I’ve been as harsh on Obama’s relation to Jeremiah Wright as anyone. But I’ll be damned if I didn’t literally tear up during the speech he just gave (and which, incidentally, he wrote himself). His expression of patriotic love for the only country in the world where his story is possible, his praise of how far we’ve come on the issue of race, his faith that we can and will come further — it was pitch-perfect.
Yes, the association with Wright still bothers me, and in a perfect world it would be disqualifying. But I think he just put it behind him, and maybe even turned it into a news cycle victory.
Barack Obama is the most talented public speaker we’ve seen in a long, long time. He should never be underestimated. And frankly, it kind of scares me. Almost every time he veers toward policy prescriptions, I cringe. His rhetorical talent threatens to make him all too effective at passing bad laws.
UPDATE: On the other hand, Mark Hemingway may have a point that the speech is only effective taken as a whole:
Race isn’t easy to address – it required Obama to be extremely nuanced and offer up very complex arguments. Very few people are actually going to watch or read this speech all the way through. I’m not sure there’s any ten second takeaways from the speech that will be replayed on cable news that will pacify voters or give a sense of what the speech was really about.
I think I’ll have to give it time and watch the coverage to issue a final verdict.
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That’s right, the Grinch (Joe Biden) is coming for your pocketbooks this Christmas season with record inflation. Just to recap, here is a list of items that have gone up during his reign.
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