Today I agree with her

As does just about everyone else in America, I have my problems with Ann Coulter.  Liberals hate her all the time, unreservedly; conservatives distance themselves from her when she falls into self-advertising statements that are so offensive they obscure any more relevant point she might be making.  Today, I have to say that Ann, snarky and offensive as she is, makes an unpleasantly stated, but valid point about the devolution of the race debate in America.

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  • Helen Losse

    Problem is, too many people want to talk about race, but few want to listen about race.

  • Gringo

    Ann Coulter spoke a lot of sense: Treat fairly, but do not patronize. I was born and raised in a small town in the northeast. Before the 1964 Civil Rights Bill had been passed, I had two black teachers in elementary school. Had my father been more efficient in his rehabbing of our old farmhouse, one of the teachers would have rented an apartment above our kitchen, but he didn’t complete it in time. I was friends with a black elementary school classmate and the classmate’s family, and though I am a bit of a curmudgeon, that friendship continues decades after elementary school, even with my living thousands of miles away from my hometown the last half of my life.

    While I have practiced fair treatment all my life, I see no point in patronizing nut-cases like Reverend Wright. Having listened to his sermons, I see no other way to describe the good Reverend. Nor do I see the point in patronizing inappropriate behavior, such as the black “guest” that put a gun to my head when I was living in a house on Telegraph Avenue in Oakland many years ago.

    As regards Reverend Wright’s referring to Blacks as Jews, that I simply see in the tradition of black churches, where Blacks in slavery in the US were compared to Jewish slaves in Pharaoh’s Egypt. Recall the spiritual, “Let My People Go.”

    However, Wright also associates with and honors an Anti-Semite such as Farrakhan, and in his sermons depicts Palestinians as victims of the Jews- the same Palestinians who support suicide-bombings- while simultaneously viewing Jews as Blacks. IOW, Wright defies all reason by simultaneously holding contradictory views. You don’t view Jews as Blacks while simultaneously viewing Palestinians as victims of the Jews/Israelis, if you want to remain coherent. You don’t view Jews as Blacks while associating and honoring an anti-Semite such as Farrakhan, if you want to remain coherent. That to me makes Wright a nut-case. Obama loses credibility to associate with such a nut-case for 20 years.

    Were Wright’s political views subordinate to his theological views, I might be inclined to give Obama a pass. However, Wright’s sermons are suffused with his political views. Theology becomes politics, and vice versa.

    Ann here is blunt, but truthful, in my opinion.

    To be fair, Obama hinted that we might have one way out: If we elect him president, then maybe, just maybe, we can stop talking about race.

    If you consider Ann Coulter to be a little blunt in her assessment, please consider this quote from an Obama speech in San Antonio.

    And if that child should ever get the chance to travel the world. And someone should ask her, where is she from. We believe that she should always be able to hold her head high with pride in her voice when she answers, “I am an American” That is the course we seek. That is the change we are calling for.

    Vote for Obama, and you can be proud of America. I worked overseas, was fluent in the language of the countries I worked in, and NEVER felt ashamed to be an American. In fact, my being American was often a factor in people extending me hospitality. Obama’s insinuation that we cannot be proud of America unless we vote for him is downright insulting.

    While some might be of the opinion that an American should be ashamed of its record regarding bigotry and racism, from an overseas perspective, America doesn’t look that bad. In Latin America I was invited into two homes that featured prominently displayed portraits of Hitler, something I have never seen in the US. I heard attitudes expressed towards Blacks and Indians in Latin America that could only be described as racist. At the same time, I saw much evidence of interracial marriage, and much evidence of people of different races working and living together in harmony.
    In one country an elderly Black woman called me a “white m.f.c.” for wearing Bermuda shorts- which were extremely common on males in that country. At the same time, I saw plenty of evidence of cross-racial harmony in that particular country. There is no easy answer. I simply returned to the US with the idea that ethnocentrism was for better or worse, somewhat universal, as was brotherhood. No easy answers. Just do the best you can, and don’t feel guilty about it. In summation, the record does not suggest that the US is the great sinner with regard to racism. People who would be at each other’s throats outside the US, get along here.

    I repeat: I found Obama’s insinuation that we needed to vote for him to be proud of America to be downright insulting.
    If some consider this off topic, I apologize.


