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August 2, 2008

Three Black men hold up a banner saying, “What about the Black community, Barack?” McCain is working overtime to get Black people to turn against Barack. No matter what, you can always purchase a turncoat.

Did Barack ever get to answer their question?

Here is the full story:

ST. PETERSBURG — Sen. Barack Obama came to St. Petersburg to call for a new round of $1,000 rebate checks to jump-start the economy, but his message of hope was nearly eclipsed by hecklers.

“The first thing I want to do Florida is just ask you a very simple question: Do you think that you are better off now than you were four years ago or eight years ago? And if you don’t think you’re better off, do you think you can afford another four years of the same failed economic policies that we’ve had under George W. Bush?” Obama asked the boisterous crowd of 1,000 that greeted him Friday with chants of “Yes, we can! Yes, we can.”

Partway through touting his proposals for the economy at the Gibbs High School auditorium, activists with the International People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement began shouting about him ignoring oppression of African-Americans. Obama quizzically looked behind him to see several audience members with a banner reading, “What about the black community, Obama?”

The audience shouted them down, someone snatched the banner, and the Secret Service moved in. Later Obama invited one of the men to ask him a question, and chastised supporters — “Hold on a second, I want everybody to be respectful” — who jeered the young man.

“In the face of all these attacks that are clearly being made on the African community, why is it that you have not had the ability to not one time speak to the interests and even speak on behalf of the oppressed and exploited African community or the black community in this country?” Diop Olugbala asked, citing predatory lenders, Hurricane Katrina, Jena 6 and police shootings.

It’s a question that echoes recent complaints by the Rev. Jesse Jackson and others that Obama has shied from addressing problems facing black Americans.

Obama answered, saying, “On each of these issues that you’ve mentioned, I have spoken out, and I’ve spoken out forcefully. Now, I may not have spoken out the way that you would have wanted me to speak out, which is fine.”

Laura Schrecka, 24, of St. Petersburg was impressed with Obama’s response: “It shows he responds to criticism well.”

Obama used his first stop in St. Petersburg since securing the Democratic nomination to call for a $1,000 “emergency energy rebate” that could go out to families this fall and be funded by taxing the profits of oil companies.

“This rebate will be enough to offset the increased cost of gas for a working family over the next four months,” Obama said. “It will be enough to cover the entire increase in your heating bills. Or you could use the rebate for any of your other bills, or even to pay down your own debt.”

In an exclusive interview with the St. Petersburg Times and Bay News 9, Obama also responded to charges from Sen. John McCain’s campaign that he was playing the race card by telling voters in Missouri this week that the McCain campaign is trying to remind people that Obama “doesn’t look like all those other presidents on the dollar bills.”

“What I said was what I think everybody knows, which is that I don’t look like I came out of central casting when it comes to presidential candidates. … There was nobody there who thought at all that I was trying to inject race in this,” Obama said in the interview to air Sunday on Bay News 9’s Political Connections. “What this has become I think is a typical pattern from the McCain campaign. … They seem to be focused on a negative campaign and what I think our campaign wants to do is focus on the issues that matter to American families.”

At Gibbs High, Obama fielded questions ranging from a national catastrophic fund to help alleviate Florida’s property insurance crisis — Obama supports that — to whether he would push for less meat-eating — Obama confessed he enjoys steak.

Later Friday, Obama made a surprise stop at Parkesdale Farm market in Plant City. Owner Jim Meeks told him former President George Bush, President Bush, former Gov. Jeb Bush and former Rep. Mike Bilirakis had all visited and eaten the strawberry shortcake. “And guess what? They all won their elections,” Meeks said.

“I should get some shortcake, too,” said the candidate, who had to settle for a strawberry milkshake that Meeks said would be good luck, too.

Times political editor Adam C. Smith can be reached at or (727) 893-8241.

16 Comments leave one →
  1. August 2, 2008 5:39 am

    How much money did they get paid for doing that?

