June 11th, 2009
05:47 PM ET
13 years ago

Wright revisits 'them Jews' remark

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/06/11/art.wright1.gi.jpg caption=" The Rev. Jeremiah Wright is looking to calm this week's firestorm over remarks termed anti-Semitic by critics."]

(CNN) - The Rev. Jeremiah Wright is looking to calm this week's firestorm over remarks termed anti-Semitic by critics, saying Thursday he meant to say "Zionists" instead of "them Jews" when referring to people in Washington who do not want President Obama speaking with him.

"Let me say, like Hillary, I misspoke. Let me just say 'Zionists,'" Wright told SIRIUS radio host Mark Thompson.

Earlier this week, the former Chicago pastor told Virginia newspaper The Daily Press he no longer speaks with Obama - a former congregant of his Trinity United Church - because "Them Jews aren't going to let him talk to me."

"I'm not talking about all Jews, all people of the Jewish faith, I'm talking about Zionists," Wright said Thursday, adding that his comments were in reference to "historical facts."

"I'm not talking about emotionally charged words or the fact that like Jimmy Carter's book, that because he used the word that Jews use, 'apartheid,' he gets labeled anti-Semitic."

"They can jump on that one phrase if they want to, but they can't undo history and the facts of Jewish historians and Jewish theologians who write about what's going on, who write about the enormous influence that AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee) has on our government and on United States policy and the United Nations."

The White House declined to comment on Wright's original remarks this week.

Filed under: Jeremiah Wright
soundoff (247 Responses)
  1. Tom

    ok, i can only imagine why obama stopped talking to this moron

    June 11, 2009 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  2. J.P.



    ...if THAAAT's all he meant...

    Nothing to see here, move along.

    June 11, 2009 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  3. Coloradem

    The Rev. Wright should not be news. What he said was horrible, but I find it somewhat curious that the Rev. Billy Graham said essentially the same thing and that was covered up by the media. Ann Coulter says that "Jews just need to be perfected" and she is invited to speak at conservative meetings all of the time. Why is the Rev. Wright taken to task yet these other two are let off with a passing yawn by the media and conservatives? Any ideas? I have my thoughts, but I'm curious what others think.

    June 11, 2009 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  4. Peter E

    He's yesterday's news! Get with the times media!

    June 11, 2009 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  5. bozo bama

    this clown is just like Jimmy Carter, hates America and hates Jews. No wonder Barry was a member of his church for 20 years.

    June 11, 2009 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  6. Lori from MO

    i am a liberal. i voted for Obama & would vote for him again. That said, stop giving Rev Wright coverage! He is obviously feeble & insane & is just trying to incite people. Shame on him but shame on you for giving him a national platform. He is a racist & just because he's black doesn't mean he's any less of a racist than a white man.

    For those of you slamming Obama for going to this guy's church, look in the mirror. Almost all of the boomer gen & prior was raised w/ separation a mainstay. You have people in your family that have racist viewpoints & you love them anyway & ignore the bad parts. Unless of course they go public with their ridiculous views, then no matter how much you love them, you must disown them. Exactly what Obama did.

    Stop being hypocrites in glass houses, someone might just see you for who/what you are.

    June 11, 2009 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  7. Buddy Gilmour

    Its hard to believe anyone ever took this man seriously. I'm guessing he didn't used to be so looney, and that he performs his regular duties as a Reverend in a more conventional fashion. But more interesting is the support he gets from many of the folks posting comments here. I guess we should all be happy that a Jew-hating black and Jew-hating whites have found their common ground. But whatever happened to Love thy neighbor as thyself?

    June 11, 2009 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  8. Joanna

    The man is utterly tactless. He could have said "handlers" and everyone would have understood perfectly and most would also have recognized his bitterness at having lost any influence he might have once had.

    June 11, 2009 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  9. David

    President Obama sat under the Rev. Wright for 20 years probably for the same reasons many whites sit under their preachers who spew hate and intolerance about other people and groups. Its moreso the pot calling the kettle black. I'm white and I cant tell you how many times I heard pastors preach against inter racial marraige and inter mingling....on top of other issue and groups ( includes Muslims, Jews, etc). This sort of stuff exists in alot of churches, and they continue to hold sizeable congregations. I will say however, I do not agree with any intolerance being preached over the pulpit, and on the same token, I dont agree nor practice what alot of what over the pulpit in those regards. Do I believe that President Obama believes everything that Wright preaches? I do not think so. This however, should force us all to look and ask are we guilty of the same thing we are acusing Wright of....as well as take a look at our associations. I stayed in my church because I had convictions that superceded what was being taught at times. Perhaps this was the case with President Obama whenever he attended.

    June 11, 2009 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  10. Ron

    This guy always has a habit of saying the wrong thing. He's also Obama (aka Barry Sotoreo) spritual mentor.

