling. Sen. Obama is BI-RACIAL so I don't understand why you only refer to him as an Africian American. I don't hold him accountable for his pastor's views. I don't think Sen. Obama hate white people or any ethnic group, for that matter. He has a white American mother and family whom raised him. Come on CNN please find a dramatizing way to report on issues.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:16 am |
  13. Bill Green

    I think we have heard this before in the Democratic Party, "I did not have sexual relations with that woman." Obama thinks we really believe that he went to that church for twenty years and did not know Wright was a racist. Should we elect someone for president that is naive?

    March 15, 2008 at 2:15 am |
  14. Loretta

    So sad to see that Obama can sit there and say that he has belonged to this church for 20+ years and this is the "first" he has heard of this? We are NOT stupid sir....we are intelligent people. Give us credit that if I had sat in a church (which I did) for 20+ years and even once my minister said something like that I would have called him on the carpet and never walked in that door again! We are all Americans. How can you expect people to vote for you to be OUR president to represent OUR country when you have all this stuff surfacing now on you? What else is out there? Shame on you, Shame on Hillary for whining, McCain you need some guts. We need a Leader that is going to stand Up for Us as American's or we as the US of A are going to fall flat on our face and we will lose our freedom to worship freely when we do. Wake Up America before it is too Late!

    March 15, 2008 at 2:15 am |
  15. susie

    you can not expect people to believe that obama has not heard these comments before. i think it actually makes him look like a weaker person to dennounce his pastor now after these comments. this person was suppose to be his spiritual leader for years, performed his marriage, baptized his children and now out of the blue has turned in to some kind of nut case that obama had no ideal that he had these feelings. bull!!!! wake up!!!!

    March 15, 2008 at 2:14 am |
  16. M. Madison

    Obama is not responsible for what his minister says. He doesn't have to run away like a coward. He seems to have done fine for the years he has been in the church. I'm sure he took what he could use from the sermons.
    I do not know of any black person who hates America. I believe that America is not all that it could be, but thank God it is not what it was.
    I'm proud to be an American! I will continue, just as Obama, to make America strong and face the issues that confront this generation.
    Aren't you glad that Bush is not your minister!

    March 15, 2008 at 2:14 am |
  17. Kwesi Wilson

    I watched your show felt compelled to throw in my two cents. Regarding paster Wright comments, I have to agree with Roland and David (two of your regular guests) white American and black Americans hold different perspective of America. Like Chris Rock said in his HBO special (Ain't Never Scared) "white America is like the uncle that paid your way through college but raped you."

    There is white privilege, and black churches, historically, have always sought to uplift their communities through self-help. This is manifested in the role of black churches during the civil rights movement.

    Blacks are seeking to have the race discourse, whites think they are not responsible for slavery; hence black hold pent-up anger towards the country they love dearly, and until that happens we will see racism's ugly head pop-up from time to time.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:13 am |
  18. Mike

    I don't buy that somebody goes to a Church for 20 years and hasn't an inkling that your minister says or thinks this kind of stuff. He just says this kind of stuff when Obama isn't around? I don't think so. I also don't buy that somebody can transcend race when you listen to your minister spew racial hatred on Sundays. Looks to me like the same bully pulpit that Wright used to try and help get Obama elected is going to be the same one that takes him down. If it doesn't, it should.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:12 am |
  19. Rene

    OMG! Anderson, you are handling this well. You of all people know what White people have done to America to make it a disgrace to the entire world. I say White people only because it is the truth, as they are the one's who have historically been what America is seen as.

    I teach school. I don't do the pledge, but I respect those who do. The pledge says (in fact) one nation (ok) indivisible (wrong) with liberty (wrong as it regards all of it's citizens) and justice (we know this is leading to a hugh lie as it pertains to African Americans) FOR ALL.

    Obama and every other African Amercian, and most intelligent White, Brown, Yellow, and Red people know that everything that Wright has said is true. That doesn't mean that the above said people don't like this country. Just that sometimes this country has not like them.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:12 am |
  20. E.J. Mims

    If I was Barack Obama i would ask all of the news media people to write down, explicitly, what they want him to say (script what makes you comfortable); and, then ask them why McCain, or Clinton is not under this kind of scrutiny. How many people does Barack Obama have to be responsible for what they say?