    Ironic, isn’t it…all of it. The poster child of this election season, the man who did not want it to be about race, the smooth talking, soft speaking, let’s change , change and we can change, chooses an angry preacher to be his mentor.

    The conflict/debate is not between the races, the conflict is within Obama and his love/hate relationship with his absent mother, absent father and himself.

    Rev. Wright was the vehicle for Obama’s anger and he would have served himself better to have chosen a good therapist.

  • Mike Devx

    Some criticisms about Ann Coulter’s article, then a thought…

    First, allow me a little snarkiness myself. Ann says:
    “As a post-racial American, I do not believe “the legacy of slavery” gives black people the right to be permanently ill-mannered. ”

    Wow! This coming from someone who is herself permanently ill-mannered. In her case it’s a put-on, to sell her image and to sell books. Takes some chutzpah.

    Now the serious criticism. Take a look at these two quotes:

    “So for half of Rev. Wright’s 66 years, discrimination against blacks was legal — though he never experienced it personally because it existed in a part of the country where he did not live. For the second half of Wright’s life, discrimination against whites was legal throughout the land.”

    “Obama felt perfectly comfortable throwing his white grandmother under the bus. He used her as the white racist counterpart to his black racist “old uncle,” Rev. Wright.”

    Let me get this straight. Ann feels perfectly comfortable making a moral equivalency between Jim Crow discrimination against blacks – and the slavery of hundreds of years before it – with the discrimination of quotas caused by affirmative action. She treats them as EXACTLY THE SAME. Don’t believe me? Read her article again and please point out to me where she doesn’t treat them exactly the same.

    Then she castigates Obama for making a moral equivalency between his pastor and his grandmother. She spends the second half of her article castigating him for this.

    An article that does this – that contains her own moral equivalency argument about racial discrimination while criticizing his moral equivalency argument – when hers is FAR more outrageous than his – is utterly laughable. Ridiculous. In reading this, I found it immediately offensive.

    I agree that a direct comparison, between a grandmother whom you don’t choose and a pastor whom you do choose, is a very weak argument. It is offensive and embarrassing to see a relative’s nastiness exposed publicly. Yet so many articles and talk show commentaries and callers have focused on this, without any commentary on the other aspects of his speech, that again it seems too one-sided. As Helen L said above, there’s a lot of talking past each other about race but absolutely no listening. (Actually a lot of yelling past each other, not talking, and with ears and minds firmly closed.) On both sides. That’s the way it’s been for my whole life.

    If Obama is guilty of “throwing his grandmother under the bus”, then so am I. I’ve discussed growing up in a severely racist family and believing their ideas to be normal. How many times did I hear the “We should round em all up, put em on boats, and ship em back to Africa, if they’re so mad at us”, inevitably followed up by, “Yeah, and sink the boats halfway across.” This was said with a bitter gallows humor, and there was humor, but the underlying disgust always remained.

    This pastor controversy has scraped the wound wide open again, and Obama’s speech can’t lessen the rawness, despite his pleas not to engage in the usual divisiveness.

    Many blacks are totally convinced that their anger and bitterness at “White America” over slavery and then apartheid is justified. They have absorbed this so deeply that it is a part of their very psychological makeup and there’s no getting rid of it.

    Then I see Malcolm Shabazz, the leader of the New Black Panther Party, on Hannity and Colmes last night, espousing this anger and claiming a superior morality – a sneering superiority on racism – and I had to turn the TV off in near-total anger and disgust. It’s too raw, and I’m too angry. I’m sick of him and all similar to him. I’m sick of this one-sided hatred of America and the painting of all of “White America” as racist forever and ever. I’m sick of the refusal to acknowledge how far this country has come in fifty years, where no other country has made anywhere near the same progress. I’m sick of it! I’m furious at them and I want nothing to do with them and I don’t ever want to hear their ridiculous statements again. I’m angry again this morning even thinking about it.

    That divide is the crux of what is driving all this discussion for the past few days, I believe.

    The rawness is thoroughly exposed, on both sides. Nothing Obama can do will change this. We remain as bitterly divided as ever, and Obama’s speech merely touched upon the vast divide in this perception between many blacks and many whites. It’s raw and it’s deep and now it is identified with and tied to Obama. Every time a Malcolm Shabazz appears, we’ll tie our fury at him with Obama. I can’t see how his campaign overcomes this.

