I was reading the BBC’s coverage of the final debate before next week’s primary in Pennsylvania between US Democratic presidential hopefuls Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. Nestling away towards the bottom of this item is the curious comment that Obama (The BBC’s preferred candidate, natch) has faced calls to distance himself from Jeremiah Wright, the pastor of his church, after clips of Mr Wright’s “fiery sermons” were shown on the internet.

Mmm..”fiery sermons” seems a tad vague to me. Considering that the Rev Wright has claimed that “Racism is how this country was founded and how this country is still run!…” and “In the 21st century, white America got a wake-up call after 9/11/01. White America and the western world came to realize that people of color had not gone away, faded into the woodwork or just ‘disappeared’ as the Great White West kept on its merry way of ignoring black concerns.” and “We bombed Hiroshima, we bombed Nagasaki, and we nuked far more than the thousands in New York and the Pentagon, and we never batted an eye.” Look, Wright is a vicious anti-Semitic race-hustler who hates the values of the United States and who openly says so. To suggest that this venom is merely “fiery sermons” is to downplay just how poisonous Wright is and just how awkward this is proving for Obama – the man who can no more disown the Rev Wright than his white grandmother. I doubt that the BBC has ANY influence over the US electorate but even so, these small euphemistic evasions must be highlighted to reveal that there are prejudices to be found outside Rev Wright’s congregation.

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