    I don't care what his ex-pastor has said. Barack didn't say them. But to tell Barack Obama to quit his church is the most hypocritical thing that I have ever heard; and I am 57 years old. I have had a pastor that I disagreed with most of what he said, but I didn't leave the church; because, the church is more than one man....it is a congregation/community of people who work to improve the communtiy as a whole.

    If the man said that he didn't hear the 30 seconds of infamy that Fox and, to my surprise, CNN are blowing so out of proportion. I have to ask myself why this has so much importance and is all over the news.

    I think that Barack Obama has upset the status quo in this country. He has the potential to take this country to a place that it has never been...and that is true democracy. He is about to make America greater than it has ever been. You see, "Big Money" in this country has historically pitted poor-white, poor-black, Poor-hispanic, white men, black men, white women, black women, and all of the other groups in this country.......against each other. This divisiveness has crippled the true America; but, Barack Obama is bringing all of these groups together as American.....and in the eyes of those who would keep america divided....he is getting to close to a position that can change the way Americans see themselves. So, somebody(s), somewhere has decided that Barack Obama has to go.....before he wins the nomination, and the Presidency.

    Don't be fooled anymore my fellow Americans of all colors.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:12 am |
  21. jr

    If Obama's words and aspirations are inspired by Rev Wright then if he becomes the president ....are we some how following the teachings of Rev Wright......How many people really belive after 20 years he HAD NO idea what this guy was about....The Jigs up Obama...RIP

    March 15, 2008 at 2:11 am |
  22. tish

    With all respect to Obama, let's not forget, Obama's mother was White. So how could he be racist or how could his views reflect those of Rev. Wright's??????

    March 15, 2008 at 2:11 am |
  23. Scott

    How would you like to be a member of our armed services with this un-American (Obama) as your Commander in Chief?

    March 15, 2008 at 2:11 am |
  24. brenda

    mr obama does not have any control over what his pastor says. he say that he never heard the sermon, and maybe he didn't. is it so hard to believe that he might be telling the truth. but this is another example of if you're black you are a liar. among other things. it is time to stop the maddness, and give it a rest.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:09 am |
  25. Mack

    Senator Obama is of fine character or I'm sure the Kennedy family wouldn't have endorced him. John McCain has some questionable friends who have been in trouble and in prison. The media hasn't gotten in to that–interesting. Hillary is holding back a lot of answers we need. I wonder why! Barack was trying for a positive election. The media and someone made sure that didn't happen. An old paster with issues from an unfair time hasn't and will not change my mind about this bright articulate, intellegent young man who would make a fine commander and chief. By the way I'm a retired Lt.Col A.F.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:05 am |
  26. Cheryl

    It's pretty amazing to see how hypocritical Barack Obama has been. Obama has been running as the change candidate, the candidate of hope, a uniter. The candidate that transcends race. I think his cover has been blown. You don't belong to a Church for 20-years and you aren't personal friends with somebody for 20-years if you don't share their beliefs. If you're not racist, you don't go to a Church and listen to these types of sermons. It's divisive rhetoric at its worst. And ironically, the word "divisive" is one Obama is fond of throwing around when he doesn't like what somebody else says. Shame on Obama for crying wolf with Geraldine Ferraro and others when he sat in Church listening to his minister spew racial hatred and curse America. When does one allow their Church to serve as an election rally? Obama has denounced his minister. What about an apology to Clinton? What about the families in the military? The families of 9/11 victims? This type of stuff goes to the core of a persons character and their personal beliefs. YES the media should cover it. YES the media should investigate the whole issue entirely. The American voters have a right to know what types of beliefs a future president has.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:05 am |
  27. Marcus


    James Dobson stated a few months before 9/11 that he and his wife, Shirley were praying for God's judgment upon America. I heard him say this on his radio program. I was regular listener on KHCB 105.7 FM in Texas. The name of his program is Focus on the Family. Check it out.

