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Obama Draws Fire for Comments on Small Town America

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posted on Apr, 11 2008 @ 06:44 PM

Hillary Clinton and John McCain both ripped into Barack Obama Friday for reportedly saying residents of small-town America “cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them” out of bitterness over lost jobs, a remark his opponents interpreted as arrogant.

The Huffington Post reported that Obama made the comments while speaking to a group of wealthy California donors in San Francisco.

From transcript of speech: "But the truth is, is that, our challenge is to get people persuaded that we can make progress when there's not evidence of that in their daily lives. You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing's replaced them. And they fell through the Clinton administration, and the Bush administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not. So it's not surprising then that they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations."

So, apparently Obama feels people who have lost their jobs to "free-trade" are bitter. And racist. And anti-trade. Who cling to their religion and their guns.

These comments today have only confirmed my long-held feelings about this man. I don't trust him.

posted on Apr, 11 2008 @ 06:56 PM

Originally posted by kattraxx
So, apparently Obama feels people who have lost their jobs to "free-trade" are bitter.

SOME are. And with good reason. Their jobs have been shipped overseas. Their families are suffering. Why shouldn't they be bitter?

Before people get crazy about this, remember, he said, "You go into some of these small towns..." Some people DO feel this way. He's stating a fact. He's been there talking with them for days. He's relaying what he has found out. I'm from Ohio. I think what he's saying is true.

He didn't say anyone was racist.

[edit on 11-4-2008 by Benevolent Heretic]

posted on Apr, 11 2008 @ 08:25 PM
A lot of people in my area lost their jobs when all the plants (there were many as recently as ten years ago) closed and moved to Mexico or overseas. There are no jobs to replace them, so they're working at McDonald's or Wal-Mart at half what they used to make or less. They are not anti-trade, but they are anti free trade--agreements like CAFTA and NAFTA--which they justifiably see as the cause of their losses. Many are religious; this is the Bible Belt and faith is very important to them. Some are xenophobic.

He may sound a little condescending, but what Obama says is mostly true.

posted on Apr, 12 2008 @ 01:00 AM
Racist: "Those mexicans are taking our jobs"

Religious: "God, why can't I find a job?"

Guns: "If someone takes my job I'm going to shoot him."

posted on Apr, 12 2008 @ 06:51 AM
Some people are bitter? Yep.

But .... - 'some people in these small towns are clinging to their guns and religion.'

Damn, that is so condenscending.

I can just see him saying that while looking down his nose and sniffing.

Newsflash Obama ... this is America. The constitution says we can have our guns and our religion. You have made comments that sound like you want to take away our right to bear arms. We won't let it happen. Oh .. and was your comment about religion because your girlfriend, Oprah, is spurting that whackadoo cult religion and you want everyone to join it? That isn't going to happen either. Not with me anyways.

posted on Apr, 12 2008 @ 12:51 PM
What does the Second Amendment have to do with people losing their jobs? Obama expresses his gun control sentiment by insinuating that small town Americans who own legally registered guns are somehow a threat because they're bitter about losing their jobs and have misplaced their frustrations onto "immigrants". ???

His dishonest generalization "antipathy towards people not like them, or anti-immigrant sentiment" is blatantly as racist as it is misleading. There is a huge difference between immigration and illegal entry into our country. And he knows it, but continues to address the issue of illegal immigration as if Americans who are against it are racist. It's a legal issue, but he insists on attempting to make it a racial issue. Even those small town Americans who have lost their jobs can recognize the difference, Mr. Obama, despite your insinuations to the contrary.

He was clearly stereotyping small town Americans who have lost their jobs as bitter, frustrated, gun-toting, religious racists. And no one can spin it any other way. It was a grossly dishonest blanket generalization.

His campaign has been busy trying to spin his comments ever since they hit the internet, so it seems they feel the necessity clean up after him again, even if his followers choose to deny it.

posted on Apr, 12 2008 @ 03:54 PM
One of the things rarely reported in the MSM is how policy affects small town people - and politicians rarely care because that's not where the big votes lie.

I don't know enough about obama to say whether his statement was patronising and ill-informed, stupid, or genuine feelings badly expressed.

Of course not understanding the nuaces of US speech patterns I can't be even close to an informed judgement.

That doesn't mean I don't enjoy reading other peoples opinions though

posted on Apr, 12 2008 @ 04:15 PM
reply to post by FlyersFan

I was going to say ELITIST, but condescending is a good description too.
He is now claiming that " he could have said it better".
I think he means he wasn't parsing his words as carefully as he should have.

So instead we got a little dose of his unadulterated thought process.

I just read on Google news, that Hillary is calling his remarks ELITIST too.
That's right, HILLARY called someone ELITIST.
Can someone PLEASE check on the welfare of the space/time continuum?

posted on Apr, 12 2008 @ 11:17 PM
reply to post by FlyersFan

Yeah, even though I agreed with his overall speech, I cannot understand what he meant about grasping on to guns and religion.

I get his point and understand what he means, and he's absolutely right, except for those two things.

