King had a dream, Obama has a drone, Rev. Wright says
BY STEFANO ESPOSITO Staff Reporter January 15, 2014 3:24PM
The Rev. Jeremiah Wright chats with Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis after an event Wednesday in West Pullman to commemorate the birthday of Martin Luther King Jr. | Stefano Esposito~Sun-Times
Updated: February 17, 2014 8:38AM
If the Rev. Jeremiah Wright believes — as he’s claimed in the past — that he and President Barack Obama will be buddies again when he’s out of office, the firebrand preacher didn’t do himself any favors Wednesday.
Speaking at a breakfast co-hosted by the Chicago Teachers Union to commemorate Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday, Wright said that while the civil rights leader proclaimed “I have a dream,” Obama says, “I have a drone.”
Wright, Obama’s former pastor, called for King’s “revolution of values” and a rejection of the “three-headed demon” of “racism, militarism and capitalism” — the foundations of Western society, he said.
“Every Tuesday morning, there’s a kill list that the president decides who they’re going to kill this week,” Wright said.
Wright, pastor emeritus at Trinity United Church of Christ on the South Side, drew national attention during the 2008 presidential race for parts of his sermons, including one in which he said, “God damn America.” Obama later distanced himself from Wright.
Wright — with CTU President Karen Lewis and a host of mainly African-American pastors in attendance — continued in that vein Wednesday, blasting corporate media for reducing King’s words to palatable sound bites. Wright provided plenty of his own sound bites, as he took aim at some of Illinois’ most revered citizens, including America’s 16th president.
“Abraham Lincoln liked to tell darkie jokes,” Wright said. “He liked to hear darkie jokes and he used the N-word incessantly.”
Wright, his words spiced with sarcasm, questioned how U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan landed his job — after he “ruined the school system” in Chicago as CEO of schools.
“A good hook shot playing basketball with . . . Barack Hussein Obama,” Wright said to chuckles.
After the speech, Wright left without answering reporters’ questions — including those from a Fox national news crew chasing him down a hallway.
Lewis defended Wright’s remarks, including the Obama references, saying the pastor’s words need to be seen in a broad context.
“The issue is, how do we put those things in context so we can get to the point where we can have a world that’s healed and perfected, where we don’t have war?” Lewis said.