  • Helen Losse

    Has it occurred to anyone else that Wright may not be racist at all but guilty of living in the past and not fighting modern racism with modern techniques. Racism is clearly different than it was during slavery and Jim Crow times. No one questions the fact that slavery existed. No one denies that the US had segregated schools. What people question is how long these will be part of the rhetoric. Right?

    I know the complaints that schools now teach more about minorities than mainline. And it’s partially true. But maybe, just as educators don’t know how to incorporate Black history into American history, black preachers and civil rights workers don’t know how to incorporate modern day techniques into the present dialog.

    Race is an issue. Racism is still present. But it is not the old racism. It is a lot easier to fight the racism of the 60s than it is today’s racism. Racism prior to the Civil right movement was open and glaring and rude. We live in politically correct American, which is good in some aspects, but it covers up a festering systemic racism that white people deny. Denial in and of itself must frustrate black people no end. To say nothing of stupidity and terms like “post-racial American.”

    Has it occurred to anyone that blacks no longer have the rhetorical advantage they one had, but they still have a huge, huge problem?

  • Bookworm

    Helen, you are asking the right questions. Blacks do have a huge problem, but they’re not addressing the huge problem, because they’re still clinging to the rhetoric and attitudes of the past. To use a weak analogy, it’s as if Ford Motors, recognizing that it is falling back sales, set its R&D department to figure out better uses for tail fins and running boards. No matter how much time and money Ford spent on that effort, it would not solve its problem.

    I don’t think anyone at my blog has had the blindness to insinuate that things for American blacks are hunky dory. However, I think we are mostly agreed — and in this way strongly disagree with Obama — that the issues facing American blacks are not the same as those of 40+ years ago, and that the black leadership does the black community a profound disservice by trapping it in that time warp.

  • Helen Losse

    If so, Bookworm, then the folks here need to stop calling this man a racist. That term indicates ignorance not knowledge of what is truly happening. The terms we use matter.

    And with that, I think I’ll be taking off the rest of Holy Week. See you about Monday. Have a good weekend.

  • Ymarsakar

    You might want to read the latest VC post about race relationships, Book.


    I don’t think anyone at my blog has had the blindness to insinuate that things for American blacks are hunky dory.

    As I said before, whether your grievances are real or self-created, the important bit is that tribal minds and cultures are infinitely malleable to more decadent and advanced cultures. The white settlers coming to compete with Amerindians for land, food, and resources were also more decadent, in that they had sanitation, technology, and political unification.

    When a minority feels oppressed, they seek to sink back into ancestral traditions and customs, or some other ancient analogue, in order to find comfort and security through the torturous days. Such sentiments can be easily used and exploited by advanced cultures, who don’t believe in any kind of “ancestral” tradition or foundation of strength. They don’t believe it, but they can use it and use other people’s belief in it for their own purposes.

    The opposite is also true, Book. Just look at the Islamic jihad on women and children. Tribal minds can manipulate decadent civilizations and their sentiments as well. Just because the tribal mind and the civilized mind is totally different, does not mean the two can’t manipulate each other if one leader on one side or another was competent enough to do so. Or weak enough to warrant the attempt.

    Given that blacks have spoken voraciously of white privilege, institutions, and how everything corporate America has done was in a conspiracy to keep the black man poor, uneducated, and primed for exploitation. Is it so hard for the tribal mind of the Los Angeles 1993 riots to consider that the white and Democrat party they were voting for, was also manipulating them?

    Does the synapses not connect or something, Book, or are we expected to believe that the black man will believe the worst of Republicans, with the history of Lincoln and Civil Rights legislation (not to mention a war fought and bled for that ended in Emancipation), while concurrently believing the best of Democrats (the party of slavery and Jim Crow)?

    Regardless, it is pretty apparent that what I am witnessing is simply the civilized and decadent power elites (whether they are white or Jesse Jackson black) controlling the tribal, parochial, and primitive minorities.

    Under these circumstances, I don’t think it really matters whether Wright is a racist or not. Since if he wasn’t, he would still be working for the goals of racists, black and white.

