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Hillary doesn’t take the bait

Huffingtonpost has a clip of Hillary’s interview with Bill O’Reilly that is to be aired tonight and tomorrow night on The O’Reilly Factor. She says people should make up their own minds about Rev. Wright after BillO relentlessly goads her about him.

To put her comments in context, let’s look at what she said in her last debate appearance with George Stephanoplous and Charles Gibson:

“One’s choice of church and pastor is rooted in what one believes is what you’re seeking in church and what kind of, you know, fellowship you find in church,” Clinton told moderators Charles Gibson and George Stephanopoulos.

“But I have to say,” she continued, “for Pastor Wright to have given his first sermon after 9/11 and to have blamed the United States for the attack, which happened in my city of New York, would have been just intolerable for me. And, therefore, I would have not been able to stay in the church.”

It doesn’t take a lot of acrobatic artistry to interpret her meaning. She understands full well that our choice of religion and church are rooted in our individual cultural backgrounds and traditions. But what she found offensive and outrageous about Rev. Wright was his statement that America was somehow responsible for 9/11. The truth is, some zealous fundamentalist Islamacists took it upon themselves to bring America to its knees by destroying certain iconic American targets. They are PO’d over corruption of the Saudi family and its enablers. No one in those towers, planes, Pentagon or NYC rescue units deserved to pay for Osama bin Laden’s megalomania. But Rev. Wright pinned the blame squarely on America as if the dead had it coming to them. That was the outrageous offensive remark. Religion has little if anything to do with it.

Now, Rev. Wright may have been a good friend, a loving pastor, a faithful Christian, but he has a lot of power in church to bring people to a heightened emotional plane. I’m guessing that in the moments that he said these incredibly stupid and offensive remarks, he was feeling that rush of power and instead of exercising self-control, he gave into it. What is the proper response of a parishioner? I think it depends on whether you are also swept up in the moment. If you are, you approve the sentiment and say nothing. If you aren’t, it’s your responsibility to discuss it with your friend and get him to see reason. If he doesn’t, you have to walk away.

Well, we know what Obama did.

Oh, and Guillermo del Toro is going to direct The Hobbitt and Ian McKellen will reprise his role as Gandalf.

51 Responses

  1. The OFB will be in full panties-twisted mode

    “ZOMG – Hillary keeps bringing up Wright!.”

  2. Let’s just say that condemning him for the stupid remarks but not the church itself shows she knows her audience.

  3. Oh, rd. Silly, naive, rd. You’re forgetting the Hillary rules. She’s wrong no matter what she does. Every utterance is proof that she will say and do anything to win.

    The blogger boiz have descended so far into Warner Brother’s cartoon territory that they almost make the MSM look credible (except for KO, who is from the same pod).

  4. [No, I don’t think you’re silly or naive.]

  5. Riverdaughter,

    Congratulations on making Vanity Fair! I just read the article. How exciting. Now I’m going to watch the clip.

  6. I am with you Bostonboomer –

    I love Tom Watson too – was glad to see him get well-deserved praise.

  7. Panties in twist? Boxer shorts in a vise? Didn’t Obama already say the Reverend’s remarks were outrageous and offensive? Hillary is just agreeing with him, isn’t she?

  8. I understand exactly what Hillary is saying, because she’s a Methodist and in the Methodist church a preacher wouldn’t get away with that kind of talk. The SPRC committee would make a call to the District Superintendent and ask for another minister—preferably before the conference year is out. UNLESS, of course, a majority in the church agree with what he’s saying, and judging from the support that Rev. Wright is getting from everyone other than a politician running for office, I think that might be the case.

  9. Re Hillary – clever rmove to go on BO – thought i wont watch that show – she will cut into his Republican crossover votes.

  10. lucinda: it would be inappropriate of her to compare her Methodist tradition with his Trinity tradition. It’s like claiming religious superiority. And she was wise enough to not go there. She kept her focus on his anti-American sou ding statements. Good move.

  11. Riverdaughter – I am not buying it. The pastor of my catholic church raped a 4th grader. But we haven’t switched churches.

    Now all of a sudden Clintonites are all Ashcroft patriots, using 9/11 imagery against Barack and pulling emotional strings ala Karl Rove.

    Plus, when’s the last time Hil’s been to church?

    John Kerry showed some cujones (for once) on MSNBC – we are tired of hearing about Wright. Aren’t Clintonites tired of Bosnia? Oh wait, haven’t heard that one for awhile.


