The embattled former minister of Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama fired back at the news media during a Chicago funeral service.
The Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s remarks were reported Sunday in the Chicago Sun-Times.
Wright didn’t mention church member Obama, who has denounced Wright’s inflammatory comments circulated in video excerpts of his past sermons.
But in his eulogy at Saturday’s funeral for the late R. Eugene Pincham, a retired judge, Wright did pillory some of his critics, including Fox News commentators Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity.
Wright said Pincham befriended “Jews, Muslims, rabbis, imams, fathers in the Catholic church and (Louis) Farrakhan in the Islamic faith.”
He said: “Fox News can’t understand that. O’Reilly will never get that. Sean Hannity’s stupid fantasy will keep him forever stuck on stupid when it comes to comprehending how you can love a brother who does not believe what you believe.”
The remarks drew a standing ovation. Officials said the megachurch’s 2,500-seats were filled with mourners.
Wright also spoke of patriotism and the history of America’s treatment of blacks. He said the country’s founding fathers “planted slavery and white supremacy in the DNA of this republic,” and said that Thomas Jefferson wrote, “God would punish America for the sin of slavery. I guess that makes Thomas Jefferson unpatriotic.”
Saturday’s funeral at Trinity United Church of Christ was closed to reporters. But the Sun-Times had a reporter inside the church. The newspaper’s Web site Sunday carried a recording of Wright’s remarks as he eulogized Pincham, who died at age 82 earlier this month following a long illness.
While Obama in the past has denounced the most inflammatory of Wright’s comments, the candidate has said Wright shouldn’t be judged solely on a handful of remarks. Obama expressed admiration and support for the pastor who officiated at his wedding, baptized his two daughters and inspired the title of his best-selling book, “The Audacity of Hope.”