Here's a fairly interesting interview with Jesse Jackson. (Peace to J&JP for the link) I think the fact that it's done by a black magazine (ESSENCE) gives it a flavor that's lacking in MSM discussions of Jackson's faith. Put more plainly, ESSENCE knows what it's talking about. Anyway, I think people interpret this Obama/Jesse rift as something new brought about by Obama's "post-racial" approach. This is just wrong. I can remember back in 1995, as the Million Man March approached, a great degree of disenchantment with Jesse, who at the time, was weighing whether to attend. The funny thing is the issue then, was the same issue now--if cast in a different light.
The most attractive thing about M3 was that it was that it offered a sense of empowerment--it said to black men, "Your life is not perfect. But you have it within you to fix it." What so many people forget about M3 is that it wasn't a protest aimed at the broader country--it was a demonstration aimed at ourselves. The theme was, literally, atonement--the idea that black men had disgraced themselves and needed to be redeemed. From a young black perspective, there was always something emasculating something weak about Jesse's protest approach. There was this implicit message in the tactics--protests, boycotts, marches--that if white people don't help you, you're fucked. So many of us came up on the words of Malcolm, and to us, that sort of talk was just another form of shuffling. I'm not saying that's right, but it's how we saw it.