    But hopefully we can all agree how deplorable Buchanan has been during this whole crisis:


  12. Gee, I hope the pastor has been removed. He raped fourth grader? I think I’d change churches.

  13. Oh, and I’m not tired of hearing about Wright yet either. I think he’s kind of fascinating.

  14. Should I leave the Catholic Church?

  15. Can we please hear more about Bosnia?

  16. You know what I hear when I hear an Obama fan trying (and usually failing) to throw Bosnia?

    I think of all the lies Obama has told that we haven’t even gotten to yet.Selma? JFK and his dad? Etc.

    There’s so MUCH for the general election. Go ahead: bring up Bosnia some more. We all know Obama has nothing but Hillary-hate fuelling his weak campaign.

    Wright is a big story because Wright is about values. What ARE Obama’s values?

    You have to be pretty far out on the left to say, “values? who cares about that?”

  17. Slightly off-topic, see what I found!!

    That’s Hysterical: Attacks on a “hysterical” Hillary Clinton have a long literary pedigree.

    The May 7, 2008, cover of the New Republic
    And yet the media keep trying to paint her as a hysteric. Here’s the cover of this fortnight’s New Republic. Category mistake? From all those brilliant young Harvard guys at the New Republic?

    Clearly, something else is afoot.

    By playing the “hysteric” card, Clinton’s attackers are following a very old script—a script that taints women with madness every time they, you know, say anything at all that might distinguish them from a doormat. The word hysterical does not mean any old homicidal lunacy. It means—and has meant since the birth of Western medicine—symptoms caused by the uterus (in Greek, hystera): a disease, as Hippocrates, the father of Western medicine, called it, of women:

    When the uterus has reached the liver and the hypochondrium and causes suffocation, the whites of the eyes roll up, the woman becomes cold, and even sometimes livid. She grinds her teeth; saliva drips from her mouth, and she appears to be having an epileptic fit.

  18. The Left,

    My folks left the Catholic Church because the Pope didn’t take a strong stand against the Viet Nam war. This wasn’t a light decision for them, up to that point we NEVER, ever missed Mass.

    The might not have left if we had stayed in California — we lived in a County that was famous for it’s anti-war activity. But here in Kansas the Priests glorified the war during Mass. And my parents hated hearing pro-war messages in Church.

    So people leave their Church when they disagree with the message. I know how hard it is too.

  19. More…

    Ancient doctors speculated that uteri drove women crazy because the thirsty organs didn’t get watered enough by having sex with men. Although ordinary anatomy eventually dispensed with that theory, the notion that there was some medical basis for female hysteria just would not stay dead. Famed scholar and literary critic Elaine Showalter wrote in her book Hystories that “for over a century the political context of hysteria has been feminism. Hysteria became a hot topic in medical circles in the 1880s and 1890s when feminism, the New Woman, and a crisis in gender were also hot topics. … [D]octors viewed hysterical women as closet feminists who had to be reprogrammed into traditional roles.”

  20. I heard an interview with Bill O’R this morning on my way to work and he was very clear that he intended to ask her about Wright.
    She gets asked questions and if she avoids them she is wrong and if she answers them she is wrong.
    Is it possible to look at her thru mature eyes ?
    I didn’t think so.

  21. The Left,

    I thought the discussion was about Obama leaving a church with a pastor who spewed hate from the pulpit, not leaving a denomination. But sure, I left the Catholic Church because I didn’t agree with their treatment of women.

    I don’t particularly have an opinion about what you should do. But if there is a priest in the parish raping elementary school girls, then something should definitely be done about it. I’m oppposed to the abuse of children in any form.

  22. Katiebird,

    It looks like that article you posted on “hysteria” is by Linda Hirshman, the woman who was cut from TPM because she wanted to write about women voters instead of Obamalove.

  23. Sorry–ghost2 posted the article.

  24. I remember that episode, bostonboomer — it was one of the first signs that someone had kidnapped Josh.

  25. more off-topic:

    Goldberry, do you know that you are mentioned in this vanity fair article?


  26. I want to bask in your reflected glory, RD!

  27. How could anything about Goldberry/Riverdaughter be OT?

  28. Someone please correct my math…

    The Left = A Troll

    Three troll droppings x $3 = $9 to Sen. Clinton. Or I gotta make 3 more phonecalls on her behalf tonight.

    Day-um, these trolls are getting expensive.

  29. The Left: There’s a difference between the Catholic Church as a whole–one’s religion, faith–and an individual church and pastor.

  30. Ohio, no kidding — in time too. Since I’m slow to spot them.

  31. The Left: Um, I think most people WOULD leave their church if their pastor “raped a 4th grader.” In the name of all that is holy, why WOULD you stay? By the way, it’s cOjones, not cUjones. If you’re going to sling Kerry’s cojones at us, learn to spell it right. Sorry for the visual, Conflucians. 🙂

  32. Well, I’m a little quicker since the trolls are spending my money.

    Ah, well it’s a good cause.