    Peace and more hair grease,


  2. August 2, 2008 11:53 am

    they had a good point, but their ignorance was, well, ignorant…

  3. August 2, 2008 3:20 pm

    The man hasn’t been elected yet. Obama should not caterer to black or white, specifically. I believe you should help your self before thinking someone owes you something.

  4. August 2, 2008 3:33 pm

    I think we got a taste of the black man in obama…..

  5. THE ORIGINAL permalink
    August 3, 2008 2:33 am

    I realy hate to break this to everyone, but Obama is nothing more than a puppet like the many who came before him. We act as if the possibility of his election is going to put an end to white supremacy, wich should be our main focus. Weather you want to believe it or not the issue of white supremacy has to do with everything in Amerikkka, and the importance of him being able to maintain this system of white supremacy supercedes everything else wich has been promised to you by him. At the end of the day after all the bullshit rhetoric about equal opportunity for everyone, or whatever he has to report to the mothafuckas that finance his whole campaighn wich are the white supremacist. Stop being bitches looking in the direction of a man who represents himself under the banner of that wich enslaved your black ass in the first fuckin place, and free your damn self. As minister farakhan put it when quoting a passage from the bible ( not word for word) “jesus said I shall baptise you with water, but the one who comes after me shall baptise you with fire and Amerikkka must burn ” , at least in my opinion before there is meaningful talk about whatever the fuck your’e being promised. WAKE THE FUCK UP PEOPLE.

  6. August 3, 2008 4:27 am

    he might be a puppet – just like bush and them. but this puppet is going to inspire a lotta people. thats cool. no president is a revolutionary.

  7. August 3, 2008 5:07 pm

    Re: The disruption of Obamas meeting
    If you want to write about this group again I ask you to spend a few minutes watching a short video of their leader brag about shooting at police. There is a lot more to them than the mainstream media tell us.

  8. August 3, 2008 10:55 pm


    why do you yourself put yourself in a place where you the believe the stupid shit that comes out of your mouth. because if you really believe this, you should leave the country.
    Ameri “kkk”a as you call it is a country that was developed and set forth a government hundreds of years ago to assure people are allowed to live free lives while still understanding that there is a goverment elected by the people who will tax them and provide them services and secruity in which they could lead productive and free lives.

    Regardless of government or a “system” as you call it, it is rare to find another land on this planet that grants the same freedoms that you take for granted every day.
    By the statements you made above, its obvious you dont appreciate the U.S.A and
    what it truly stands for, which is not a government, yet which is freedom for all.

    That is it buddy, there is no conspiracy’s. Black on Black crime is the leading killer of black youth’s age 18-25. NOT THE COPS!!!

    2 of the cops that shot sean bell were BLACK.

    SO EXPLAIN THAT. because thier is obviously no responsibility taken by your comments.
    Its always someone else’s fault and usually that is america or white people.

    Additionally This government today is controlled by women, white men, black men, black women, native american’s, asians, etc… may have used to be a bunch of old white guys sitting around making rules, but it is not like that in 2008. why dont you look up who your congressman or congresswoman are and you might be surprised.

    hundreds of years ago before Abraham lincoln abolished the horrible event that was known as slavery, you could compare the land of North America to Ameri KKK a.

    To use such an extreme comparison to america today is similar to strapping a bomb on your chest and igniting it at a church in the name of an extreme religion.

    have you gone outside of your hood, to non violent thriving communities and seen the people
    living there. They may be corny as fuck to you but at least they trust in their COUNTRY
    and are living free lives.

    your an extreme conspiracy theorist, who probably smokes too much.
    no one is out to get you. your lucky to be in america. lets drop you off in kuwait city, or saudia arabia and watch you get thrown in jail for statements about your country and land you live on similar to the one you made above.

    so stop blaming everyone else for your downfalls.

