We can be slow as well to give greatness its due, a mistake I made myself long ago when I voted against a federal holiday in memory of Dr. King.
I was wrong and eventually realized that, in time to give full support for a state holiday in Arizona. We can all be a little late sometimes in doing the right thing…--Sen. John McCain, 4/5/08 40th Anniversary of Dr. King’s assassination
For three solid weeks, if not a month, my fellow Republicans pounded Sen. Barack Obama for the words and actions of another man, his former pastor of 20 years Rev. Jeremiah Wright. The inference being made was that because Sen. Obama chose to attend Pastor Wright’s congregation Obama is a racist.
I repeatedly warned this was a path that we did not needed to take nor that we should have wanted to take to defeat Sen. Obama because though it made sense to some of us I believed this attack would not gain traction among Obama supporters.
I was right the Rev. Wright story while it dissuaded some did not sufficiently harm the Obama campaign rather it made Republicans look as if we where desperately attempting to attack Sen. Obama by any means necessary. Meaning by projecting Republican’s own weakness onto Sen. Obama that weakness was and is Racism.
So it was only fitting that standing in front of the Lorraine Hotel this past weekend where 40 years ago Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King was assassinated Republican Presidential nominee Sen. John McCain was booed for obliquely acknowledging his own racist past as a 47 year old Senator who voted against making Dr. King’s birthday a national holiday. (Transcript of McCain’s remarks)
For years the state of Arizona refused to recognize the day as a day of significance making Arizona the last state to do so. Sen. John McCain is the classic kind of Racist yet the same holier-than-thou Republicans who excoriated Sen. Obama and Rev. Wright have seemed to have forgotten the history of their own racist candidate, John McCain.
This would be but a foot note in the 2008 presidential campaign were it not for Republicans who self righteously have whipped themselves up in a racial frenzy regarding Sen. Obama’s former pastor Rev. Wright connecting Obama by inference to Wright’s words and ultimately suggesting that because Obama listened to Wright and was a member of Wright’s congregation that Obama somehow bears responsibility for Wright’s words and actions. Republicans have gone as far to label Sen. Obama a racist because he was a member of Rev. Wright’s congregation.
But with Sen. McCain we have no secondary party guilt, no we have McCain’s own words and actions they convict him of the actual racism, racism which Republicans attempt to project on Sen. Obama by association. Sen. McCain’s racism led him to actions, such as voting against the King Holiday and working against acknowledging Dr. King’s accomplishments.
While Sen. McCain attempted to hide behind the military and his POW experience his racism is clearly evident. On Friday McCain said, “I remember first learning what had happened here on the 4th of April, 1968, feeling just as everyone else did back home, only perhaps even more uncertain and alarmed for my country in the darkness that was then enclosed around me and my fellow captives.”
Yet when McCain arrived home and became a Senator at the age of 47 he voted against a national King Holiday in 1983 and according to Buzzflash.com McCain supported efforts in his state of Arizona to repeal the King Holiday in 1987 and opposed the Holiday even as late as 1989.
In 1994 McCain continued his assault on civil rights and voted against funding the commission that’s purpose was to promote the King Holiday.
John McCain’s actual racism in action is the difference between him and Obama. Obama according to Republicans is guilty of going to Rev. Wright’s congregation. McCain is guilty of overt racism and racist acts against the memory of the icon of the civil rights movement in this country Dr. Martin Luther King specifically and against Black people in general. When asked about his record on civil rights Sen. McCain instead of being repentant often becomes combative as he did in this interview about his opposition to the King Holiday.
See how Republican candidate John McCain lies as he attempt to hide behind this POW and military experience as the reason that he didn’t know about racism in American, McCain suggest that there was no racism in the military so he didn’t understand and he had to learn how important Dr. King was.
Though it has been stated that Obama was a member of Wright’s church for twenty years there has not been produced one act of racism on Sen. Obama part.
Furthermore Rev. Wright has been labeled anti-American and racist in spite of the fact that he served his country as a U.S. Marine.
It is being advanced by some Republicans that Wright preaches hate yet there can not be attributed to Wright one instance when the people of his church after a sermon poured out into the streets and rioted, not one burning cross on white people’s lawns, not one lynched white person, not one bombed white church, no one shot, no one killed, no suicide bombings and no one committed any act of violence whatsoever that would support the contention that Rev. Wright was promoting hatred.
Either Rev. Wright is the most ineffectual preacher that ever stood in a pulpit or perhaps his messages where not advocating death and destruction of white America. Wright must feel incompetent, after twenty years of preaching we would have expected at least one roadside bomb in America or one beheading or act of Wright inspired violence wouldn’t we?
Osama bin Laden says the word and hundreds of thousands of people are willing to sacrifice themselves to kill their enemies so what’s wrong with Wright’s preaching that he can’t produce the same results? You saw the videos you heard the messages you’d certainly think that those awe inspiring messages would have produced some action in the last twenty years wouldn’t you?
Yet, John McCain though reserved about his religious beliefs and affiliations did act in a way that was consistent with hate and racism by opposing the efforts of Black people to be treated equally and by opposing legislation that would honor Dr. King a man who epitomized equality.
The irony is no matter how one justifies their hate for Rev. Wright and Sen. Obama there was no actions put to the words of Rev. Wright, words that Republicans are so viscerally attacking.
Yet the soon to be leader of the Republican Party, Sen. John McCain 40 years after the death of Dr. King and now because he is running for president of the United States is now just realizing that maybe he should apologize for his acts of opposition against Blacks and a holiday in the honor of Dr. King.
All Republicans and moderate Democrats alike who vilified Obama via Rev. Wright are now finding that the chickens are coming home to roost in their own racist and very flawed candidate. And if they feel as strongly as they do about Obama’s alleged racism then they must denounce John McCain as strongly as they’ve denounced Obama and Wright.
McCain’s sins are his own not another man’s.
I attempt to warn Republicans not to go down this road against Obama when there were so many other viable ways of demonstrating that Obama should not be president yet you did and now you are caught, trapped in your own self righteous piety.
Now in order not to be seen as completely hypocritical McCain must be denounced with the same visceral hatred as you used against Sen. Obama.
McCain can’t be allowed to hide behind his POW and military experience as an excuse as if he knew nothing about racism in America as if there was no racism in the military. To hear McCain tell it he didn’t understand the importance of Dr. King’s work until he was convinced of it by others.
McCain was a grown man a U.S. Senator and he had to be convinced that civil rights work was justified?
Your racism was only a mistake Sen. McCain? It is interesting how running for President can make one realize that racism is wrong but to use the 40th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s death to excuse your racism and campaign on that day Sen. McCain is still wrong.
And yes you were wrong to harbor racist attitudes as you are wrong to think that your convenient “I found Jesus” moment in front of the Lorraine Hotel on April 4, 2008 is any consolation for the over 40 years history of your racist life Sen. McCain.