It's only the primaries and Barack is peeling off the layers and ridding himself of old pals and community ties. He's saying bye-bye to Trinity - if he ever really belonged.
Senator Barack Obama is ending his membership at Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, a congregation he has belonged to for about two decades and one that had become a lightning rod in his Democratic presidential bid.
Mr. Obama informed his campaign advisers of his decision today, according to people familiar with the situation, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak for the candidate. Mr. Obama is scheduled to explain his decision tonight in South Dakota.
For Mr. Obama, this is the latest effort to distance himself from a church that had repeatedly drawn negative attention to his candidacy. And, in turn, Mr. Obama drew negative attention to the church on Chicago’s South Side, where he was married and his two daughters were baptized.
Last month, Mr. Obama forcefully broke with his longtime pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr., after a series of incendiary remarks he made about the United States government. This week, Mr. Obama found himself responding once again to a sermon delivered from the pulpit of Trinity, when a Catholic priest and a longtime friend of Mr. Obama was captured on video last Sunday mocking Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton.
Honestly, I never really bought that Barack was a long and faithful member of Trinity. You can have your name on the roster and not be involved. I'm on numerous internet lists with many folks from Chicago who are Trinitarians. I've asked at least three times who has seen Obama at services. The only response I got was that someone saw he and Michelle at altar call one Sunday. Was he on the usher board? The men's auxiliary? Youth ministry? Couple's ministry? Was he a member or did he just belong?
The slippery slope of requiring candidates to profess strong faith and religious values is going to prove to be detrimental to the entire political process. I think that initially the Obama/Rev. Wright relationship was mutually beneficial ... until the sound bites started trickling out. I don't for a minute believe that Sunday after Sunday for 20+ years, Jeremiah Wright ranted about America or white people. I think you're pretty stupid if you buy that logic from the wing nuts on the right. At the same time, some churches do get into matters that affect the everyday lives of the members and, sadly, racism (subtle or not) is something that many black people live with in some form every day of the week. So, yeah, "the man" and how to deal with him might be up for discussion and prayer.
The problem is that people need to believe that somehow Barack transcends all of that and the raw "blackness" of both Trinity and St. Sabina does not reflect who people want to believe who Barack is nor who Barack is selling himself as. But, Barack chose
to be a part of "the black community" and with it comes a myriad of "issues" - good and bad. I wonder how much further he will have to separate himself from the black community at large in order to convince white America that he's "one of the good ones."