    Btw, Book, the link I provided will probably mirror your views on a couple of things. It is one reason why I am a regular reader of Cassandra.

  • Deana

    Helen –

    I do not believe that Reverend Wright is stupid or even innocently ignorant of what is causing huge portions of black America to remain uneducated and poor. He knows that if the real barrier to advancement was this “festering systemic racism,” there would be absolutely no way possible for millions of black and other non-white people to reach the pinnacles of success here in America. The “system” would somehow find a way to keep them all in check, wouldn’t it?

    As it is, this “system” that you refer to isn’t all that effective. Somehow, those who manage this “system” have forgotten to close all sorts of various loopholes. Otherwise, how else do you explain the increasing number of blacks and other non-whites in colleges and universities? Have you ever perused any one of the number of black magazines like Ebony or Black Entrepreneurs? Those magazines do a very good job at highlighting the success of black Americans – you simply can’t pick up one of those magazines without seeing article after article about successful black Americans in medicine, the sciences, the arts, business, the hospitality industry, and so on. How is all of this possible if a crushing systemic racism is alive and well in America? Who knows? Perhaps the folks who were managing the “system” in every single one of those industries just didn’t show up to work one day and all of these folks just somehow slipped through the cracks.

    Helen, don’t you think that if there really were this pervasive systemic racism, somehow, somewhere, someone would have figured out a way to stop Obama before he even became a senator? What about all the other black politicians around America? How did they make it?

    Rev. Wright is racist to the core but that isn’t the worse thing about him. The worst thing about him is that he knows exactly what is causing so many of his fellow black Americans to be shackled to poverty and ignorance but instead of doing what is necessary to truly help them better their lives, he fans the flames of hatred, fear, and ignorance, knowing full well that it will simply make these people more dependent on him. He does not work to liberate his flock – his efforts are geared to increase his own power.

    Is there racism in America? Yes. There will always be racism and not just in America – it’s part of the failed human condition. But it is wrong to know the source of a problem and still choose to focus attention elsewhere. To do so can only lead to more people continuing to be afflicted by the same problem.


  • Ymarsakar

    The “system” would somehow find a way to keep them all in check, wouldn’t it?

    That is why he says “God Damn America”, because he does not believe America has been blessed by God or anyone else in terms of prosperity, justice, security, and liberty.

    To him, the system already has kept them all in check, or at least the people he needs to have blacks think have been kept in check.

    Helen, don’t you think that if there really were this pervasive systemic racism, somehow, somewhere, someone would have figured out a way to stop Obama before he even became a senator?

    You should hear what people around me here in the South have been saying. They think Obama’s going to be assassinated precisely for those reasons, just like the Right assassinated JFK when he went on changing the “system”.

    This was one profile I got done writing concerning the people I have met

    He does not work to liberate his flock – his efforts are geared to increase his own power.

    Which is actually something the Scientific Pacifist would agree with, and so would the people who thought Obama would be assassinated if he became President. You might be wondering how can these people hold so many inconsistent thoughts in their heads, and my answer is “life experiences”. You believe what you have experienced. If your experiences are inconsistent or lacking in a critical component or perspective, then what do you expect?

    Wright is just one reason why blacks and others have “inconsistent life experiences”.

    There will always be racism and not just in America – it’s part of the failed human condition.

    Racist beliefs in China concerning blacks would be on the Jim Crow level except China don’t have many blacks. Since most Americans have never lived in China, it is easy to convince them that Americans are arrogant and a pretty racist country, given the parochial attitudes of most people.

    Cosmopolitan beliefs, true cosmopolitan beliefs Deana, are always rare. No matter what skin color someone has.

  • Ymarsakar

    Lately, some of my more layered comments are being held in moderation, which Book is quick to approve once in, but I still give out this notice in case you replied immediately after me before my comment appeared. Once Approved, the date system makes the comment jump above newer comments.

  • jj

    “Black theology refuses to accept a God who is not identified totally with the goals of the black community. If God is not for us and against white people, then he is a murderer and we had better kill him. The task of black theology is to kill Gods who do not belong to the black community… Black theology will accept only the love of God which participates in the destruction of the white enemy. What we need is the divine love as expressed in Black Power, which is the power of black people to destroy their oppressors here and now by any means at their disposal. Unless God is participating in this holy activity, we must reject his love.” – James H. Cone; black theologist whose words are cited on Rev. Wright’s church website. (And readily available all over Google.)

