May 2, 2008
It's Obama's Character, StupidBy Kyle-Anne Shiver
I picked up a copy of Time magazine yesterday, in which a columnist declared that issues of "character" were a "distraction" in the Presidential race. Obama actually said the same thing in his North Carolina press conference, that the Reverend Wright affair has been a "distraction."
Isn't this what liberals usually say when their own characters come under public scrutiny?
What a heap of pure poppycock!
Character is the primary issue in every Presidential election.
And we, the voters, have an inalienable right to know the specifics, as much as can be discerned, of a candidate's character.
But don't take my word for that. Take John Adams' words on the matter:
Obama has blown his claim to integrity.
We, the people, now have indisputable evidence that Barack Obama lacks the integrity of character to be President.
To some, that might seem a bit extreme. However, writing as the mother of grown children, I have seen some pretty sorry excuses for incorrigible behavior, but I haven't witnessed many as morally repugnant as those offered by Barack Obama concerning his decades-long, close association with Jeremiah Wright.
The words, "morally repugnant," are strong and I use them carefully.
With Obama's Philadelphia-speech, hedging and squirming around specifics, and now with his final, "unequivocal," outright disowning of Jeremiah Wright this week, I have more evidence than I need to conclude that Barack Obama is either one of two things:
Behind Door #1: He is a reprehensible liar, who privately still believes, and has always believed, in the philosophy espoused by his long-time pastor, spiritual mentor and "uncle" figure, Jeremiah Wright, but for opportunistic motives, now publicly disavows his own true beliefs; or
Behind Door #2: He is a man of no integrity whatsoever, who has partaken of another man's friendship and political help for nearly 20 years, who has now publicly dumped and disgraced this benefactor for personal gain. Jeremiah Wright is not some flunky that Obama hired last week out of a far-left think tank or fresh from the halls of Harvard. The two men were close, like family, by the candidate's own pronouncements.
Whether the real Obama is behind Door #1 or Door #2, only Barack Obama now knows for certain. But either way, he has disgraced himself in the eyes of many Americans, and if he offered his hand, some of us older-timers would decline to shake it.
If he truly believes the philosophy of his chosen church, and now denies it because he sees that it is a small-minority view, he defines himself as a wimpy scoundrel, unworthy of being Commander in Chief.
Having the courage of one's convictions is something I would hope my twelve year old would have, and if he didn't, I would be deeply ashamed and know myself to have been a very bad parent. Barack Obama was nearly 30 years old when he first met and befriended Jeremiah Wright, and upon their very first meeting, the Reverend Wright informed Obama that his "fellow clergy" considered him "too radical." He was warned by Wright himself. Obama was no innocent waif, as he now contends.
On the other hand, if Barack Obama vehemently disagrees with the tenets of Wright's philosophy and worldview, but stayed with the man, respected him enough to have him perform a wedding and baptisms, and gave thousands of dollars of his own money to support the black liberation cause, and garnered prestige and political clout from his association with Wright, then Obama demonstrates that he is a man without a well-formed conscience. An unabashed user of another for personal gain.
Some may argue (and have) that Obama could have stayed in this church, in spite of Wright's perverted slant on Christianity, because of the wealth of friends in his church community. This might be true if the contentious beliefs were of fringe importance or would not do harm to one's children, but this was not the case with Trinity and Jeremiah Wright. No man, and certainly no father, would expose his impressionable children to beliefs with which that man so fundamentally disagreed. At least no man with a well-formed conscience and integrity.
Would I take my children to a church where someone like David Duke was passing himself off as a minister of Christianity? Would you?
Every church has a community of believers and a whole lot of charitable outreach going on. One need not compromise his basic morals, nor his intelligence, to find one.
Highfalutin words do not one's character make.
From day one of this presidential campaign, Barack Obama has drawn crowds of enthusiastic Americans with his polished oratory and often borrowed phrases. Yet, we are all aware that a man's word is only as good as the character that backs them up in action.
And we all know, too, that words can be deceptive.
Obama is well aware of the power of words himself, as he eloquently expounds upon in his book, The Audacity of Hope:
In his book, Obama asks readers to believe that he is a politician of a different sort, one who would not stoop to deception in any malevolent thirst for power. This is what he asks American voters to believe now.
He asks us to believe that he is not an unprincipled phony.
At 47 years old, Barack Obama had no substantive experience to bring to the table in his bid for the Presidency. He has staked his entire campaign, with his utter lack of experience, on his judgment and the content of his own character. His words to that effect, really, since there is nothing of record to back up his audacious claims.
Obama tells us that he has keen judgment, that he knows the ways of the world.
Obama tells us that he has a strong "moral compass," that he knows right from wrong.
Obama tells us, the American people, that we should give him the keys to the White House and all the power that goes with them on the strength of his word alone that he knows what he's doing and can change America, presumably for the better.
Obama's actions over 20 years at Trinity, and in the frequent, close company of Jeremiah Wright, and now his day-late-dollar-short denials, belie all his own high-flying words.
No one but Barack Obama knows who he truly is. His words and his outward behavior are the only measures we have regarding the content of his character.
And just as no tree can avoid casting a shadow in the noonday sun, so can no man avoid the scrutiny of his character, especially when he is seeking the highest office in the land.
Barack Obama might have paid more attention to the development of his character and the building of his reputation, than to the flaunting of his audacity, in my opinion.
Character is what the Presidency boils down to, and in this regard, Mr. Obama is most ashamedly lacking.