John Lewis not backing down from controversial remarks

10/20/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday | Listen to this entire show:

Civil rights hero John Lewis is not backing down from his controversial remarks regarding the John McCain campaign.

The 68-year-old Georgia Democratic Congressman said last week that Republicans are "sowing the seeds of hatred and division" by saying Barack Obama was "palling around" with terrorists.

Lewis invoked George Wallace, the former segregationist governor of Alabama, saying, "He never fired a gun, but he created the climate and conditions that encouraged vicious attacks against innocent Americans who were simply trying to exercise their constitutional rights."

The Obama camp immediately backed away from the comments, but John McCain says Obama still has not repudiated all of them. Before speaking last night in Sarasota, WMNF’s Virginia Hoffman spoke with Lewis, and asked about Barack Obama’s reaction to his comments.

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Lewis is right. Why should he backdown when he's just speaking the truth? The Straight Talk Express has become the slimiest campaign run in the last 40 years.

Proud of John Lewis

Its refreshing for a congressman to speak out against the politics of hate after we've seen seven years with too much silence, and not surprising that it would be a veteran hero of the civil rights movement. John Lewis must stand his ground to help us move to the next chapter of the American story, the next transformation. The politics of hate should be identified wherever it occurs and made unacceptable. This is not "political correctness" but standing up for freedom. There is a spectrum of political/social beliefs in the light of day and no spectrum in the black pit of hate. Democracy cannot exist under the scimitar of hate and hate speech is part of that. We won't allow it in our children. Why do we allow adults?

I agree

I agree... he should be allowed to say anything he wants if he feels that way but if he only said that because McCain is a republican and this "politics of hate" that I hear about does not seem to exist with Democrats then I have no respect for his comments or him... he can say it but it rings hollow

I so agree with Lewis standing by his own perceptions and beliefs. Given how passionately polarized the election seems to be, his observations are among the milder of the attributions we've all been inundated with. It's a strange thing when a simple truth can bring out intense demands for someone to repudiate it. Strange times and political crazy-making. What Obama once called "the silly season" is now getting to be "the sickening season." The investment in power and control that the Republicans may fear to lose is bringing this on. It would be a nightmare to have them continue in office. They are not healthy mature balanced people.

Objective? Anybody?

Bill Ayers did commit crimes of domestic terrorism. He worked together with Barrack on the Annenberg Challenge, which failed. There is no hatred in facts. Some do hate the truth.