A friend passed along your recent "WHAT about THIS" column ["Society's Superficial Skin," March 26], and, personally, I wish the entire nation could have read it.
I heard all three TV self-defenses of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, and while I wound up preferring the soft tones of the Moyers interview, the self-dramatized style of the presentation to the NAACP didn't blur its sharp intelligence and scholarship for me.
Though I lamented the style he chose to present them in, I understood the truth of the charges he repeated to the Press Association, and the anger he must have felt at needing to defend his attitudes (even over-personalized ones), to people who are supposed to be educated interpreters of the realities of our history.
Even the seemingly un-provable charge about HIV being brought in by government (read CIA?) to eliminate "people of color" is substantiated by the purposeful infecting of black prisoners with syphilis without their knowledge or consent 50-60 years ago, and the "experimental" introduction by the CIA of LSD into the country in the '50s. I would think that if they targeted any group with HIV it would probably have been gay people, more than blacks, but that's a speculative possibility either way, based on the above history.
The political myth of a perfect America (or a perfect anywhere) has been shot through with far too many holes for even the most ignorant of us who can at least read or understand what Abu Ghraib illustrated about it, must now realize how far from truth that juvenile portraiture has often gone.
And considering that Wright seems to have done Sen. Obama very little harm in North Carolina and Indiana, maybe
Americans have grown up morally enough to know their country, however high its ideals and valuable its Constitution, has so often lost its way in practice that to require a lack of criticism as a ticket to citizenship is nothing but political bull peddled by people who believe we're all too stupid to catch the stink.
To use Wright's recent words as Sen. John McCain and Sen. Hillary Clinton have against Barack and Michelle Obama - descendants of people whipped and purposely dehumanized by the nation's failures - is completely contemptible in my view.
So praise for, and respect for, good work
Jackson Park, North Seattle[[In-content Ad]]