“I will stand with the Muslims should the political winds shift in an ugly direction.”

Pretty scary, coming from a U.S. Senator running for President of the United States.

That quote from Barack Obama’s book, The Audacity Of Hope, is splattered all over the Internet, particularly on hundreds of blogging sites and e-mails, denigrating the senator and pleading with folks to prevent his ascension to the Oval Office, at all costs.

First, my position: I am opposed to the election of Mr. Obama, for a number of reasons. I feel an Obama presidency would be a major mistake. I am not among those who are aglow with oratory eloquence and charisma that so often electrifies people into a false sense of love and security. To my way of thinking, there are too many red flags about the man which causes great skepticism.

But, for the sake of blogger credibility and honest reporting, I must stand up for the senator in this one issue. The quotation is incorrect and totally out of context. Such spreading of false statements cause great damage to the credibility of those who try to impart valid information.

I obtained a copy of The Audacity Of Hope for the expressed purpose of seeing for myself that if this was true. After all, it is cited in hundreds of web sites. Sure enough, on page 261, Senator Obama writes about the problems of profiling and discrimination against American citizens of mid-east descent. This is the exact text:

“In the wake of 9/11, my meetings with Arab and Pakistani Americans, for example, have a more urgent quality, for the stories of detentions and FBI questioning and hard stares from neighbors have shaken their sense of security and belonging. They have been reminded that the history of immigration in this country has a dark underbelly: they need specific assurances that their citizenship really means something, that America has learned the right lessons from the Japanese internments during WWII, and that I will stand with them should the political winds shift in an ugly direction.”

It is clear that Senator Obama did not use the term “Muslims,” anywhere in the paragraph. He was referring to American Arabs and Pakistanis, in general, thousands of whom have resided in this country for decades. Some have fought and defended this country in uniform. Some may be Muslim, some may be Christian.

It saddens me because I am one of those bloggers who seeks trust from my readers, who tries to ensure accuracy in whatever I impart, and who is angry at incompetents who try to sway public opinion by manipulating and skewing facts that are not facts at all. It hurts us all.

Sometime in the future, I may write a more comprehensive article on the reasons why I feel Barack Obama would be a mistake for America. Whether you agree with the opinion or not, I will assure my readers that any and all information within is verifiable.

Meanwhile, be careful about believing everything that comes across your e-mail circuit. The Obama candidacy — or any candidacy — would benefit from becoming the victim of wrongful accusations.