Opinion: No defense for Obama's pastor Wright

"I just read the letter by Charles Gackstetter (Globe, March 31), and I am incensed by it. He calls Jeremiah Wright a preacher and prophet. I seriously doubt he is even a Christian.

Consider these facts: I am 70 years old, I have been a card-carrying minister for 50 years, I have been the pastor of a church here in Joplin for 20 years, and I have been editor of a small religious newspaper off and on since the early ’70s.

In spite of this, I have never written a letter to any editor. I deplore controversy. I am a card-carrying member of the Cherokee Tribe of Oklahoma and a descendant of survivors of the infamous Trail of Tears. The last survivor was a woman named Becky Neugin, who was fifth cousin to my father and his siblings. She shared some of the atrocities of the Trail of Tears. They never forgot, and shared much of it with me.

I love black people. Blacks attend my church and are welcome. Have blacks been abused and discriminated against? Certainly, they have. I witnessed some of it, growing up in Tulsa and Jenks, Okla., during school integration. I don’t intend to minimize it. My maternal grandfather told me about the Tulsa race riot, and probably participated in it.

I have been vocal in my support of the black Cherokee freedmen (a minority position) in their present conflict with the tribe."

Get the Story:
Rev. Wallace E. Joice: Incensed by Wright defense (The Joplin Globe 4/10)

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