Mayor Daley on Senator Obama and Prof. Ayers

Mike Dorning and Rick Pearson, of the Chicago Tribune’s Washington Bureau, today quoted Chicago’s mayor on the “dangerous” friend of Senator Obama’s, Illinois Professor William Ayers — the man that ABC and Fox moderators, and many white supremacist websites, have gotten very excited about. They begin thus:

Chicago Mayor Richard Daley, whose father was famously not so sympathetic to anti-war protesters, is coming to the defense of Barack Obama for his friendship with former Weather Underground member Bill Ayers.

And then they quote Chicago’s moderate Mayor Daley (pictured here, image source):

There are a lot of reasons that Americans are angry about Washington politics. And one more example is the way Senator Obama’s opponents are playing guilt-by-association, tarring him because he happens to know Bill Ayers. I also know Bill Ayers. He worked with me in shaping our now nationally-renowned school reform program. He is a nationally-recognized distinguished professor of education at the University of Illinois/Chicago and a valued member of the Chicago community. I don’t condone what he did 40 years ago but I remember that period well. It was a difficult time, but those days are long over. I believe we have too many challenges in Chicago and our country to keep re-fighting 40 year old battles.

Indeed, people do change and grow. White supremacist websites, and their followers now in the mainstream media, have yet to learn that lesson.

They also seem locked into arguments about guilt by association, but only for a Black candidate. Once again, they seem to accent the “dangerous black man” imge of the hoary white racial frame. Indeed, where are the similar 40-year-old stories on “wild” acquaintances of Senator McCain?

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