    I just think that Anglo Americans see the past, present, and envision the future from their perspective. The anglo perspective for the most part does not include slavery, reconstruction, Jim Crow, segregation, or post-segregation vestiges of racism. Blacks have nearly lived a dual existence in America to survive– suffering degredation and yet striving toward the humanity and dignity that was never lost. Indeed Black Americans have walked in the audacity of faith, hope, and love. The greatest of these is love– and God is Love.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:03 am |
  28. Frieda

    It's the "judgment" stupid!!!!

    Obama keeps boasting about his "judgment" ability...what happened to his judgment when he CHOSE his pastor, have him in his wedding, had his kids baptized and attended that church for the last 20 years.

    You want me to believe that this is the first time he heard his pastor anti-American, anti-white hatred???

    I don't think so, he is just another typical politician.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:03 am |
  29. Kay B

    Regarding Barak Obama,

    Today's events with Mr. Obama's church has solidified my gut feeling about him. If something seems to be too good to be true it usually is. If it walks like a duck, acts like a duck, and quaks like a duck...it is rather likely a duck. If Mr. Obama wanted to unite us as one people, he wouldn't identify himself as the press also does, as African American but as Mulatto, He identifies with a father's race who abandoned him at two, rather than with his caucasian mother and grandparents that afforded him the finest schools. If he chose his father's race it would only make sense he would also choose his religon. The fact that his wife, is proud to be an American for the first time in her adult life, his afiliation of 22 yrs with Rev Wright is the last straw. Does he really believe anyone even the college children he's attempted to prey upon will believe after 22 years he wouldn't know the belliefs of his own minister and admitted confidant? Of coarse he would deny being muslim, and repute Rev Wrights words, It would be political suicide not to do so. Why even ask such a question? Our countries future is too precious to put in the hands of a black man wanna be, or some one who there is an inkling of a chance he has islamic or muslim affiliations. I wouldn't want him anywhere on the democratic ticket...I wouldn't vote for him as garbage collector.. or Mr. McCain. It will be interesting to see if the Press lets this go and continue to torture Hillary or how Ophra will rescue him from this. I've never seen nor heard anything more racist than he is. What Mr. Obama has done is set Civil Rights back 50 years. It's painfully clear he is lying.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:03 am |
  30. Christine Percherke

    I have never been so disappointed in a political candidate. I'm a democrate from Pennsylvania and white and I planned on voting for Mr. Obama. Thank goodness this came out before the primary. I almost followed the Pied Piper.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:02 am |
  31. bob

    If you think obama went to this church for 20 years and now is saying he never heard remarks like this. If we belive him then I guess we deserve to have him as our next president. I would love to hear some of obams conversations when he is just with other blacks and no media around. Just ask how many blacks are voting this time that have never even thought of voting before. I also wonder why oprey just decided to back obama I'm sure it had nothing to do with him being black.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:01 am |
  32. carolyn

    And I do not understand why there is so much greater focus on Obama and his religion. An entire show has not been devoted to McCain & his conservative right religious backers whom McCain courted for endorsement.

    March 15, 2008 at 2:00 am |
  33. michael mcknight

    tell you what.. Iam still looking for a church to go to. and when I check new ones out, I can tell the tone just by visiting one or two sundays.. You mean to tell me that Senator Obama has gone to this church for over twenty years and he did know that these were the thoughts that were being feed to the flock... come on america... wake up... senator Obama is the wolf in sheeps clothing... and if he gets the presidency , you might as well roll out the red carpet to Radical Islam... OPEN YOUR EYES...all the little signs are there ,they have been all along, you just dont want to believe...because he is such a charismatic speaker.. Thats why they call it a silver tongued DEVIL.....
    he wont were a usa flag pin, doesnt put his hand over his heart when sing the american anthem, doesnt say god BLESS america, Now this... Hillary is right....."BARACK is NOT the MAN you think he is."..Remeber Hillary said it first.... Were is the media on this... Geez....

