D.C. marches inclusive – up to a point
George Curry | 9/9/2013, 9:52 a.m. | Updated on 9/9/2013, 9:52 a.m.
Jackson alienated Obama supporters when he was caught on tape disparaging then-candidate Obama. As Jackson prepared to be interviewed on Fox and Friends Weekend, he was overheard saying Obama had been talking down to Black people. Jackson told a fellow guest that he wanted to cut off Obama’s testicles. He quickly apologized for what he called “crude and hurtful comments.”
Jackson’s comments hurt his standing in the Black community more than it hurt Obama, who accepted Jackson’s apology before going on to win the general election.
Although Obama accepted Jackson’s apology, Jackson has not been among the civil rights leaders who meet regularly with the president or Valerie Jarrett, a top White House adviser. And many African Americans, who overwhelmingly support the nation’s first Black president, have yet to forgive Jackson for his comments. Few will admit that in one respect, Jackson was right – Obama sometimes comes across as lecturing Black audiences while not doing the same when speaking to mostly White groups.
Jackson acknowledges that he was wrong for saying he wanted to dismember
a certain part of Obama’s lower body. However, that was five years ago and the civil rights leader has contributed too much over the past four decades to be forever excommunicated from the Black race.
The two recent marches on Washington are over and shouldn’t be the yardstick by which we judge the value of Black leaders. The Black community is in a crisis and needs all of the help it can get, regardless of how unpopular that might be with others.
George E. Curry, former editor-in-chief of Emerge magazine, is editor-in-chief of the National Newspaper Publishers Association News Service. He is a keynote speaker, moderator and media coach. Curry can be reached through http://www.georgecurry.com.