I didn't understand that.

posted on Apr, 13 2008 @ 06:56 AM

Originally posted by Sublime620
he's absolutely right, except for those two things.

He's absolutely right that some (many?) people are 'bitter'.

His statement about 'clinging to guns and religion' was very telling. Condenscending and out of touch.

His statement about people not wanting Illegal Aliens here was also very telling. He has no clue. None. People don't want illegals here because they COST US MONEY. They are bad for the USA.

Geeeeeeze .. this guy's lack of experience is showing.

posted on Apr, 13 2008 @ 09:40 AM
reply to post by FlyersFan

See, I disagree with that. As of now, prices are rising so fast, the paycheck can't keep up with it. Mexicans are taking the jobs that no one could live off of anyway (they just happen to not mind living with 10 people per house).

Even if Mexicans were disallowed this job, with the way things are going right now, Americans would get the job at a higher rate, but prices would skyrocket up to balance things off.

Just seems to me that the lower and middle class are going to get squeezed to death unless someone steps in, not against Mexicans, but against big business.

**Edited to add:

And this is all just further proof that the trickle down effect is crap.

[edit on 13-4-2008 by Sublime620]

posted on Apr, 13 2008 @ 10:06 AM
An alleged higher cost of goods that could come about in certain sectors due to illegals not being around would be offset greatly by the amount of money Americans would save without illegals here.

They cost us billions each year. Billions.

Edited to add - This was a great quote – What Obama said was this - "Vote for me you corn-cob smok’n, banjo-strok’n, chicken-chokin’, cousin-pokin’, Inbred Hillbilly Racist Morons." blog here

[edit on 4/13/2008 by FlyersFan]

posted on Apr, 13 2008 @ 11:44 PM
reply to post by FlyersFan

Perhaps he didn't mean being religious, or wanting guns, as much as voting based off of those.

Makes more sense that way.

One reason you would think that he meant that was because he said at one point that people have "given up on voting based on the politicians stance on the economy (because it never helps)..." so they cling to voting based off of guns, religion, immigration, etc.

Originally posted by FlyersFan

Edited to add - This was a great quote – What Obama said was this - "Vote for me you corn-cob smok’n, banjo-strok’n, chicken-chokin’, cousin-pokin’, Inbred Hillbilly Racist Morons." blog here

[edit on 4/13/2008 by FlyersFan]

Oh, and I've lived in both NC and Pennsylvania and I can vouch that there are many: cor-cob smok'n, banjo-strok'n, chicken-chokin', cousin-pokin', inbred hillbilly racist morons in both of those states.

Currently in NC, they make up at least 40% of the people in the mountains (where I currently live) and tons of them in Pennsylvania too.

Where I currently live, people who don't even know me will say racist stuff to me just because they assume that since I'm white I'll agree with them.

I never had that happen in New Jersey.

*edited to add;

I even lived 30 min from wilkes-barre, which is the PA town he mentioned in the article.

[edit on 13-4-2008 by Sublime620]

posted on Apr, 13 2008 @ 11:53 PM
Well I'd rather cling to religious morals and constitutional rights, since there's no work left to cling to, instead of jackin' and cappin' in the 'hood screaming "God damn America!"

posted on Apr, 13 2008 @ 11:59 PM
On the immirgartion issue, I have been out of work for quite some time, and have been trying to get back into some labor work for the summer. Every contractor and landscaper I ever worked for has told me they can't hire me because I would cost them more than an illegal. Particulalry for the insurance doing treework.

[edit on 4/14/0808 by jackinthebox]

posted on Apr, 14 2008 @ 12:00 AM
reply to post by jackinthebox


Illegal Immigration
Gas prices

What the hell are we supposed to do to live?

posted on Apr, 14 2008 @ 12:02 AM
I've been living out of my car since Halloween and hacking a signal so I can post here on ATS with a "borrowed" computer. So the answer is, we don't live.

EDIT to add: And the decision was made to murder my unborn child as a result.

Also to add: I can't even get a job in a burger joint because I no habla.

[edit on 4/14/0808 by jackinthebox]

[edit on 4/14/0808 by jackinthebox]

posted on Apr, 14 2008 @ 12:04 AM
reply to post by jackinthebox

Not the greatest idea I know, but:

Have you tried applying for housing projects? There's got a to be half-way house or a place you can live for free (or next to it) while you get back on your feet.

posted on Apr, 14 2008 @ 12:05 AM
reply to post by Sublime620

Cot in a shelter and an eight year waiting list for housing. You don't want the cot.

[edit on 4/14/0808 by jackinthebox]

posted on Apr, 14 2008 @ 12:08 AM
Great thread Kattraxx...

Nothing surprises me anymore about any politician.

That's just another indicator to me that his judgment is totally skewed...but then again, he knows that none of the people he just lumped into that category and insulted are likely to vote for him anyway.

His only concern was sucking up to the "rich" Californians he was talking to at the time.

It's just like him... sitting in the pew of his church for 20 years now and claiming he "heard nothing." Give us all a break.

I am not just picking on Obama, trust me, they ALL will say and do anything to get elected...bottom line.

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