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Wright urges lawyers to be models for youths
Rev. Jeremiah Wright Jr. urged a crowd of lawyers and judges on Thursday to follow the examples of Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama by showing young people the possibilities.
Recalling a mantra from the late Judge R. Eugene Pincham, a longtime member of Trinity United Church of Christ, Wright reminded the more than 600 lawyers gathered for the annual banquet of the Cook County Bar Association, "You can't be what you can't see."
"Our young people need to see a Hillary Clinton—a female lawyer, senator and almost the first female to win the Democratic presidential nomination," said Wright, the retired senior pastor of Trinity, which Obama attended for more than 20 years. "They need to see a Barack Obama . . . They need to see a Louis Farrakhan change the lives of African-American men dogging our system."
The 15-minute address before the oldest African-American bar association in the U.S. was the first time Wright has spoken publicly since Obama withdrew from the South Side church last month.
That controversy began when sound bites of Wright's sermons, including a critique of America's foreign and domestic policies, surfaced on the Internet, causing some to question the pastor's patriotism. In a sermon delivered at Trinity last month, Rev. Michael Pfleger, pastor of St. Sabina Catholic Church, revived the controversy by mocking Clinton.
On Thursday, Pfleger introduced Wright as his hero, friend and pastor and a "gift to this country, whether it realizes it or not."
Both men received standing ovations.