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Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Obama and Oprah: Talk of the Town













By Rev. Lainie Dowell

The primary campaign of the Presidential Election 2008 may be over but the decision is still undetermined as to who the official nominee will be. Can we agree that a lot can happen to effect this outcome between now and the Democrat convention to be held in Denver this August? For example, the Republicans will begin in earnest to press their own platform and candidate, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), as the next President.

President George W. Bush may not be considered "the people's choice," but he surely must be God's choice. And, despite outcries to the contrary, Americans had better be thankful that he was in office when September 11, 2001, struck and woke Americans to the crucial need for us to consider taking drastic measures to stop the worldwide agenda of terrorists to destroy this nation, Israel, and western civilization, as we know it. And he led the way.


The Democrats have come closer to choosing a nominee, but the Obama-Oprah questions persist. Despite her long-standing resolve to not publicly endorse any one candidate, Oprah decided to step upon the stage during the primary campaign and supported Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) in his bid for the White House. And, in her own bold, inimitable way, she proceeded to take Obama, a virtual unknown on the national scene, and turn the spotlight on him.

But, whenever you add Oprah to the mix, then what you get is a massive following that appears to be both unstoppable and unbeatable. After all, it has not been that many years ago that people were encouraging her to throw her hat into the ring; but she declined. She chose to remain at the helm of her own multimillion dollar company, Harpo Productions.

That was then and this is now. Ever since her grandiose endorsement of Obama, so much has been made of him being a man who is able to gather the masses like a Pied Piper even when Oprah does not show up on the campaign trail with him. But you must remember, he is also trained as a professional community organizer and that is what he does best. He has talked his way out of Chicago's Trinity United Church of Christ and Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr., pastor, straight into the hallways of Harpo Productions; and, from there, he is headed in the direction of the White House while still being a virtual unknown entity.

During the mid-1980s, Obama and Oprah met in Chicago, Illinois, when they attended the church where their former pastor, Rev. Wright, recently retired and is the Pastor Emeritus.

Oprah and her followers have treated Obama like a man from out of the Chicago wilderness-like environs of life who has come draped in this radiant light of awakening. And, for the most part, he has proceeded to wake up quite a following of his own. But, if the nation did not know who he was before, then a whole lot less is known about him now - by design. The lingering problem about him is that not nearly enough is known to entrust him with the keys to the White House and the security codes which are revealed to only the Commander-in-Chief, who is charged with defending this nation.

We have Oprah to thank for that. She plucked him out from among the dissenting Democrat stables, anointed him, crowned him with her many riches that surround her empire, and gave him a hefty push in the direction of the White House, as only a noted, wealthy, black female entrepreneur could do. And she called out to ask -- Is he the one? Is he the one?

And then Oprah stood firmly pressed into the mike and boomed, "I do believe that he is the one!" And the one and only Obama stepped forth to the adulation of the crowd while grinning ear to ear after she called his name and crowned him for all to see, as the next President OBAAAMAAA!!!!

But, hold on a second. There is nothing in our Constitution that says we have to elect a candidate based on their race, skin color, or for that matter, gender. Perhaps, sometime or another this nation might digress and that might become the case, but not in my lifetime. This country has come too far to be recognized as the strongest nation in the free world to allow either black or white racial pride or gender to get in the way of how we elect the best possible candidate to lead this nation especially at a time of war.

Moreover, between Oprah's decision and her endorsement, we have not found out that much more about the man, because his story keeps changing. But, in the fulness of time, the seal was broken. And it was not Obama who did it. As we watched with baited breath, the facade was lifted, when the media obtained access to a YouTube video showing Obama's now former pastor, Rev. Wright, preaching his usual fiery sermon about how hateful and evil this country and President Bush are. I mean, he could do nothing right for this country to let Rev. Wright preach it.

Nevertheless, Obama and Oprah are the talk of the town, as they find themselves in the middle of a mess of their own making. This past year and throughout the primary campaign, Obama was losing the all-important popular vote and delegate count to his co-candidate, Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY).

She was more experienced and was hailed to be the frontrunner from the Democrat camp. He, on the other hand, was less so and a newcomer on the national political stage. But, he came with the game plan in hand, which was to say nothing and do nothing to draw attention to himself and let the media enable him to continue to slip under the radar of journalistic scrutiny. It worked for months until the now infamous video opened up the floodgates. However, instead of sinking Obama's "Ship of State" early on, it propelled him to sail on with even more confidence; and, yet, he was still all wet behind the ears.

But for the fact that Obama is a black man who has endeared himself to so many of the white voters, female in particular, he could not have become presumptive nominee for President of the United States.

At the same time, we remember how Geraldine Ferraro was raked over the coals for making a similar statement during the primary. That ought to alarm every American as a foretaste of things to come in the form of censorship regarding any future discussions about Obama or his family and friends.

Despite what it now appears to be, many outraged voices are rising across this country against the Obama-Oprah-Democrat campaign to rush to seat him as their candidate. And, as Oprah watches her media ratings plummet, she must be aware that her star is fading fast among her own faithful following.

When she chose Obama over Clinton, many of her white female viewers said they felt betrayed, because she backed the inexperienced black male candidate instead of the white experienced female during this historic time.

Nevertheless, the two "Os" have kept their counsel and their drumbeat continues to go forth to make Obama the Democrat nominee. Their rush to judgement overlooks any statesman-like demeanor on the political stage; and it is, perhaps, symptomatic of the nation clamoring for change. But what kind of change? And when?

