Princeton professor Cornel West is on an anti-Obama tear, and tonight he took it to MSNBC's The Ed Show. West complained about the president's record sticking up for the poor and working class, and when asked by the left-wing news show host to explain why he said President Obama has "a certain fear of free black men," West replied:
I think he does have a predilection much more toward upper-class white brothers and Jewish brothers and a certain distance from free black men who will tell him the truth about himself as well as what's going on in black communities, brown communities, red communities and poor white and working-class communities.
Dr. West, we need people like you to make sure that our president and the powers that be don't ever forget about the permanent recession that poor Americans and many African Americans are living in, and their responsibility to change that reality. But your assertion that President Obama favors rich white men and Jewish people over "free black men" sounds about as grounded in reality — and rooted in personal resentment — as right-winger Glenn Beck's assertion that the president has "a deep-seated hatred for white people." Both statements reflect as much about the accuser as they do about Obama.
Clearly you're still heated over President Obama's appointment of your nemesis from Harvard, Larry Summers, as an economic adviser (and then there's that little matter of not getting tickets to the inauguration), but the personal attacks are beneath you. If you want to hold this president — or any president — to a black agenda, that's great; but please rein in the personal agenda.
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Sheryl Huggins Salomon is senior editor-at-large of The Root and a Brooklyn, N.Y.-based editorial consultant. Follow her on Twitter.