  9. THE ORIGINAL permalink
    August 4, 2008 12:08 am

    bob rener

    Regardless of there not being another land on this planet that grants the same freedoms of the U.S that dosent at all take away from the fact that this is a currupt government just being made to appear less currupt than others. That is what is called the refinement of white supremacy. Ameri kkka as I put is a country that was developed on the backs of blacks to ensure that only whites were allowed to live free, because we sure as hell werent dureing the time of it’s inception. How can you even think about this country’s beggening’s without giveing notice to the people who brought it into existence ?. “The leading killer of blacks are blacks” that may be the case, but to the extent that there influence to do so comes from the will of the white supremacist who put in place the social conditions wich dictate there actions at a subconcious level the blame is placed back on the white supremacist, but im not expecting you to understand any of that until youv’e thought long and hard about it. You dont have to be white to be a white supremacist, regardless of the race, or ethninticity of my local congressmen, or congresswoman they are white supremacist to the extent that they have adopted the ways and mind state of the white supremacist. I can only use such an extreme comparison of the Amerikkka that exists today, because I see the Amerikkka that exists today for what it realy is wich is the Amerikkka that existed back then at a more refined, and acceptble level. “Stop blameing everyone else for your downfall” for you to say that is like the master who whips the slave every now and then saying stop blameing me for those scars on your back. Ive said all that Ive needed to say concerning this matter. Step outside of your box and see America for what it realy is. Amerikkka !

  10. curt permalink
    August 4, 2008 8:38 am

    The hecklers are from the Uhuru group, a group of militant niggas in St. Pete. They always in the news in St, Pete. McCain aint pay em shit. The pretty much do this to anybody who doesnt agree with what they preach. Them cats is wild.

  11. August 4, 2008 11:57 am

    They got $100 each to do that shit,, WACK people are alot in this community

  12. johnny wishbone permalink
    August 4, 2008 5:17 pm

    i know one thing. like god i don’t play with dice and i don’t believe in coincidence.. rearrange the letters in america and you spell I AM RACE.. dig it.. its right there.. and another thing.. white folks.. just cuz you say a lie like there is no conspiracy or racism.. doesn’t mean we believe it at all.. it actually reminds us that the devil is a lie and we are constantly fighting that level of evil every day.. yall remember to look god in the eye and confess your sins truthfully cuz he already knows what they are..

  13. Brookland permalink
    August 4, 2008 7:31 pm

    Your right ILLSEED he is not a revolutionary, not Malcolm, not Martin he is coming from a different lane and needs to be taken like that. His response to Sean Bell verdict was “We are a country of laws the judge made his decision and we need to respect that.”
    Not all his views dont represent me and mines but out of the two running he is the closest. I feel we should have more choices than two but that would involve changing the whole system. Its like choosing between Burger Kind and McDonalds your whole life you would get sick of eating. If we had a way were more people had realistic chances then just the bloods (Rep) and the crips (Dem) then we could get people closer to our views and canidates could be more like themselves instead of having to play the middle.

    @bob rener
    It dont matter if the cops were all black… In slavery they use to use blacks to control the slaves too. Its not the cops its the system. If we cant make the police (our employees) accountable to us then were paying them to terrorize US.

  14. Hypnotice7 permalink
    August 4, 2008 7:36 pm

    Tell those dudes S.Y.D.A.D. …”Sit yo Dumb Ass Down!”

    @The Original…use some paragraphs brother…i want to read your response but damn

  15. Rubix Cube permalink
    August 4, 2008 7:51 pm

    Damn, the republicans are at it again. proven fact that the gov’t has sent people into crowds to try to disrupt it. Obama def stayed the course and answered the correct way. Just b/c he is black doesn’t mean he needs to turn this into black and white…thats what the republicans and faux news are doing. He represents the people, no matter what color he is.

  16. GOP=Conspiracy Lies & Deception permalink
    September 23, 2008 4:00 am

    Hillary made her pay-outs – It didn’t work.

    McCain is making his payouts and – it won’t work either.


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