A Texas Civil Rights Review Editorial
Terms like ignorance, indignation, hatred, divisiveness, and racism surely apply to the typhoon that swirls around the sound bites of Rev. Jeremiah Wright. You can tell by how nobody pays any attention to Rev. Wright’s insistence that he be judged by theological standards.
For his own part, the right Reverend couldn’t have been more clear about it. When he was invited onto Fox News March 1, he begged for a conversation that would be literate in the works of black liberation theology. But this is the conversation that was denied to him. Instead, the Fox News interrogator smirked about Wright’s “black church” and asked a hateful question about why there can be no “white churches”.
Perhaps Fox News should break the ice and name itself White News, if that would satisfy their juvenile sense of fair and balanced branding.
Rev. Wright is a preacher, a pastor, and a theologian of accomplishment and distinction who has now been relegated to a whipping boy of ugly white backlash. It is quite hateful and divisive what has been done to the man, and a bolder crop of presidential candidates might be calling on so many grown men to apologize for their disrespectful treatment of the Reverend.
Returning to the juvenile question of why there is such a thing as Black Entertainment Television, but not White Entertainment Television as such, or a proud black church but not a proud white church as such, one only has to know the basic facts of American history. Pretending that one does not know these basic facts while at the same time drawing a salary as a professional journalist is stark evidence of racist malice aforethought.
In ten days, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright is scheduled to be honored in Texas; therefore, Texas has the opportunity to honor him properly as a distinguished theologian and pastor.
Here’s all the Governor has to say as he hands Rev. Wright the first James Farmer, Sr. award for unflinching courage to speak truth to power:
Rev. Jeremiah Wright, I am not a theologian, I am a Governor. You and I have chosen lines of work which have long traditions of close relations. There has hardly been a time when your profession and mine have not rubbed close together. Thank goodness the ancient Hebrew people had the strength of character to treasure the words of their prophets, even when the words must have been scathing to hear. We are here to say that today, we commit to the courage it takes to hear a prophet, and to the justice required to honor the prophet’s voice as an indispensable public good. This is a free state in a free country, and we have the audacity to hope that you to will enjoy your stay.
Note: we have found one item on the internet that pays Rev. Wright the respect that he requested from Fox News: to be treated as a man of the cloth. Please see “Race and Religion in Context” by Daniel Pulliam at getreligion.org.
See also Mary Mitchell, ” Wright caught in undeserved political glare: Whites don’t get it, blacks do — and it’s time to move on” (March 20, 2008) Chicago Sun-Times.
Oops! Posse gets wrong man. See Fox News’ effort to curb ‘excesses’ of the great media riot of ’08.