    March 15, 2008 at 2:00 am |
  34. Shannon

    The issues for Presidency have nothing to do with this. I think the press is making the Reverend's point. What else can we "scare" up for the white Americans? Let's make this look like Voodoo. Let's find out things that are foreign to white Americans.

    Go ahead and try. I'm a white American. I happen to agree with Obama on the political issues, and believe in his integrity. I happen to disagree with the media's approach to "covering" the Presidential primaries. Does anyone know how to stick to the point? We simply don't care. Most Obama supporters are just that. As long as he is willing to hang in there with all this media hype, we will be here too.

    March 15, 2008 at 1:59 am |
  35. Ann -Texas

    Your panel stated that African American churches and African Americans preach and have a different view from White Churches and White Americans about our country and White Americans, then why would we want an African American who goes to a church that advocates distain and hatred toward White Americans to be the leader of this nation. It's very apparent that this is a case of discrimination toward Whites. I know that not all African Americans believe this way, because I work with a large number of African Americans, and I've never heard any of them voice this opinion. And they are a great group of "Americans" to work with.

    When is this group of African Americans going to realize that it wasn't any generation alive today that did the horrible things to their ancestors. Have any of them been slaves? No, and no White American who is alive today has held any slaves . There are as many poor White Americans in this country as Black now. Look at the people living in the Appalacians and notice that there are as many White homeless, if not more.

    As of today, Obama has lost my vote. Not only because of what Rev. Wright said, but because I think he was lying about not knowing any of those statements were made, and not knowing what Rev. Wright's strong views are. If they were so close, you can't make me believer he didn't know.

    March 15, 2008 at 1:59 am |
  36. charlie Fink

    Black Church? White Church? What is that all about? Church is Church. Jeez!

    March 15, 2008 at 1:58 am |
  37. Cheryl

    It's pretty amazing to see how hypocritical Barack Obama have been. Obama has been running as the change candidate, the candidate of hope, a uniter. The candidate that transcends race. I think his cover has been blown. You don't belong to a Church for 20-years and you aren't personal friends with somebody for 20-years if you don't share their beliefs. If you're not racist, you don't go to a Church and listen to these types of sermons. It's divisive rhetoric at its worst. And ironically, the word "divisive" is one Obama is fond of throwing around when he doesn't like what somebody else says. Shame on Obama for crying wolf with Geraldine Ferraro when he sat in Church listening to his minister spew racial hatred and curse America. When does one allow their Church to serve as an election rally? Obama has denounced his minister. What about an apology to Clinton? This type of stuff goes to the core of a persons character and their personal beliefs. YES the media should cover it. YES the media should investigate the whole issue entirely. The American voters have a right to know what types of beliefs a future president has.

    March 15, 2008 at 1:58 am |
  38. Elena, California

    Dear Anderson and all who are writing comments:

    Why is everybody making such a big deal of what the preacher (not Barack) said? Would anyone consider who my mother is when hiring me for a job?

    In this case clintons new exactly what they were doing: they are good at provoking. They started on the racial issue and peaked on it this week to provoke a negative response from African-Americans. They succeeded, and now they'll blaim Obama.

    By the way I'm white female.

    Guys' open your eyes and look at the big picture. Obama is the only hope we have. Look into his life – he's clean and fresh soul, clintons couldn't dig much about him, and beleive me, they were and are digging hard.

    Obama didn't hit Hillary at all – if God forbid she gets nominated (and Dems will loose a substantial percentage of supportes and 85% of young generation), then republicans will remind you who you've nominated, and you'll be ashamed. Some well known facts about Billary that disqualify her from being a President:
    1. She can't manage her husband (hundreds of extramarital affairs) – can she manage the country? Actually, of course, the plan is not for her to run the country, but for Bill to get his 3rd term in White House.
    2. There is so much dirt in her life that she refuses to reveal her income taxes and her first lady archives to voters – clintons know that they will be out of any chances once the public knows the truth about the source of their income and about her total lack of experience evident from the archives. But not to worry, if she doesn't show you these docs and will be nominated against the will of voters, Republicans will shed light on all of this.
    3. Barack's campaign accepted money from average americans, 90% of donations to his campaigh are under $100. Clinton's took money from lobbyists – does it tell you whos interests clintons will represent?