    June 11, 2009 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  11. Hans Brecker RI

    what a perfecty example of an anti-christian.................He definitely is no "Reverend" and positively is not CHRISTian

    June 11, 2009 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  12. cabianni

    Wright preaches an extremist anti-American ideology
    Obama studied and sat under his tutelage for years
    Obama appreciated his beliefs and teachings or he would have left
    Obama would not and does not condemn his teachings
    Obama embraces and Internationalist ideology over American nationalism and believes that is what is best for this country

    June 11, 2009 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  13. Veronica

    Like Palin, this tool's 15 minutes were up a looooooooooooooooong time ago ...

    June 11, 2009 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  14. RLG

    If this how a man of the cloth talks, I certainly hope no one listens to him because there will be more hatred and racism than ever.

    June 11, 2009 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  15. Brian in AZ

    Yeah...And when he railed against whites he was REALLY referring to the Vikings under Erik the Red–and his attacks on America were really a repudiation of the Italian mapmaker, right? RIGHT?

    June 11, 2009 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  16. Charlie in Maine

    I consider myself left of center. Please.... reasonable folks to the right of center please know that this idiot does not speak for me. I complain a lot in my blogs about "right wing-nuts" who is this guy but a "left wing-nut"? Does he thinks he's doing the left a favor by showing that we have our share of jerks too?

    I guess if free speeh was easy every nation would have it.

    June 11, 2009 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  17. GOP or RIP?

    makesUwonder June 11th, 2009 5:20 pm ET

    Guess the old Rev. got a call from his buddy Barry Obama asking the Rev. to announce he "misspoke".

    The Rev. didn't misspeak, he said exactly what is in his heart. He's a racist, has always been a racist, and will always be a racist.

    There's no doubt that the Obama's feel the same way the Rev. feels. You don't hang out with someone for 20 plus years and not share their views.

    Yah – that's why Obama has Rahm Israel Emanuel as his chief of staff.

    I guess while you may "wonder," you don't "think"

    (PS – these were antisemitic comments, not racist. Judaism is a religion, not a race)

    June 11, 2009 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  18. LacrosseMom

    @ Fair is Fair........ Actually I have often asked CNN why they continue to cover Palin.

    You see, Fair is Fair, Newt, Limbaugh and Palin are politicians (yes, even Rush is), however Wright is a regular person. Who is a nut case.

    That's the difference, Newt, Palin and Limbaugh are GOP leaders...... not so Wright. Get it?

    PS. A racist is a racist, I will call it like I see it. IF we don't whether its on the right or the left we will never purge racism from our Nation.

    June 11, 2009 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  19. Chris

    and we are supposed to believe that Obama never heard any of this hate speech in the 20 years prior to 2008...right

    June 11, 2009 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  20. rob-nyc

    like Al Sharpton, i wish Rev Wright was my brother from another mother.

    June 11, 2009 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  21. Lauren

    And there are STILL those who believe that Obama and his family sat in this mans church and SUPPOSEDLY never knew he was a racist.

    This man married Obama and Michelle, baptized his kids, and there are some who still think, Obama never knew this man hated white americans.

    But yet, Obama has said, that America is NOT a Christian nation, and is one of the largest Muslim countries in the world. THIS being said by Obama, but yet, some still think he never heard what Wright preached in 20 years.

    June 11, 2009 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  22. Rick McKinney, Texas

    There goes my dream ....
    Silly as a seam...

    Mr. NoObama – you will be haunted for all the debt you are creating... Listen to Cantor and Boehner – two VERY SMART people


    June 11, 2009 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  23. Sniffit

    @ CJG, who said "The Dems have their own Rush in Jeremiah!"

    How wonderfully untrue. I don't see any Dems/libs here doing anything but acknowledging that what he said is compeltely asinine, harmful and dangerous...and overwhelmingly condemning him for it. If you'd really like to make the comparison stick, then I'd suggest that next time Rush opens his fat, irrational, mendacious yapper, all the GOPers should come to the Commentary sections here and condemn him for what he said...you know, rather than repeating him verbatim. THEN you could make the comparison, because both would be condemning loudmouthed idiots in their party. As of now, however, the GOP fully embraces and internalizes Rush's bombastic drivel.

    June 11, 2009 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  24. J.P.

    Yes, but what does his spiritual protege, Barry Soetoro Dunham, think of this?

    Can anyone please tell me WHY the president of the United States has an alias?

    Oh, that's right... to distance himself from his "spiritual mentors" and the shady terrorist friends and neighbors he chose to associate himself with in his formative years, and his adult life, too.

    "To avoid being mistaken for a sellout, I chose my friends carefully. The more politically active black students. The foreign students. The Chicanos. THE MARXIST PROFESSORS AND STRUCTURAL FEMINISTS."
    – Barack H. Obama (or whatever alias he is using these days)

    June 11, 2009 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  25. Malia

    Comment by "phoenix86"
    Amen! That is why Obama has been busy reaching out to the Muslim world. Sadly, the mainstream media was forced to report on this hateful man thanks to Hannity. Safe to say that America is finally coming to their senses on the real Obama...

    June 11, 2009 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10