Calling Dr. Jim Wallis President Barack Obama’s “spiritual advisor,” the popular conservative news and opinion website The Daily Caller reported July 7 that the liberal evangelical leader went on a “race rant” at a recent event Hot Springs. The story was subsequently picked up by a number of other conservative media outlets and has been making national waves.
Wallis visits the White House on a regular basis, logging 65 meetings with the President or the First Lady, according to The Daily Caller. And at his June 29 speech in Hot Springs at the Wild Goose Festival, a progressive Christian event, the website portrays his remarks as “accusing all Americans, especially those who take conservative political stances, of being racists.”
But was it really an accusatory, racist rant, from a man “who has the ear of the leader of the free world,” as the website alleges?
J. Clarkson, the festival’s Director of Strategic Partnerships, says the the address aimed to generate “a conversation about justice and what people of faith can do to bring about a more just society.”
“While some of our festival goers probably agree with most of the statements made by Wallis, others might feel he has gone too far or, just as likely, not far enough,” Clarkson adds. “Whether the subject is marriage equality, immigration reform, Stand Your Ground laws, poverty, or persistent symbols of racism in popular culture, we feel that the time has long since come for people of faith to speak and work on behalf of justice for all of our brothers and sisters. If Jim Wallis’ words seem strident, it may be a reflection of our impatience with those who continue to twist the doctrines of our faith to justify an unsustainable status quo.”
A video of Wallis’ remarks at the Wild Goose Festival is below.
Video embedded here via Dale Lature’s YouTube page.
What do you think? Was Wallis’ speech a constructive dialogue or did it go too far? Feel free to voice your opinion in the comments field below.