Obama : the theory of the controversial drum

Reading time 5 min.

The profoundness and earnestness of the poignant Obama speech on race is inarguably one of the best rhetorics on race of alltime. The subject was a delicate one in which the complex theory of the controversial drum — beat it softly and no one hears it, beat it hard and it breaks – was tackled with a boldness and expertise many politicians would shy away from.

“As such, Rev. Wright’s comments were not only wrong but divisive, divisive at a time when we need unity; racially charged at a time when we need to come together to solve a set of monumental problems — two wars, a terrorist threat, a falling economy, a chronic health care crisis and potentially devastating climate change; problems that are neither black or white or Latino or Asian, but rather problems that confront us all.”

Would it be right to throw his carcass to the vultures after his direct masacre of Rev. Wright’s pronounciations?

“I can no more disown him than I can disown the black community. I can no more disown him than I can my white grandmother — a woman who helped raise me, a woman who sacrificed again and again for me, a woman who loves me as much as she loves anything in this world, but a woman who once confessed her fear of black men who passed by her on the street, and who on more than one occasion has uttered racial or ethnic stereotypes that made me cringe.”

He violently reprimanded his own spiritual guide, asking him in clear terms to shut up whilst cutting him off in what concerns politics. If he had disowned Rev. Wright (the man who introduced him to his faith) as some cynics are asking for, it would not take long for others to ask him to disown his grandmother. Cynics know no bounds.

But disowning another human being under such circumstances is tantamount to unforgiveness, contrary to the underlying precepts of Obama’s faith.

He has been in the direct line of fire from both races which might tell his capability of filtering the edible from the chaff. Seeking to understand the reason behind those utterances, to better heal.

“Some will see this as an attempt to justify or excuse comments that are simply inexcusable. I can assure you it is not. I suppose the politically safe thing would be to move on from this episode and just hope that it fades into the woodwork.”

Obama declined to speculate on whether the controversy surrounding the Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s sermons may damage him politically, but said his campaign does best when it doesn’t follow the “textbook.” An openly humane Obama has been revealed. He would rather commit political suicide than going against his faith.

In an interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper, he said “If I was just running the textbook campaign — doing the conventional thing — I probably wasn’t going to win because Sen. [Hillary] Clinton was going to be much more capable of doing that than I would be,” he said.

His unwillingness to become “conventional” in his speech expresses a desire to bridge the gap between politics and the human factor.

Unfortunately, some prople have gone as far as likening this human factor to dictator friendliness. Peter Wehner of NRO says “If Obama isn’t willing to voice his concerns and objections with Wright and stand up for his country as it is being slandered by his pastor, what can we expect from Obama when he is asked to stand up against some of the world’s worst dictators?”

Peter Wehner’s is an example of the biggest problem in oral communication “distortion”. Obama did voice his concerns using very strong words to reprimand, disagree and sever political ties with Rev. Wright. But the question is, did Mr. Wehner listen to the whole speech?

Joe Klein from Time magazine, expresses a different point of view: “The rhetorical magic of the speech—what made it extraordinary—was that it was, at once, both unequivocal and healing. There were no weasel words, no Bushian platitudes or Clintonian verb-parsing. Obama was unequivocal in his candor about black anger and white resentment—sentiments that few mainstream politicians acknowledge (although demagogues of both races have consistently exploited them). And he was unequivocal in his refusal to disown Wright. Cynics and political opponents quickly noted that Obama used a forest of verbiage to camouflage a correction—the fact that he was aware of Wright’s views, that he had heard such sermons from the pulpit, after first denying that he had. And that may have been politics as usual. But the speech wasn’t.”

Victor Davis Hanson classicist and historian at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, in his article “Hope & Change Amid Dispair” shares his views on how tired the divisive race and gender identity in politics are becoming. Saying that a multiracial America in a strife-filled world works. So why copy the tribal separatism and divisions of the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda or most of the Middle East?

“Because the United States is so huge, free, wealthy and dynamic, we can cause enormous problems overnight. But by the same token, we can curb these excesses quickly. The solution to so many of the hopeless headlines is entirely in our hands.”

“I can no more disown him than I can disown the black community. I can no more disown him than I can my white grandmother …”

The Illinois senator told CNN’s Anderson Cooper in an exclusive interview that “In some ways, this controversy has actually shaken me up a little bit and gotten me back into remembering that the odds of me getting elected have always been lower than some of the other conventional candidates” .

Obama a product of America, seeks to bridge its divide, but no matter how delicately he treads, the sound of controverse resounds far and wide. The controversial drum has been let loose.

Obama running for the White House  The senator of Illinois is currently running for the White House but first of all he has to win the Primaries
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