    And anyone who would use the suffering of a child to fake a political point is a—I’ve tried several vile names, but there isn’t one vile enough.

  33. (nodding)

  34. That last post was in response to katiebird.

  35. BTW: I want to add that laypersons can and do incredible work to reform their local Catholic churches, not only to express their conscience and stand with the victims but also to restore their Church.

    I sought out my local church, as a Catholic, because the priest there took reform to heart and has been a staunch ally of victims.

  36. Sorry, but John Kerry lost his cojones in 2004.

  37. @lyn5: He magically also lost some of his wrinkles that year.

  38. Davidson, you know how to scare a girl!

  39. @lyn5: Poor bastard. You can tell by that sly grin of his that he thought he looked like hot stuff, too. Check out the pink lips (gloss perhaps?).

    Hey, at least, he had gravitas.

  40. Davidson, thanks for your remarks on the Catholic church. I think most long time, regular attenders of any congregation have the abillity to influence the direction and tone of the church messaging and mission. It makes me sad that freaky pulpit-delivered messaging, ultra-conservative-state-mandated-morality and law breaking is the big news. For some people, it is all they know of Christians.

    I’ve seen lots of similar comments about the pastor with the small c catholic church all over in news sites for a while now.

  41. @Davidson: I didn’t realize Kerry was in Woody Allen’s movie, “Sleeper.”

  42. Left: Here’s a key distinction – no one priest, bishop, cardinal or even a pope is the Catholic Church. The represent it, even lead it, but they don’t own it.

    Rev. Wright is Trinity UCC. He made that church what it is today. It isn’t one parish of a much larger entity, it is the totality.

    Obama spent 20 years at that church because of Rev. Wright. Now he claims he didn’t know the man.

  43. Oh no, Davidson, you found that picture! LOL. I remember that day.. WTF was he thinking?

  44. Hillary was terrific on O’Reilly. I swear, she had him smiling at her. How could anyone actually hate this woman?

  45. So, Sen. Clinton on Faux…She looked like she was having a good time. And she got the best of Bill O’Reilly several times by using (gasp!) facts.

    She will say anything to win!

    I think O’Reilly was enjoying himself as well, though you’d have to threaten to light his wallet on fire to get him to admit it.

    Just remember: the Media is not our friend. Their first loyalty is to themselves. Not the truth. Not the country. Not the future.

    The fab GF and I agreed that if she is anywhere within 500 miles of us, we will drive to see her. We’re in Western WA so if anyone wants in on a carpool—there’s chance she’ll be in Oregon again.

  46. I haven’t watched Billo’s interview with Hillary because that would, you know, involve watching Billo. But from the partial transcript at Huffpo, I don’t see how her answers to Billo’s questions were at all problematic.

    It’s clear that when Hillary said at the debate that she’d have left “that church” if her pastor had said things similar to what Wright said, she was talking about the particular congregation, not the denomination. And her answers to Billo made that distinction as well.

    As for whether one should leave the Catholic church — and not just one’s particular parish — over the child abuse scandal, I think that it’s an individual decision based on how one views the Church’s efforts to deal with the situation. i certainly wouldn’t attend a Mass performed by a child rapist. And if I was dissatisfied with the way the Church hierarchy dealt with the scandal, I might not find myself another parish.

    Hard for me to say, since I stopped being an observant Catholic a long time ago over other matters — birth control, reproductive freedom, the general treatment of women. I still find the Mass beautiful, and I still think of myself as a Catholic, but I’m sure the Pope would not. .

  47. There is a Catholic Church here in my area that I love. The priest is wonderful because he speaks for all of us. He refused to send the weekly portion of the offering to the diocese until they stopped sending checks to a priest accused and convicted of child rape. He welcomes all and is wonderful with the homosexual community. As a result the church has attracted so many new parishioners there is little seating left. He is a wonderful speaker and is the kind of priest (for all of us here who are or once were) who is inclusive. This is what we are all striving for in our daily walk through life.

  48. As the oldest, I was the only one of the kids who was really totally raised in the Catholic Church, I was 17 when my parents broke away from it. And I miss the ceremony. I wish I could find a High Church that matched my impossible religious beliefs.

  49. I should say, religious/social/moral beliefs.

  50. katiebird: Exactly.

  51. I lied – I left the church a few years back because I’m an agnostic – I believe in spirituality, thought – but the point is I didn’t leave because of an insane pastor – my parents sill go to the church as well.

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