It appears that Obama may have edged Clinton out of the Presidential race, but his own star is on the decline, as well. He has secretly worked from behind the scene, to rush the all-important nomination process in his favor.

During the recent televised deliberations of the Democrat Rules Committee (DRC), upon the appeal by Sen. Clinton, the Michigan contingency admitted Obama voluntarily took his name off the ballot and citizens were told to write in "Uncommitted." That was done to deliberately deter Sen. Clinton's gains during that primary.

During that DRC meeting to consider whether or not to seat the earlier discounted delegates of Florida and Michigan and to give them a vote at the Denver Convention in August, Donna Brazille, a superdelegate and member of the DRC, reminded those gathered that if the DRC gave Obama any delegates from Michigan when he had voluntarily removed himself from their ballot and, also, to then take four of Clinton's delegates and give them to Obama, as Brazille said, "That is cheating." Stay tuned!

Is Obama the man for all seasons? Or is he really the man for all reasons depending on the question he is asked? Where did he come from? It takes an Atlas to research his genealogical background. Why has he failed to give more than platitudes and canned speeches? And why are masses of people content to feed on his stump spiel that he can bring change and hope rather than to demand from him substantial responses on the issues facing this nation now and for years to come? Indeed, can he even be trusted to give a truthful response based on prior researched documentation?

Citizens must remain free to demand a more substantive answer without being labelled as bigots, racists, detractors, and haters by either the Obama faction or the media. And, yet nothing has come from either Obama, Oprah, the media, or the masses which would satisfy the need to find him credible and trustworthy for such a sobering responsibility as leader of the free world.

In the words of singer, Bonny Raitt, Let's give them something to talk about.

The truth is, everytime anyone raises a question for this man who would be President to respond, either Obama or one of his surrogates steps up to either change the subject or else blur the issue at hand and run out the clock to leave it hanging. But what we need for them to do is to call for Obama to address so many of these unanswered questions.

For example, Why did Obama remain under Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr.'s pastorate for so long without speaking out against him preaching racist rhetoric or else leaving that church until recently, after he was forced to do so but without fully distancing himself?

Why did Obama publicly disinvite his pastor's participation to announce his candidacy for President; and, yet, fail to inform the public that he and his family had already prayed and received Rev. Wright's blessings immediately before they went before the cameras?

Why has Obama maintained close friendships with known and admitted terrorists, such as William Ayers and his wife, Bernadine Dohrn?

Why does Obama continue to say that he and his wife, Michelle, entered into questionable (i.e., "bone-headed") real estate transactions with Tony Rezko and his wife, Rita, when he was in the Chicago state legislature and both Obama and Michelle are lawyers?

Why has Obama refused to publicly acknowledge and reveal the part he played with Rev. Wright and Minister Louis Farrakhan to organize the 1995 Million Man March, since he is also a trained professional organizer himself?

Why did Obama personally approach his Chicago friend, Dr. Conrad Worrill, of the National Black United Front, and ask for his support both during his 2004 campaign for the state legislature (IL) and his 2008 bid for President, knowing his ongoing position on black power and black unity to the exclusion of white people?

Why does Obama continue to say that he never was a Muslim, when he has left a long paper trail to the contrary?

What is Obama's relationship to his friend, Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), black Muslim in Congress who has made no secret of his bold agenda to foster lawful incorporation of the Islamic Qur'an and, thereafter, Sharia law upon Americans as the law of this land, after his already having had a resolution passed in Congress to celebrate a month of Ramadan? And this nation needs to know what they both know about their friend Minister Louis Farrakhan's black Muslim agenda or the Islamic plans of Rep. Ellison waiting in the wings to present to Congress.

Wait a minute, I just said something. Don't let that go by so quickly.

Why does Obama resolve to press for permanent adoption of the policies which are anathema to societal traditions and mores of the majority of this nation's citizenry (e.g., pro-life abortions, same-sex laws of all types, withdrawal of military from theaters in the Middle East and elsewhere, higher taxes, less national security, destruction of family and Judeo-Christian values, and censorship of first amendment rights to individual free speech and the Christian community, in particular)?

What are Obama's plans, if he should become President? Both he and his wife are already showing us what is in store but are we paying attention? Does he intend for him and his wife to host a White House gathering of all their friends he was forced to drop along the way in order to satisfy and to get by white voters as a bloc?

What this nation needs are more journalists who will persist in compiling and reporting the whole story this side of Obama's run for the White House. If not, then we face not only Obama's possible nomination and election but also at least four to eight years of leadership under a man who is an ill-prepared, inexperienced, political wannabe who has only his own interests at heart. And what that might be, he is keeping close to the vest.

I am not yet in total agreement with many of the policy positions of Sen. John McCain (R-AZ); but, as of this moment, he is still the last great hope for keeping our nation on its Constitutional path that our Founding Fathers envisioned for us centuries ago. McCain seems to understand that change for change sake which could possibly involve the dismantling of this entire Republic is not the answer that we are willing to live with or have our children live to become accustomed to sometime down the road.

This year seems to present a failure of up and coming leadership. And, if the truth be told, we would admit that we do not have great choices in this all-important election. But, our best chance is with that person who has long demonstrated the most experience; the most impressive legislative track record; the ability to reach across the aisle without compromising this nation's ideals; and the one who is the most passionate and trustworthy about defending our God-given American values, traditions, and beliefs.

As we go forth, what we do know is that Obama's agenda, if kept hidden, is not intended to mean this nation any good. But, hey! He would be the first black man in the White House. But, is he the one?

More people than not are responding with a loud and resounding, "No!"

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