Rev. Otis Moss Jr.
JERUSALEM – Otis Moss, the man slated to become the new chief pastor at Barack Obama’s Chicago church, subscribes to the ideology of retiring pastor Rev. Jeremiah Wright Jr. and is expected to continue Wright’s legacy, according to Malik Zulu Shabazz, national chairman of the New Black Panther Party.
After Wright’s session with reporters at the National Press Club in Washington last week, Obama held his own news conference to denounce the pastor’s “divisive and destructive” remarks and said there had been “great damage” done to the relationship.
Obama, however, said this past weekend he will continue his membership in Trinity. He referred to Moss as “wonderful.”
“Well, you know, the new pastor – the young pastor, Rev. Otis Moss, is a wonderful young pastor. And as I said, I still very much value the Trinity community,” Obama told the New York Times.
Shabazz was an invited guest at Wright’s National Press Club appearance, where Obama’s longtime pastor defended Nation of Islam head Louis Farrakhan and discussed some of his controversial views, including his belief American policy was to blame for 9/11.
In an interview this week with WND and with the John Batchelor Radio Show, Shabazz said he follows Moss’ work and respects the new Trinity pastor.
Asked if he believes Moss will continue in Wright’s legacy, Shabazz replied, “There’s no doubt about that. That’s obvious. He’s his student pastor and would not be where he is if it were not for Jeremiah Wright.”
Petitioned further whether he believes Moss would espouse black liberation theology or some of Wright’s controversial views, including his expressed theory the U.S. spread the AIDS virus to kill blacks, Shabazz said he expects Moss will “stick by” Wright’s principals.
“I don’t expect Moss to be as … bombastic as Rev. Wright. I do expect him to stick by the same principals, which to me have been narrowly construed,” said Shabazz.
“Trinity United Church of Christ, as you’ve seen on the edited video, is filled with middle class black people. Working class black people. And to say that it’s just some hotbed of radicalism or anti-Israelism or whatever is a mischaracterization. So I would expect [Moss] to continue in the good traditions of Trinity. I do expect him to have some controversial stances,” Shabazz said.
Shabazz’s NBPP is a controversial black extremist party whose leaders are notorious for their racist statements and for leading anti-white activism.
Shabazz said he does not believe Obama should be judged by the sermons or views of Wright or Moss.
“Obama should be fairly judged on what he says he believes,” Shabazz told WND and Batchelor.
“If he believes in bringing all people together and in working in a more multiracial fashion and that’s what God put in him, then we shouldn’t tamper with that and try to say everything that Wright or Moss said affects him.”
The 37-year-old Moss, nicknamed the “hip-hop pastor” by congregants, will become the head of Trinity Christ in next month.
In an interview in March with National Public Radio, Moss said he welcomes media scrutiny of his future sermons, calling the expected publicity “exciting.”
“I’m excited, because I’m hoping some people will get saved in the process,” he said.
But his recorded March sermons are already revealing some controversial rhetoric.
In his Easter sermon, Moss spoke at length about the media attention received by Wright. Moss claimed Wright was “lynched” by the international media.
“No one should start a ministry with lynching, no one should end their ministry with lynching,” Moss said.
In a section of the sermon circulated on You Tube, Moss went on to quote a song by the rap artist Ice Cube:
“Do you know who’s got our back? If I was Ice Cube, I would say it a little differently – you picked the wrong folk to mess with,” Moss exclaimed.
The song Moss was referring to is actually titled “Wrong N-gga to f— with.” It includes the lyrics “F— America, still with the triple K,” referring to the Ku Klux Klan, and it uses the spelling “AmeriKKKa.”
The cover image of Ice Cube’s album, titled “Death Certificate,” features a dead man identified as “Uncle Sam” who is covered by an American flag.
As WND reported, Moss’ Easter sermon also compared Wright to Jesus.
“The people gathered around Jesus, they knew better. But they kept repeating sound bytes from his ministry. They kept saying, you know, things like the last shall be first and didn’t say the first shall be last,” Moss said.
In another recent sermon, Moss said blacks are “lepers” with a “skin disease.”
