A response from Eric Easter

This was down in comments, but it's worth highlighting, not simply because it's a response, but because it makes some fair and credible points:

Hey Ta-Nehisi. Thanks for mentioning my piece, but I think you miss the broader point of it. I don't think anyone was questioning Obama's right to give the speech. Important to note that Pbama has given that speech dozens of times (which is probably why he gave it that day, because of comfort level). The people who talked to me said it was specific to that day in that setting when the press (and middle America) was looking for him to distance himself permanently from Rev. Wright and Trinity. I really think their issue was that there were more effective ways to signal that break than doing that absent black father speech on father's Day.

But that was really just a smokescreen. The real issue is that that progressive crowd is not privy to Obama's strategic moves to win, and they (both black and white liberals) are wary of how far to the center a win for Obama has to go, and how much the strategy to win also will become how he governs. But those same people have also grafted their progressivism on to someone who has always at core been a centrist, or at least someone who looks at both sides first before choosing the liberal view - as opposed to knee jerk liberalism. That should be seen as a strength not a weakness.

This is really a case of Obama playing a running game and the liberal sideline screaming for him to throw more passes.