- The Washington Times - Thursday, February 19, 2009

Wright redux?

“The new president has just made a personnel decision that reopens the entire issue (of the Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright and Trinity United Church of Christ). Earlier this month, he appointed the Reverend Dr. Otis Moss Jr. to serve on the new President’s Advisory Council established as part of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. … Not noted, however, are Moss’s many ties to Trinity and its troublesome former pastor. …

“Otis Moss Jr. and Wright shared a mentor in Samuel DeWitt Proctor, who helped give rise to black liberation theology. In fact, it was the radical Samuel DeWitt Proctor Conference that sponsored Wright’s now-infamous National Press Club appearance in late April 2008 - which led to Obama’s break with Trinity and Wright. Less noted was the fact that the symposium’s guest preacher that day was Reverend Otis Moss Jr. Moss has publicly defended Wright and compared his preaching to that of Amos, Micah, Malachi and John the Baptist. …

“A long drive? ‘You can travel from New York to California and listen carefully to radio or media and never get outside of the beam of hate.’ Not even classic films are safe: In a tag-team sermon with his son, Moss assumed the persona of a 21st-century Moses, then proceeded to declare the Jewish prophet a man of ‘Afrocentric heritage’ - despite “Eurocentric Hollywood movie distortions of [his] Africanness.’ … Moss also seems to enjoy sowing racial discord. At the ‘State of the Black Union’ conference in Jamestown, he accused President Bush of ‘pimping New Orleans.’ ”

- Meghan Clyne, writing on “Remember Rev. Wright?” in the Feb. 23 issue of the Weekly Standard

Lutherans and Palestinians

“[Forty-four] U.S. and Canadian Lutheran bishops, with spouses and staff, totaling about 90 people, have just completed a ‘peace’ tour of the West Bank. … Ostensibly the visit was to examine Lutheran ministries among the Palestinians, although needless to say the number of Lutheran Palestinians is minuscule. If merely seeking ministry with overseas Lutherans, these globetrotting bishops could have visited much larger and more impoverished Lutheran communities in Tanzania, Namibia, or many other places in Africa.

“But visiting poor African Lutherans would not have facilitated media attention and opportunities to denounce Israel. Hence, the North American Lutheran delegation, which included half of all the U.S. bishops of the 4.7 million Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, eagerly buzzed from one Palestinian photo op to the next, earnestly ‘praying’ next to Israel’s security wall and decrying Israel’s supposed misdeeds.

“Hosting the visiting bishops was the Palestinian Lutheran Bishop Munib Younan, who routinely mouths pro-Palestinian themes that fault Israel’s ‘occupation’ for all misfortunes among Palestinians, without examining troubling Palestinian pathologies.

“From the perspective of Lutheran bishops, what does all this envisioned peace and justice look like in the Middle East? Based on the Lutheran bishops’ daily blog entries, it seems to mean endless commiseration with Palestinian complaints about Israel, without any open curiosity about Israel’s view.”

- Mark D. Tooley in “Salvation and Palestinian Propaganda,” posted Jan. 15 on frontpagemag.com


“[Saturday was] the 20th anniversary of the Ayatollah’s fatwa against Salman Rushdie over ‘The Satanic Verses.’ Two decades on, who needs the mullahs? These days western nations are happy to fatwa their own. It’s now a familiar pattern.

If you threaten violence, the authorities cave in, and do the mob’s bidding in the interests of ‘public order’ - as they did in Toronto [on Feb. 11], when thugs attacked a Jewish center: ‘The police demanded that the center itself close down - punishing the innocent and achieving the goal of the mob.’ … If young Muslim girls are being kidnapped and forced into marriage with their first cousins, the British Home Office minister will suggest that these matters are best handled discreetly and informally. …

“But, if you don’t threaten violence, if you don’t issue death threats, if you don’t kill anyone, if you just make a movie or write a book or try to give a speech, the state will prosecute you, ban you or (in the case of Ayaan Hirsi Ali) force you to flee your own country.”

- Mark Steyn, writing on “The Free World Fatwas Itself” on Feb. 13 at the National Review blog The Corner

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