    Apparently Obama doesn’t own a computer, and never checked out Wright’s website.

    “While it is true that blacks do hate whites, black hatred is not racism.” – Cone

    “All white men are responsible for white oppression.” – Cone

    “I never wandered in the desert for forty years. I was never abused in a Turkish jail. I never owned a slave, and I never was a slave – and neither were you, so get over it.” – George Carlin

  • Helen Losse

    I know I said I was gone until Monday. But I just found this Alton B. Pollard is a personal friend of mine as well as the Dean at the School of Divinity at Howard University
    He was the reason I went back to school to get a master’s degree and studied African American history and religion. The class I took in African American Religious Experience at Wake Forest was taught by Alton Pollard.

  • Helen Losse
  • suek

    And I have a link to offer as well…lots to read out there!

  • suek

    Helen…I strongly disagree with the usa news article…
    Below – copied and pasted – are comments made by individuals on Dr.Sanity’s site, which I thought were particularly relevant to Obama’s speech.

    You _are_ aware, aren’t you, that Obama is an Alinsky disciple? Are you also in favor of Socialism? even Marxism??

    “Obama (and most liberals) said his rhetoric of the country being united soared because ordinary people yearned for it. This is most dishonest at distorting what truly happened since Bush took office.

    Think about it for a sec. For the past seven and more years, the conservative side had been begging/imploring our liberals to come together. United together, our country can accomplish any task. Liberals not only turned it down, they went one-step further of actively sabotage Bush admin effort, any way they can to the point of hurting the country as a whole. Remember the “dissent is the highest form of patriotism”, anyone?

    Now they (the liberals) are saying we CAN unite, we WANT TO unite, just as long as we unite under their conditions! That is not unification, that is fascism.

    always right | Email | Homepage | 03.19.08 – 11:46 am | #”


    “The point I saw was that Barack wanted to get beyond the angry black conspiracy nuts and the angry white conspiracy nuts into forging a unified proletariat full of rage and conspiracy-nuttism against the same enemy: the evil white man who runs private enterprise.

    In other words, for him, getting beyond racism is the sine qua non for a successful launch of the marxist class warfare: until now the Left has been split into tiny groups of mutually antagonistic groups holding each back by the smallness of their goals, respect here, more secure jobs there, the enviroment way out there….

    He fashions himself as the uniter not “for the people” as a whole (though that’s his rhetoric) but for just THOSE people who can nurture a sense of victimhood…. in classic Marxist thought (shot through with the Rev. Wright’s liberation theology and Hard Left Democratic fringe thinking), until all the underclasses energize and focus their ‘united efforts’ via democracy the revolution won’t come.

    This speech telegraphed his goal to take down private enterprise – every little group of haters were excused their hatred in light of the evil corportations that one way or another is “guilty” for their poverty of mind, soul and spirit.

    Government action – spurred into life by a democratic victory of the little groups of haters is seen as the vehicle of settling scores against this enemy of the people: business, private enterprise, the profit motive.

    He wants to unite us in our hatred of those who have more than we do – and use the federal government much like the communists used “the party” to do the ‘leveling’.

    All hatred can be excused – from whatever quarter it comes from – because of the evil of ‘rich white people’. That point was made loud and clear. He wants to move beyond race – only because the unity he seeks is that of the party against private property.
    John | Email | Homepage | 03.19.08 – 4:49 pm | #”

  • Helen Losse

    And your link is bigger than my link, right Suek? But what does it add to the understanding of black POV?

  • Deana

    Suek –

    Thank you for linking to that article on the American Thinker site. Katiz’s experiences speak volumes about the main source of problems faced by black America today. I have always wondered what black people like the gentleman on the airplane in his article must think when they encounter people like Rev. Wright.


  • Deana

    Helen –

    Barak Obama is no Dr. King and he certainly is no Abraham Lincoln.