    Yes, we need to see our future President's character and abilities. I beleive in Obama's. I'll vote for him in November. For Hillary – NEVER!

    Let's save the world together, please, don't give the power to evil...

    March 15, 2008 at 1:57 am |
  39. Susan Lehr Michigan

    I think it is sad that a man that would help the country as much as he would is being put thru this. He is one of the best I have seen in all my time voting. I even joined the party to be sure to be able to vote for him when it comes up. I am a female and in my sixty. I am not for Clinton no way. Lets get back to what is important. We need business so we can have job.

    March 15, 2008 at 1:55 am |
  40. charlie Fink

    There is separation between God and some men of the world. We need not to experience the world in a state of "dis-pair" but as Barack Obama's vision of hope to"re-pair."

    We can find hope in Barack Obama's message. His message is the hope of ending separation and bring all people of the world together. How can we diasgree with that? What would Jesus say? He had the same message of hope that Barack Obama and his family would has. That is the spiritual message Barack Obama follows. He is a spiritual person. Let us all remember that believing in hope is not a weakness it is a strength.

    I am so sick of separation of races in this campaign. The media has taken advantage of this by distracting people using their "nearsighted microscope."

    The media needs to put away their microscope and shut up and just listen to the candidates messages! Especially the ones that are based on hope and in faith!

    March 15, 2008 at 1:54 am |
  41. carolyn

    As Americans isn't it supposed to be that our religion is a private matter? I would dislike being interrogated about my religion or something that my spiritual advisor said. Obama has said that while he does not agree with some of the negative aspects of Rev Wright's sermons esp on the subject of politics, he received great spiritual guidance from him. This is possible. I have learned life altering lessons from negative statements or happenings. We can learn what not to do by watching someone else do it. We cannot judge another person's manner of spiritual learning. And just as so many of us do not appreciate many of Rev Wright's views, neither does Obama. How can we take responsibility for the ignorance of others? Maybe by doing what Obama has vowed to do – unite by working together for our common good.

    March 15, 2008 at 1:54 am |
  42. Sista in Seattle

    I am always amazed at how upset white folks when they are confronted with the truth. Truth - America has been the cause of a lot of pain in this world; if you believe that people in developing countries hate us because we are free, you are truly delusional. Truth - Hillary Clinton was not a black boy who grew up in America. Truth - Hillary Clinton has never been called a n@@@r. Truth - American governments supported apartheid in South Africa for much of its history. Truth - American governments were instrumental in the overthrow of the democratically leader of Iran (in the 50's) and replaced him with the Shah. Truth - Americans financed and supported Sadam Hussein until he decided to invade Kuwait. Truth - White folks in this country has oppressed every brown person on this continent (black, indigenous and mexicans). And, Truth - Rich white people do run this country.

    Rev Wright preaches in a style that is common in African American churches. The fact that he happens to be a black man that speaks truth to those who happen to be white about the pain they bring to this planet does not make him a racist. He is simply telling the truth. And, sometimes the truth hurts.

    March 15, 2008 at 1:53 am |
  43. tish

    I, as an African American, am very disturbed by this attack on Barack Obama. It appears to me that those who are the predominate race never cease with the constant onslaught of blacks. While I don't agree with the way Rev. Wright articulated his views, as an African American, I have experienced some of things that he mentioned and can relate. I too, in the past, and continually experience discrimination every day of my life. I wish that the people of White America would take responsibility and accountability for what has been and still is being done to African Americans. In my opinion, I think that this is a smokescreen and just another conduit to use to diminish Barack Obama's candidacy for President as a Black man. Why don't some of you, particularly those who dug the videos up, admit that you are just not ready for an African American president. Barack Obama has no control over his pastor views. I take this attack very personal and right now I am in tears because White America continues to perpetuate the same patterns demonstrated in the 60's up until now. I am sick and tired of this nonsense. White America makes it hard to be a Christian because you continually inflict racist and discriminative behavior toward African Americans and when we voice our opinions about it then you want to call us racist.

    p.s. And by the way, I attend a church that is a rainbow under God. That is, an interdenominational church with over 100 nationalities that attend. The love of God bridges the gap between us. In my church we see no color, so no, I am not a RACIST. Additionally, the founding pastor and several of my pastors are white. But you know what, when I step outside the sanctuary, I enter back into the harsh reality of racism.


