Monday, May 2, 2011

Step away from the TV, people

What is going on in this country?  Honestly.

I am saddened to see so many people accusing the President of self-promotion in his speech last night.   Really?

He described the chain of events that led to the death of Osama bin Laden, a few of which REQUIRED HIS KNOWLEDGE AND AUTHORIZATION AS THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES.

yes, I totally just wrote that in caps.

In order to justify and legitimize the act of killing this man in the eyes of our nation and the world, it is completely expected for him to lay out the process it required.    The United States is not a rogue nation in the business of killing the leaders of terrorist groups.  We don't just haphazardly order the deaths of people.  We have standards, exceptionally high ones, that must be met in order for things like this to occur. 

I have friends, some of which are dear friends of mine, who began accusing him of "taking credit" for this before the speech was even made.    How exactly is that even possible? 

Before the President had even been granted the chance to speak, there were people criticizing what he might say, listening to everything with a slant, hearing only what fit into their predetermined ideas about him.

Letting their biases about him dictate what they heard.

Forgive me, but since when did it become permissible to put words in the mouths of those who've not yet spoken?  When did it become okay to slander the President of the United States?  I'm guessing that happened at some point around the time that people started questioning where he was born. 

Think about it, people.

Those who hate Obama and everything he stands for need to step back a moment and evaluate why.   Do they really and truly take issue with his policies, or have they only listened to one-sided arguments about how they are flawed?  Do they honestly believe that he is lying about his birthplace, or have they just been sold on the idea of the lie in the first place?  What is their primary source of information?

Do they understand that if Obama were a white man with a name like "William" or "George", no one would have ever questioned his birthplace because it would have been obvious how ridiculous that accusation is in the first place?

I fear the way our nation is headed.  How easily large groups of people can be swayed by the opinions of a few biased pundits, granted access to a cable news channel.    In particular, those people who are little more than racists hiding in a suit. 

I will be the first to tell you that I was not a fan of George W. Bush.  I wasn't.  I objected to his policies, I took issue with his choices.  But on the morning of September 11, 2001, we were united.  We'd been attacked, and regardless of political affiliation, we were mad as hell.  We were proud of our President for his composure, moved by his words.  It didn't matter which side of the aisle you called home.

Yesterday, the reaction was not the same.  When we should have been united again, we seem ever divided.  And the man who spoke these words was accused of taking credit:

We give thanks for the men who carried out this operation, for they exemplify the professionalism, patriotism, and unparalleled courage of those who serve our country. And they are part of a generation that has borne the heaviest share of the burden since that September day

What, then, is the difference now, I ask? 

A decade of news coverage, with ever increasing viewership, that refers to itself as "Fair and Balanced". 

Just because you say something doesn't automatically make it so.

My irrationally optimistic hope is that this news will unite us again.  It seemed to me that those gathering outside the White House last night, cheering and singing had that sense of unity again.

If only all those sitting at home watching it unfold on cable news felt the same way.

Even if you may not like the President, he is your President.  He is our President.  All of us.  And the last thing we need to appear to the world right now is divided.  

You can disagree, but you cannot undermine the authority of the leader of our nation in the eyes of the world.  Period.

Our disagreements and the division they cause have more chance to un-do this country than any outside force ever will.  And that is far more terrifying to me than any terrorist ever will be.

1 comment:

  1. I particularly like those that like to slip in "Bush's" vision has finally been completed. And they try to make sure everyone knows where to give props to. Who cares, the man is dead....finally. We went to war in two countries, one which had nothing to do with Osama....just saying. 10 years of men and women losing their lives. 10 years of mutilation. 10 years of war ravished countries. The only thing that made me annoyed was that he skirted the issue of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. But overall a great speech. And can you imagine being the guy responsible for ordering the assassination of anyone...good or bad?

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