Obama’s Missed Opportunity

I was thinking about Barack Obama, Jeremiah Wright, and his current situation and how he is playing it and I cannot help but think he squandered his potential to be a transformative leader on the issue of race. It could have happened, and should have, after the first snippets of the Reverend Wright came out…instead Barack gave his bs speach and the media swooned. After Reverend Wright’s Press Club performance Obama had no choice but to put distance between the thoughts and philosophy of Wright and himself. Obama went further though, he put distance between himself and the man that was a mentor and spiritual advisor for 20 years. He ran away from someone who, by all acounts, seemed to be a father figure to him.

What Barack Obama failed to do is to take the opportunity to illuminate black liberation theology and why it was relevant to the struggle Jeremiah Wright was engaged in and why it is not relvant to his current struggle. He had the opportunity to really be the post-racial candidate and he fumbled. I’m not sure if it was fear or just political lust that got the better of him. I do know that had he engaged the public in a genuine discourse on the emancipation of blacks in the United States due in part to those proponents of liberation theology and the subsequent perpetuation of victimology that is the current impediment to progress for blacks it would have been a powerful moment. The solution became the problem. Al Sharpton. Jesse Jackson. Jeremiah Wright.

Imagine if Barack Obama gave a speach that spoke about liberation theology and the context in which it was created. If he talked about it honestly, the rage and the desparation, the struggle for humanity from a critical perspective, we could have moved forward. He fumbled. He could have embraced his friend of twenty years with understanding and explained how the Reverend’s views were part of the past and outlined what we need to do to move forward. Instead Obama acted like a coward and lost a friend and a chance.

I don’t think he can recover. Sure, Barack Obama can go on to get the nomination and perhaps be President but he will not be a great man, he will just be another opportunistic politician. He could have been a statesman.

4 responses to “Obama’s Missed Opportunity

  1. mulloverthis

    “Black liberation theology”?
    Where was Jesus on this “theology”? Christ is not divided. The Word of God needs to be the primary focus in equipping ALL PEOPLE to live peaceably with one another and be effective witnesses in the earth. That is how theology should be linked to bridging the racial, classist, ethnic, cultural divides. This is a bunch of hogwash, putting it mildly to justify nonsense. Black people are not liberated to swing back in offenses, but liberated in not doing wrong to recompense wrongs done to us. We are liberated when we live like Christians that fear God, so fear one another . Obama can’t be used to bridge what he does not comprehend himself. And, his own words or willingness to adopt those of speechwriters speaks volumes about his own level of understanding of the Word of God. Abortion and homosexuality are not “workable” in God’s sight. Social ills and sin must be stood against by any Christian. Obama is not there yet. http://www.mulloverthis.wordpress.com

  2. politicaldookie

    My point was that, properly situated, “liberation theology” could be understood as an appropriate tool for the time.





  4. Hmmm, I happen to be black and I do not find black liberation ‘thoelogy’ to be ‘helpful.’ It is totally antithetical to Christiian theology. Rev. Wright used a captive audience to spread for untruths to people.
    It is appropiate for any time. It’s a ruse for spreading false claims and promoting division.
    I do -however – think Sen. Obama can truly not be considered part of the ‘BLT.’ He supports the number one killer of Africa Americans – abortion.

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