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I was reading Sean Wilentz piece in the Daily Beast and got pissed off readin him defend Andy Young and Bob Johnson for the dumb shit they said during the primaries. Wilentz actually called Johnson "one of the most respected deacons of the African-American community." But I decided I wasn't going to be pissed. In fact, it was actually quite small of me to be pissed. Instead I'd remember that the best meditation on Barack Obama I've heard--bar none--was delivered, freestyle, by a disciple of Martin Luther King. The fact is that Barack Obama would not have been elected, not just without the past struggles of our greatest generation, but without their current support. They don't want to all be Bob Johnson. We don't want to all be Pacman Jones. Don't believe what they tell you about a "generational struggle." Even when the "they" is me.

Get used to this clip. I may post it ten times tomorrow--though I wish I had better video. Who can tell, indeed.

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Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle. More

Born in 1975, the product of two beautiful parents. Raised in West Baltimore -- not quite The Wire, but sometimes ill all the same. Studied at the Mecca for some years in the mid-'90s. Emerged with a purpose, if not a degree. Slowly migrated up the East Coast with a baby and my beloved, until I reached the shores of Harlem. Wrote some stuff along the way.

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