Imagine if Colin Powell, the genuinely post-racial man Obama merely claims to be, had run in 1996. Would the campaign have dwindled down to Aids conspiracy theories and the genetic predisposition of clapping rhythms? No. Because that's not where Colin Powell lives. There are no Jeremiah Wrights in his life. This problem is of Obama's making, and it's killing him.
Indeed; Obama's current troubles are directly related to how he launched his public career.
Why did he join Trinity UCC, headed by Rev. Wright, all those years ago? Because he wanted to be a "community organizer," a person who helped, who led, and who fit in with, other African-Americans -- even though he is not a conventional African-American himself. In other words, his association with TUCC and Wright provided him with the necessary Black bona fides to be accepted as a leader of the Black community.
Colin Powell joined the Army as the foundation of his adult identity. Without ceasing to be Black, he became much more. He became capable of leading black and white and red and brown and yellow, and in doing so making them more than their colors. Jeremiah Wright reduces everyone to their colors and says you can never be more, or at least other, than that. Obama wants to transcend that ideology (he says), but without utterly repudiating Wright and Trinity and starting over, he can't. No matter what he says.