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Land Apologizes For Obama And Black Leader Comments

A key leader in the Southern Baptist Convention has apologized for comments he made about President Obama and black leaders.
"I certainly apologize to anyone who was hurt or offended by my remarks," Richard Land, president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Committee of the Southern Baptist Convention, told USA Today.

Land had said Obama "poured gasoline on the racialist fires" when he commented on the Trayvon Martin case. He also referred to Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson as a "mob" of "racial ambulance" chasers. He later said that black men are "statistically more likely to do you harm than a white man. Is it tragic that people react that way? Yes. Is it unfair? Yes? But it is understandable."

The president of the Southern Baptist Convention yesterday said his organization wants better relations with the black community and he is working on a statement about the comments.

"Certainly we want good to come to this situation," Rev. Bryant Wright told

"Racial reconciliation is a huge priority for southern Baptist Christians and there will be a statement later today or in the morning," Wright said.

According to USA Today, Land, who has claimed to be "one of the prime movers behind the Southern Baptist Convention's 1995 resolution apologizing for the denomination's racist past," went on in his own voice to address the controversial comments he read/said about Trayvon Martin, George Zimmerman and the president:

"I obviously overestimated the extent of progress that has been made in slaying the racial dragon of our past. I should have remembered that whenever we have a discussion about race, the ghosts of our ancestors are in the room with us. And I underestimated the need to be extremely careful in how you address any controversial issue that involves race as a factor.

I am grieved that anyone would feel my comments have retarded in any way the Southern Baptists' march toward racial reconciliation, which I have been committed to for the entirety of my ministry, since 1962."

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