I can't stand it; I have to jump in on the great BB debate.
I don't have an opinion about the racist implications of the phrase or the story which is told about it, except that I think Mummert's point is a good one and has been largely missed. Of course, I can't count the number of times someone has said to me, after a sermon, "wow, I really got to thinking when you said thus and so". Of course, I didn't actually say "thus and so", but they heard it. I guess that's what happened here.
What I do want to comment on is something I painfully learned as a rookie minister/aspirant, back when I was in my early years. I needed to learn that it is unprofessional to criticize a colleague publicly; I saw other ministers doing it, sometimes not very kindly, and though it wasn't my style, I learned that it was okay to do it, especially if one minister had perceived power or prestige over another one. I saw one well-known and previously-respected-by-me minister lacerate a student in a cluster meeting with a few words.
We all felt free to criticize the colleagues we didn't like or whose opinions we didn't share; the older ministers did it in my presence and I did it with groups of fellow students and sometimes with an older minister. We set aside the common sense rule of "is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?" in favor of "can you believe what s/he just said/did?" and the dubious pleasures of gossiping and pulling rank.
I see that going on here and I'm uncomfortable with it. I think we should be modeling better collegiality for our aspirants, not pulling rank or telling them they're overly sensitive or too PC.