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Dear MSNBC – You’re Employing a Racist

October 26, 2011

Apparently the management of  MSNBC, the cable news network supposedly at odds with FOX, does not know what a racist is. I come to this conclusion based primarily on their continuing to employee one Patrick J. Buchanan as an analyst.

Allow me to help you MSNBC. Patrick Buchanan is a racist. In fact, he is so racist he could probably run for Grand Wizard. If you don’t want to believe me, a cursory review of his latest work of fiction “Suicide Of A Superpower,”should literally “pull the cover off ” for you. If the titles of some of the chapters don’t give you pause, just review some of these choice musings spotlighted on TPM’s review “Twelve Pretty Racist Or Just Crazy Quotes From Pat Buchanan’s New Book”.

If you aren’t readers, here’s a gem that should stop anyone in their track from the chapter: Equality and Freedom:

“Not until the 1960s did courts begin to use the Fourteenth Amendment to impose a concept of equality that the authors of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, The Federalist Papers, and the Gettysburg Address never believed in. Before the 1960s, equality meant every citizen enjoyed the same constitutional rights and the equal protection of existing laws. Nothing in the Constitution or federal law mandated social, racial, or gender equality.”

Soak it in folks. That’s racism.

Apparently MSNBC management, forgot the reprehensible way Pat Buchanan addressed the race issue during the 2008 Presidential race, when Barack Obama made one of the most eloquent appeals to dialogue on the issue that we have heard.  I was so outraged by Buchanan’s reply to then Senator Obama’s call to conscience that I penned one of my posts especially for his benefit.  I think a reprise of that post is due, so here it is:

Dear Mr. Buchanan,

For a moment let me discuss the Black church experience in America.

It was our experience to be excluded from the American church. Ministers and lay leaders of the white Christian churches flatly refused to include us in their worshipful community.  It was our experience to be given an uneven gospel, a gospel that spoke half truths, a gospel that condone – no – promoted cattle slavery, a gospel that demanded fealty without reason and piety without the end being reward (since there remained a question of whether or not we had souls). It was our experience to be denied the truth that Jesus was of African descent and that many of the principals that defined his “Good News” were indelibly African; and it is this experience that taught us, it was this experience that gave root to the African-American preachers prophetic voice, his liberation, his theology.

This is the experience that caused James Baldwin to pen the words

“To be an Afro-American, or an American black, is to be in the situation, intolerably exaggerated, of all those who have ever found themselves part of a civilization which they could in no wise honorably defend – which they were compelled, indeed, endlessly to attack and condemn – and who yet spoke out of the most passionate love, hoping to make the kingdom new, to make it honorable and worthy of life.”

and it is this divine and prophetic voice that was voiced by Black America’s great theologian Howard Thurman, former Dean of the noted and historic Howard University Rankin Chapel, who explained the soul of the American Blacks Christian mission

“The disinherited man has a sense of gross injury. He finds it well-nigh impossible to forgive, because his injury is often gratuitous. It is not for something that he has done, an action resulting from a deliberate violation of another. He is penalized for what he is in the eyes and the standards of another. Somehow he must free himself of the will to retaliation that keeps alive his hatred.”

This, in essence is what the mission of the Black clergy and Black church has always been. To bridge the space between the sense of injury that is inherent in the African-American’s history and the desire to take an ultimately unrewarding vengeance.  It is to call men to

“let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream! – Amos 5:24”

It is this truth that Sen. Obama has plied himself to, and Pat Buchanan has refused.

Today, I read the further spewing of Buchanan’s opinion of Rev. Wright and Sen. Obama, in his column “A Brief for Whitey”.  A treatise which served to abdicate white American culpability for any of the problems Sen. Obama discussed in his monumentally intelligent speech. Now, I never quote Buchanan, but I found this bit of his drivel so breathtaking I must share it, if only to express the level of ignorance many of the conservative media harbor.

“Barack says we need to have a conversation about race in America.

Fair enough. But this time, it has to be a two-way conversation. White America needs to be heard from, not just lectured to.

This time, the Silent Majority needs to have its convictions, grievances and demands heard. And among them are these:

First, America has been the best country on earth for black folks. It was here that 600,000 black people, brought from Africa in slave ships, grew into a community of 40 million, were introduced to Christian salvation, and reached the greatest levels of freedom and prosperity blacks have ever known.”

Stunningly stupid, I know.  In a nutshell, it appears Buchanan thinks we should be praising the slave traders for delivering us like cattle to the auction blocks of Boston and Charleston – as if those slave traders had some good intention. Alas, this statement in more ways than one explains why Buchanan could not like most of us identify with Sen. Obama, or like many of us with Rev. Wright.  Buchanan like many Christians know only a partial gospel, and a incomplete Christian mission.

The unfortunate truth about Buchanan’s form of Christianity, is that it is without the balance of justice.

He wholly attributes the American church (white)  as the bastion of Christian salvation, a love centered, forgiving institution where redemption is free, but without the justice that its Bible requires. It is justice that Wright railed against the machine for, and not the justice that most Christians believe in.  Not the damning of a soul to a fire hell, not the shallow vengeance of a God to terrible to be loving. No, the justice that God (at least the true Christ) would see is the equity of all achieved, and by that equity the law of God fulfilled

“to love your neighbor as yourself”

That is the Black church’s message, that was what Rev. Wright wanted to convey – that is what Obama tried to articulate in his speech this week – that is what the ignorant racism of Pat Buchanan can’t see.

Maybe if he attended a couple of services at Trinity he’d see the LIGHT!

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