    Why? Because, in short, both Dr. King and Abraham Lincoln were leaders who took risky steps and gave inspiring speeches to promote the change they believed was needed for the well-being of this country. Their actions and words were not done to benefit themselves but rather to benefit others. And both paid a terrible price for their words and deeds.

    But not Obama. I’m not saying that Obama is a bad man – he isn’t. But to imply (as is done in that U.S. News & World Report article) that he is in the same class as King and Lincoln is incorrect.

    The only reason Obama made that speech is because he got caught. The reality of Rev. Wright was suddently cast in flood lights in front of the entire nation, making it impossible to believe that Obama had somehow been unfamiliar with the apparently dearly held beliefs of the man who has been his mentor and pastor for the past two decades. Obama HAD to go out and make a speech – not for the betterment of others but to save his own skin.


  • judyrose

    Oh Deana, you hit the nail right on the head.

  • suek

    >>And your link is bigger than my link, right Suek?>>

    That’s rather a snide comment. Relevance?

    >> But what does it add to the understanding of black POV? >>

    Ya know…it’s about time that we paid less attention to the black POV. Every other group of people has managed to assimilate. In fact, blacks who _choose_ to assimlate – in this day and age – do so. It’s the blacks who insist on _their_ POV who are the misfits. If you – no matter who or what you are – want success in a particular economy, you have to do it on the terms of that economy. Insisting on doing it “your way” is simply juvenile. Obama was raised white. He suceeded. He then decided that he needed a black persona – for whatever reason. The black persona has adopted the black frustration and rage against the white majority, and guess what…the white majority _rejects_ that. Why does that surprise anyone – especially an intelligent educated person like Obama? Or yourself, for that matter. And why is a black POV any more important than a white POV? They sound like self-centered teenagers who just need to get over themselves and grow up.

    And teenagers are usually angry, too. And blame other people for their failures.

  • Ymarsakar

    Obama also doesn’t believe in the Republican values that Lincoln did. Kinda makes it hard to be on the level of the best the Republican party produced when you can’t even be said to be a Republican.

    Lincoln, like Bush, would never have fought a war of liberation unless situation forced them to. Lincoln Emancipated the slaves because it was required to win the war. Bush liberated Iraq because we needed the manpower of the Arabs there for us to effectively fight other Arabs.

    The same requirement, the same action out of necessity. But Obama’s against it, because people like him aren’t really interested in solving problems for the untold generations that will come. He’s interested in solving the current generation’s problems with a quick fix, and leaving the future to be destroyed by his actions.

    That is nothing that Lincoln or Teddy Roosevelt believed in or did.

  • Ymarsakar

    That’s rather a snide comment. Relevance?

    The relevance is that this is more important to helen than the actual arguments you used or pasted.

    And teenagers are usually angry, too. And blame other people for their failures.

    So do Palestinians and Arab honor killings, Suek. That didn’t stop anybody from profiting off those groups or creating those groups, though.

  • Helen Losse
  • Bookworm

    Wright’s sermon: we are historically an evil people, and we got what’s coming to us. Everything else Roland Martin said in the link you provided is babble, meant to apologize for an exceptionally vicious sermon in the wake of a national tragedy.

  • Ymarsakar

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

    Pretty much the same old same old.

    The excuse is just that “people did make things and made terrorists attack, so we must correct this by doing even worse things to those people”.

    Not exactly intellectually stimulating.

    “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.

    This is so transparent to people that comprehend human nature, political manipulation, and the human thirst for power that it is no challenge to decipher at all.

    For one thing, if Wright’s fabrications were true concerning America’s actions, we would already have exterminated all the people that ever could have attacked us. The simple fact that we haven’t is not very easy for Wright to explain away. Because the only true explanation would be “we haven’t done so because we have a conscience”. Something Wright and the people he spoke of have trouble finding to say the least.

    A white ambassador said that y’all, not a black militant.

    I doubt a black militant would be talking about hate begeting hate. In fact, the Black Panthers said the exact opposite, that whatever the white men did to blacks, they will return the favor. He was speaking quite correct English as well, with a certain aura of the fanatic about him. That singlemindedness of purpose and belief.

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

    He was trying to give his speech more credibility by saying it just ain’t him saying these things.

    No ambassador on Fox News would do the “we did X” 8 times as if it was a prepared speech. Wright did that all on his lonesome.