    March 15, 2008 at 1:53 am |
  44. Kelly

    How many times have you befriended someone and found out that later your views aren't the same?

    Just because his pastor said some inappropriate things during this emotional and important election period, doesn't mean that he has expressed those feelings and actions before.

    I do not feel that, what he said was racist (inappropriate) but not racist. A lot of people feel that the government had something to do with 911 (Mike Moore included), The government did infect the Tuskegee air men and Clinton apologized for that.

    He was just speaking of things everyone has said. Although I do not agree church is the correct platform for this type of talk, it was not racist.

    I don't feel that Obama should be the blame for how someone else feels. I except Obama's apology and feel that we all need to get back to what is really important which is repairing our economy. This is all a diversion to take us off the real.

    There is no way that Obama doesn't love this country and everyone in it. Even with constant death threats, he continues to run for what he truly believes in. He could be risking his life to become the president of the United States. That's Love

    Don't get caught up in the diversion attacks the other candidates are trying to pull, because they know they can't beat him without their dirty tricks.

    March 15, 2008 at 1:53 am |
  45. Greg

    I find it interesting that Mr. Obama states that he never heard these particular sermons, but he does not state that he was not aware of these sermons. It is a very sad state of affairs when a presidential candidate has his spouse say that she is now only proud of the United States after living in the United States for over 40 years, and his minister sounding making such Anti American comments, and giving his own version of the National Anthem. What type of person is Mr.Obama when he states that for 20 years this minister was his spiritual leader. Who is the real Barack Obama.

    March 15, 2008 at 1:52 am |
  46. Clarinet Enduit

    Know what Anderson?
    Rev. Wright may have been under strong medications lately, and lost it. Remember General De Gaulle screaming at the end of his career "lLONG LIFE TO THE FREE QUEBEQ", which provoked a huge scandal? He had that prostate cancer whose treatment made him completely senile just before his retirement.
    Anyway thank you for giving Obama the opportunity to speak about it. It was very interesting.

    March 15, 2008 at 1:48 am |
  47. Barb

    Obama's halo is starting to slip. Why did he and his wife subject their children to Rev. Wright's ranting. Were they both asleep during the sermons? Sen. Obama's damage control didn't ring true did it? Trying to cover his butt is "old politics." he needs more practice.

    March 15, 2008 at 1:48 am |
  48. Nancy

    When Anderson asked Barack if He had an objection to singing the National Anthem, Obama side stepped and said I don't want to sing it right noiw people might not apprecite my singing abilities. That was't a straight answer, why not a yes or no. I would of have just like him to sing it ,not caring if he carried a tune, just to know his true feeling on the question put to him ,by Mr. Cooper, since he skirted the question, the way i understood it..... it makes me wonder if he does have a problem with ?

    March 15, 2008 at 1:48 am |
  49. Dee, Tx

    America really needs to ask itself why is race still such an issue in this country. What did black people do so wrong that generation after generation after generation has to endure substandard treatment simply because of the color of their skin? How can American be any better or expect to be a world leaders when it cannot heal itself. I weep and pray for America.

    March 15, 2008 at 1:47 am |
  50. George

    As a 41yr old black man I am so proud of Barack Obama. It saddens me greatly to see the media and whats her name trying to bring down an icon. We Love You Barack Obama, whether you're elected President or not, because you're an example to us all that we must fight to make this a better world for oursleves, our families and all fellow americans.
    p.s. when washington politics have boiled all the hope out of you, just remember you can always come back home. Peace

    March 15, 2008 at 1:47 am |
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