Friday, January 11, 2008

Fear and loathing...smearing Obama

The bottom feeders are getting busy. My wife got this group email today from a casual acquaintance who apparently thought we were ready to be let into her inner circle of email contacts. The email has obviously been around awhile; it's origins are obscure (democrats and republicans both have been passsing it around); its purposes, however, are anything but obscure. Hold your nose and read the following, reprinted almost in its entirety...

Subject: Obama's church

Obama mentioned his church during his appearance with Oprah. It's the Trinity Church of Christ. I found this interesting. Obama's church:
Please read and go to this church's website and read what is written there. It is very alarming. Barack Obama is a member of this church and is running for President of the U.S. If you look at the first page of their website, you will learn that this congregation has a non-negotiable commitment to Africa. No where is AMERICA even mentioned. Notice too, what color you will need to be if you should want to join Obama's church... B-L-A-C-K!!! Doesn't look like his choice of religion has improved much over his (former?) Muslim upbringing. Strip away his nice looks, the big smile and smooth talk and what do you get? Certainly a racist, as plainly defined by the stated position of his church! And possibly a covert worshiper of the Muslim faith, even today. This guy desires to rule over America while his loyalty is totally vested in a Black Africa!
I cannot believe this has not been all over the TV and newspapers. This is why it is so important to pass this message along to all of our family & friends. To think that Obama has even the slightest chance in the run for the presidency, is really scary.
Click on the link below: This is the web page for the church Barack Obama belongs to:
If you do not ever forward anything else, please forward this to all your contacts...this is very scary to think of what lies ahead of us here in our own United States...better heed this and pray about it and share it. We checked this out on ''. It is factual. Check for yourself
Who is Barack Obama?
Probable U. S. presidential candidate, Barack Hussein Obama was born in Honolulu , Hawaii , to Barack Hussein Obama, Sr., a black MUSLIM from Nyangoma-Kogel, Kenya and Ann Dunham, a white ATHIEST from Wichita , Kansas . Obama's parents met at the University of Hawaii . When Obama was two years old, his parents divorced. His father returned to Kenya . His mother then married Lolo Soetoro, a RADICAL Muslim from Indonesia.? When Obama was 6 years old, the family relocated to Indonesia . Obama attended a MUSLIM school in Jakarta. He also spent two years in a Catholic school.
Obama takes great care to conceal the fact that he isa Muslim. He is quick to point out that, 'He was once a Muslim, but that he also attended Catholic school...
Since it is politically expedient to be a CHRISTIAN when seeking major public office in the United States, Barack Hussein Obama has joined the United Church of Christ in an attempt to downplay his Muslim background. ALSO, keep in mind that when he was sworn into office he DID NOT use the Holy Bible, but instead the Koran.
Let us all remain alert concerning Obama's expected presidential candidacy..
The Muslims have said they plan on destroying the US from the inside out, what better way to start than at the highest level - through the President of the United States, one of their own!!!!
Please forward to everyone you know. Would you want this man leading our country?...... NOT ME!!!

The reference is an especially slimy tactic. It says, "Check for yourself." So I did. If you actually go to ( a fact checking website) you will discover, not surprisingly, that at least two of the letter's key assertions are outright lies: first, Obama was not sworn in on the Koran, and second, he is not a Muslim. As for the rest of the letter, only says that there are "multiple truths and untruths" represented there. So much for fact checking.

Not content with unearthing these cancerous assertions, I decided to also visit the Trinity Unitied Church of Christ website and do some poking around for myself. While it's certainly true that the church is a "black" church with an African orientation, it is also decidedly not Muslim. It is in its own words "unapologetically Christian" and Christ-centered. The words "Christ" and "Jesus" appear everywhere you look. Nowhere in my reading did I find a single use of the word Muslim.
Lastly, I decided to email the church myself and see what they had to say for themselves. It's strange how little time we devote to going straight to the source as opposed to endlessly triangulating information and sources...keeping the wingnuts and the pundits busy and the public permanently distracted. I asked the folks at TUCC if they had racial criteria for membership in their congregation and whether or not their congregation was racially mixed. Here's the reply I received this evening from Trinity United Church of Christ:

Thank you for your interest in Trinity United Church of Christ and for your consideration of our member, Sen. Barack Obama, in the Democratic primary election. Due to the high volume of emails and inquiries, we are unable to respond to each one personally. We were overwhelmed with "hits" after Senator Obama's historic victory in the Iowa democratic caucus.

Barack Obama has been a member of Trinity United Church of Christ for nearly two decades. As a young community organizer, new to Chicago, Barack met with Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr., Trinity's Senior Pastor, seeking advice. He received good counsel about the complexities of life in Chicago and the challenges faced by residents in poor communities like South Chicago's Altgeld Gardens.
The United Church of Christ (, Trinity's denominational affiliation, is "a community of faith that seeks to respond to the Gospel of Jesus Christ in word and deed." It was founded in 1957 through the union of several different Christian traditions. Not only does Trinity not exclude anyone from membership or attendance based on race or ethnicity, but:
The majority of UCC members are white; the conference minister of the Illinois Conference of the UCC (Rev. Jane Fisler Hoffman) and her husband (both white) are members of Trinity (You can watch a video of Rev. Hoffman speaking at Trinity about her positive experiences there.); Trinity has been instrumental in working with and lending financial and staff support to the development of new UCC churches in Gary, IN (with the Indiana-Kentucky Conference of the UCC, Milwaukee, WI (with the Wisconsin Conference of the UCC), and Benton Harbor, MI (with the Michigan Conference of the UCC). There is no anti-American sentiment in the theology or the practice of Trinity United Church of Christ. To be sure, there is prophetic preaching against oppression, racism and other evils that would deny the American ideal. Trinity is "Unashamedly Black and Unapologetically Christian."
Trinity was founded in 1961 and had 87 families when Dr. Wright started his tenure in 1972. Currently, as Dr. Wright anticipates a 2008 retirement, there are more than 8,000 members, 70 ministries, and three Sunday worship services. You and your family can watch these services online at 7:30am, 11:00am and 6:00pm CST.
If you require additional information, please do not hesitate to contact Senator Obama's office:
Mr. Robert Gibbs
Phone: 312-282-3172
Yours in Christ!

Sound like a real racist, jihadist, anti-american bunch don't they?
Honestly, I wish Obama did not belong to this or any other church, Christian or otherwise, since I view the influence of religion in politics today to be detrimental to the search for sound public policy and the preservation of our core freedoms. My sense of Obama is that he is not slavish to the teachings of this church, and that he keeps his own counsel, and that he is not a secret operative for Al Quaida. I hope that is true of the other candidates as well.
You don't have to like Obama or vote for him, but you should call bullshit whenever you hear it. That's our civic duty.
This is bullshit.
p.s. - please pass this around if you like


Blogger adam jk gallardo said...

I'm surprised that the people who cobbled together that email didn't write CATHOLIC in all caps as they had every other term that they found offensive.

This is pretty classic rumor-mongering. It's lot's of hear-say and half-truths (not to mention outright lies) that can't stand up to even slight fact checking. Luckily for the authors of the email, most people can't be bothered to do any fact checking at all. Thanks for looking into this one, Kevin.

9:26 PM  
Blogger Erin said...

I am so frustrated that the majority of the population, who have never checked a fact in their lives, are the ones who keep deciding presidential elections. Thanks for debunking this rumor!

2:49 PM  

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