Monday, April 21, 2008

Obama, the Terrorist, and the Klan

Steve Chapman wrote a good piece in today's Chicago Tribune about Barak Obama's relationship to an unrepentant terrorist. Here, he gets to the main issues of Obama's moral equivalence and the double standard of his supporters in the media:

"Would Obama be friendly with someone who actually bombed abortion clinics and defends that conduct? Not likely. But he is friendly with William Ayers, a leader of the radical Weather Underground, which in the 1970s carried out numerous bombings, including one inside the U.S. Capitol".

The point lost on Senator Obama is that Mr. Ayers still defends his acts of 40 years ago.

Mr. Chapman continues:

"It's hard to imagine he would be so indulgent if we learned that John McCain had a long association with a former Klansman who used to terrorize African-Americans. Obama's conduct exposes a moral blind spot about these onetime terrorists, who get a pass because they a) fall on the left end of the spectrum and b) haven't planted any bombs lately".

Good points and hard to argue with - but I will. I'm not arguing the conclusions. I am arguing against the example.

I've seen variations of the "What if McCain befriended Klan'ers" example elsewhere and for other issues. The Reverend Wright debacle, for instance. My question is why does the far right always get lumped together with the KKK or Nazi's? As one travels to the left you really do run into real communists. You also ran into groups like The Weatherman, the SLA, Black Panthers...You can still find ELF, FALN, FARC, Shining Path ...When one travels right do we find actual Nazi's and the Ku Klux Klan? Do we find other groups who share their racial world view? Is it even accurate to call these groups "far right"?

The implication in using the Nazis and Ku Klux Klan as examples is that racism comes from the far right. That's why liberals use those examples. It is my observation that it is conservatives who now believe in a color-blind society and individual liberty, while liberals believe in multiculturalism, diversity (with no clear definition of either) and group rights. Mr. Chapman should not concede these points.


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