Notes From A Black Pastor On Reverend Wright

Notes From A Black Pastor On Reverend Wright


With this latest pastor flare-up, I stumbled across an old post from Dennis Sanders about Wright in March.

He comes at this story from a very unique perspective, and as much as I’d like for the Wright story to just go away because I don’t think Obama should be held responsible for what somebody else has said, Sanders made some good points…

Most African American preachers will inject social concerns into their sermons. Because of our experience with slavery and later segregation, we tend to see Christianity in a more prophetic role, where God is on the side of the downtrodden. While I mostly preach in predominately white churches (and I tend to have a more subdued style than most black preachers) I do tend to talk about care for the poor and about the fact that God loves and accepts all regardless of color or sexual orientation. I believe that as Christians we are called to strive for justice and I do try to make that point in my sermons.

That said, the sermons by Rev. Wright go waaaay over the top. He paints an America that I don’t recognize and throws in falsehoods and a tinge of anti-Semitism that I believe shames all African American preachers.

There is no way you can explain away Wright’s belief that 9/11 was basically “just desserts” on America, especially a few days after the event. Then there is his giving into dark conspiracy theories such as the one where the government gives black people the drugs. Or, his talk of Zionism as white racism.

There is just something wrong about what Rev. Wright is doing. It’s not that he isn’t patriotic enough as some on the right are yelping: it’s that this man seems an inverse of the late Jerry Falwell: a mean-spirited preacher that uses the Bible to further his agenda.

Obama may want Wright to go away, and he already has to a degree, but I’ve talked with a bunch of people who just can’t get over him being at that church for 20 years. And do know that this point will be what he’s hammered on again and again and again during the campaign season. Why did you stay? I mean, even Dennis Sanders thinks that the appearance will be that he agrees with most of what Wright has said, even if that’s not the case.

Have you noticed similar things from people you’ve talked to?

  • mike mcEachran

    I’ve appealed to family members who live in Florida to support Obama, and that’s the one thing that hangs them up. How could he stay in that church listening to those sermons for 20 years?

    My conclusion is that he did hear Rev. Wrights speaches those 20 years, and accepted Rev. Wright for the complex and flawed individual that he is. I attended a baptist church during my childhood, and I gaurantee that 50% or more of the congregation didn’t agree with everything our pastor said – you know, Jews are going to hell, you’ve got to turn the other cheek all the times – except in times of war – stuff like that…I remember hearing conversations about it. But one’s pastor and other in the church are like family. You take the good with the bad. And the church is way more than one man, it’s a community. That’s the part of Obama’s explanation that rings true to me. He loved the church and most of what Rev. Wright stood for. But like a beloved, slightly crazy Uncle, the pastor went over the top sometimes, and maybe often. But most of what he says, is kind of true, if over the top. The US should learn to accept responsibility for it’s actions. The US has used black people as guinea pigs with deadly diseases (the Tuskeegee affair). Politicians do have to say the politically correct thing, etc. He’s just waaay over the top about it. But much of the substance of what he says is correct. Black people understand and can filter through the Reverend’s hyperbole. White people are shocked and afraid. Our lily white ears just can’t take it. “Oh, no! Did you hear how angry he is? If they take over, they’ll kill us…!!!”

    It’s like my mom locking the car door when she see’s a black man on the street. That’s what’s going on…

  • rob

    I think it has more to do with the people one counts as advisors. I doubt anybody wants a whack job like Wright to have the ear of the President, so now it’s a gut feeling over whether or not voters believe he’ll have it if Obama is President.

  • Gene Lalor

    Mike McEachran, aside from seeming semi-literate at best, seems beyond naive! Please see my website and OBAMA XLII: FATHER MICHAEL PFLEGER–A WHITE WRIGHT
    May 30th, 2008

    As a Catholic, I can say there are all sorts of priests nowadays.

    Most are good and devout men. However, many sign up because as Father Joe, who performed our marriage ceremony, baptized our children, and subsequently quit the priesthood said, “Where else can a homosexual find so many vulnerable, cloistered men than in a seminary?” Many others take Holy Orders because they can’t do anything else and still others because they must just like the uniform.

    As for Father Pfleger, please see: and click on the YouTube link.

    Pfleger seems to me to be a self-loathing White man who may also fit into one of the last 3 categories cited above. Michelle Malkin calls him Obama’s white cheerleader, (

    Others say he’s just an Obama “counselor,” (much like Jesse Jackson was Bubba’s counselor?):

    I simply call him a disgrace!

    And, Mike, be sure to view and listen to the videos of Revs. Wright, Pfleger, AND Manning on my website!


  • mike mcEachran

    Leave it to a guy who quotes Michelle Malkin to level a personal insult in his first sentence. Very creative, Gene. Here’s my response: 😛

    And what’s your point anyway? That Father Pflegler is a closeted homosexual/priest, frustrated musical theatre performer, nutjob? No? Really? Headline: they’re all nutjobs, Gene. What does it have to do with Obama? What does Father Joe have to do with you? Religion attracts the nutjobs, as your church has proven.

    Anyway, it’s the black congregation in the background loving the sermons that’s got everybody freaked out – slapping their thighs, standing up and cheering. That’s what disturbs the whities, not the preachers. “Did Obama stand and holla?” Probably. It’s entertainment. It’s funny to this crowd. Guess what, folks, there is a cultural divide. Maybe we should take Gene’s advice and condemn things we don’t understand. That’s work so well for us for the last eight years, why give it up now.

  • citizen wells

    When speaking of Reverend Manning, it’s important to mention another individual first, to put things into the proper perspective:

    On January 23rd 2008 on the Jeff Rense radio program, a man named Larry Sinclair made stunning claims about Senator Barack Obama. Sinclair claimed that in 1999 he met Barack Obama and Obama purchased and supplied him with cocaine. Sinclair also claims that he performed an oral sex act on the Senator and that the Senator smoked crack cocaine during the evening : “I smoked his pole, he smoked my crack”.

    Larry Sinclair has thus far failed to produce a single viable piece of evidence, yet is continuing to take advantage of every media outlet and communication medium in an attempt to extort money from Senator Obama. He has staged phoney press conferences, started numerous blogs, contacted all mainstream media outlets with his flimsy and fundamentally unverifiable accusations. Is it any wonder nobody in the mainstream media wants to risk their career and credibility covering this farce?

    Legally and morally, the burden is on Sinclair to prove his allegations, not on Obama to disprove them. Larry Sinclair knows this, but he is banking (quite literally) on the fact that the court of public opinion operates quite differently than a court of law, and isn’t making any substantial effort to prove his accusations.

    He knows that it’s hard to prove you DIDN’T do something, and is rallying the ignorant under this pretense to send him contributions (and any other number of other ‘fundraising’ activities of questionable legality). He’s got them so worked up that several of them are posting threats on his blog ( to kill Obama if he gets elected.

    And as if that weren’t enough, this so-called Reverend (Mr. Manning) seems to worship Larry Sinclair *more* than he would worship God. He supports Sinclair to the hilt (no pun intended), asking the public to pray for Sinclair, even though Sinclair is admittedly and openly homosexual, a drug user, a liar, a thief, and is clearly and unashamedly unrepentant.

    Manning, like Sinclair, is looking for 15 minutes of fame and a fatter pocketbook, and both are nuttier than a chipmunk’s poop.