“You see they still are lepers. They still have a skin disease. They had a skin disease. They had a skin disease. Based on their skin condition, they were considered to be second-class citizens. They had a skin issue. They had a skin disease.
“And the lepers lived in a leper project. Thel”epers had bad health care,” he continued. “The lepers were disrespected. They had funny names for lepers. The lepers were considered inferior. They had an inferior school system. The lepers lived in a ghetto leper colony. The lepers were segregated from everybody else.”
Moss went on to imply those who segregated blacks are the “enemy.”
“But [blacks] refused to give up. They decided to leave the city,” he said. “They said that’s not going to stop me from my destiny. Once they left the particular area, they then find out God has cooked things up. The camp of the enemy … nobody is there. So they go into the enemy’s camp. They find food. They find shelter. They find gold. They find silver. They even find some drink. In the enemy’s camp. They find gin and juice. In the enemy’s camp.
“The one who wanted to destroy them ends up being the one who blesses them. Every once in a while God will use your enemies to end up blessing you,” said Moss.
Moss served under Wright as an assistant pastor for two years. He graduated from Yale Divinity School and is the son of a preacher and former adviser to Martin Luther King Jr.
Under Wright, Moss wrote in the Trinity church newsletter that American entertainment companies operate with contempt for the black community.
“Currently, there are about eight companies controlling 90 percent of everything we hear, read, watch on television or view in the movie theater. These companies operate with contempt and disdain for the Black community,” Moss wrote.
He was introducing an article featured in the newsletter about the music industry and blacks.
The same church newsletter was widely featured in the media after it was reported the bulletin reprinted an opinion piece by a top Hamas official that defended terrorism as legitimate resistance, refused to recognize the right of Israel to exist and compared the terror group’s official charter – which calls for the murder of Jews – to America’s Declaration of Independence.
The Hamas piece was published on Wright’s “Pastor’s Page,” which later printed an open letter by a pro-Palestinian activist that labeled Israel an “apartheid” regime and claimed the Jewish state worked on an “ethnic bomb” that kills “blacks and Arabs.”
Shabazz himself is familiar with Wright’s ideology and has given scores of speeches condemning “white men” and Jews.
His NBPP’s official platform states “white man has kept us deaf, dumb and blind,” refers to the “white racist government of America,” demands black people be exempt from military service and uses the word Jew repeatedly in quotation marks.
Shabazz has led racially divisive protests and conferences, such as the 1998 Million Youth March in which a few thousand Harlem youths reportedly were called upon to scuffle with police officers, and speakers demanded the extermination of whites in South Africa.
The NBPP chairman was quoted at a May 2007 protest against the 400-year celebration of the settlement of Jamestown, Va., stating, “When the white man came here, you should have left him to die.”
He claimed Jews engaged in an “African holocaust,” and he has promoted the anti-Semitic urban legend that 4,000 Israelis fled the World Trade Center just prior to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
When Shabazz was denied entry to Canada last May while trying to speak at a black action event, he blamed Jewish groups and claimed Canada “is run from Israel.”
Canadian officials justified the action, stating he has an “anti-Semitic” and “anti-police” record, but some reports blamed what was termed a minor criminal history for the decision to deny him entry.
He similarly blamed Jews for then-New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s initial decision, later rescinded, against granting a permit for the Million Youth March.
In a 1993 speech condemned by the U.S. Congress and Senate, late NBPP chairman Muhammad, lionized on the NBPP site, referred to Jews as “bloodsuckers,” labeled the pope a “no-good cracker” and advocated the murder of white South Africans who would not leave the nation subsequent to a 24-hour warning.
All NBPP members must memorize the group’s rules, such as that no party member “can have a weapon in his possession while drunk or loaded off narcotics or weed,” and no member “will commit any crimes against other party members or black people at all.”
WND previously broke the story when the NBPP endorsed Obama on its own page of the presidential candidate’s official site, which allows registered users to post their own blogs.
The group labels itself on Obama’s site as representing “Freedom, Justice, and Peace for all of Mankind.” It links to the official NBPP website, which contains what can be arguably regarded as hate material.