Pandering presidential candidate Barack Obama launched his campaign on a platform of hope. Time and time again, the senator harped on expectant optimism, pleading with voters not to lose faith in America’s future and, most of all, themselves. In turn, Obama hoped people would vote him into the White House.
Too bad Obama’s anti-gay gospel gaffe turned his ambition into desperation.
Things haven’t been looking good for Barack’s black ratings. CNN took a poll earlier this month showing that the majority of black voters prefer Hillary Clinton over Barack, a man many think could be our first black president.
According to the CNN poll, Clinton leads Obama among black registered Democrats, 57 percent to 33 percent. Black women are backing Clinton to the tune of 68 percent compared with 25 percent for Obama. Black men favor Obama 46 percent to 42 percent for Clinton. The poll has a margin of error of plus-or-minus 6.5 percent.
While that’s a fairly big margin, Obama and his staff knew they had to hit the ground running and run up their numbers. Their next move, however, may demolish them.
In a bid to win over black Christians, the Obama camp decided to launch a three-day gospel tour: “Embrace the Change”. The plot had all the ingredients necessary to woo the swinging black, church-going vote: religion, passion, energy and entertainment. Obama hoped to use Christianity as a platform for his campaign’s inclusive vibe. Unfortunately, the tour derailed when news broke that Obama’s camp had booked two anti-gay acts: Donnie McClurkin and Mary Mary. McClurkin, it’s worth mentioning, claims he overcame his homosexuality, a homosexuality born of molestation. Others, he says, can crush their queer desires. Needless to say, the homos certainly weren’t feeling it and Obama found himself in the midst of a firestorm. Suddenly Malibu looked good.
Obama hoped to quell the raging gay fury with a stale, anti-climactic statement. Then, in an effort to clear his tarnished name, self-professed “ex-gay” Reverend McClurkin told the Chicago Tribune he’s not a homophobe. No doubt Obama hoped that would quiet things down. He was wrong. And it soon became clear that Barack would have to make a decision. Too bad he made the wrong one.
Late in the news day yesterday, after the massively powerful, mainstream Human Rights Campaign wagged their finger, Obama announced a gay minister would open the “Embrace The Change” tour. That would shut the homos up. Or so Obama hoped. To us, his gay compromise simply proved the “hopeful” candidate hopeless.
Many gay people have been skeptical of Obama since day one. Some saw his religious ties as a threat. Though wary, we wanted to believe Obama’s sincerity and vision. His presence at HRC’s gay forum seemed to be an attempt at engaging gay voters, even if he did seem a bit squirmy and his politics aren’t as groundbreaking as his campaign. This Embrace the Change tour and the senator’s poor judgment therein prove Barack Obama’s just like so many presidential candidate: a vote-hungry demagogue. He’s hardly the demigod people would like to believe.
Like most of us, Obama knows that two wrongs don’t make a right. The Democrat doesn’t seem to realize that a right and a wrong don’t make a right. They don’t even balance one another out. No, Obama’s indecision and ill-conceived reaction only make a bigger wrong. Barack Obama, a man countless children and adults admire, should have stood up and done what’s right. He should have said, “Homophobia and those who propagate homophobia have no place in my campaign.” He did not.
Instead, Obama has chosen the insolent and impotent route. Obama underestimated the power and penetration of anti-gay attitudes. He foolishly thought that tacking on a gay minister would make everything better. This man, this black senator, simply doesn’t understand gay struggles, motivations and hopes. This ambitious voter grab simply doesn’t look hopeful. It looks spineless and, worst of all, desperate. And that’s not a good look for a president.