And no, I am not referring to the "Obama girl", in case you're wondering.
Instead, I refer to his recent visit to Georgetown University, in which he asked that a symbol representing the name of Jesus be covered up for the duration of the speech. Despite this story that states that it wasn't just the name of Jesus being covered up, to even ask a Catholic university to cover up its religious symbols - particularly those related to its founder - is offensive. As much as I hate to use that word because it is overused, I still can't think of a more approriate word in this instance. Imagine Obama asking a synagogue to cover up its Stars of David or its menorahs or to ask a Muslim group to cover up its symbols while he gave a speech and see if those groups don't likewise rise up in protest.
The reason I titled this blog entry "Obama's 'Bare Breast of Justice' moment" is because it reminds me very much of the John Ashcroft story from 2002, in which he had the bare breasted statue of justice hidden behind a curtain. Most stories state that he was simply tired of photographers making concentrated efforts to have that statue in the background whenever they photographed him. Even so, why not simply move to another location whenever he had press conferences so that the problematic breast wouldn't be in the background?
And the same with Obama in Georgetown: Why not have the press conference in another location where those antagonizing symbols won't hover in the background teasing him as he spoke? Being that Ashcroft and Obama are very visible public figures, having the bare breasts of statues of justice or to have a religions' symbols covered up can only be taken in the wrong way, and given their level of education along with their length of experience in the public eye, it's amazing that this didn't occur to them. However, if they knew it would be problematic and did it anyway, then this would be worse, because it would then suggest an arrogance that a public official shouldn't have if they are to represent the people. So - this means that Ashcroft and Obama are either appalingly clueless or stupidly arrogant, and I don't know which would be worse.
As bad as it was for Obama to ask Georgetown to cover up its symbols, it was even worse for them to comply! The university should have offered to move the press conference to another location - because a sitting American president has no right to ask a religious faith to cover up its symbols while he's present. This could easily be made into an argument of the State interfering with the matters of the Church, and if it's wrong to breach that wall of separation in one way, then it's wrong going the other way as well. This was poorly handled by all parties involved.
I wish I could believe that this won't happen again, but I'm pretty sure that it will.
Okay, that's it. Whoever is doing the vetting for President Obama needs to be fired. What kind of dumbass picks three prochoice Catholics to be the ambassador to the Vatican? I mean, freakin' Caroline Kennedy??? What the hell, man? And why is it that Obama can bow to a sheik, but not have the decency to find a prolifer to be an ambassador to the Vatican? Geez!
Before you start bashing on the Vatican about turning down Kennedy for the ambassadorship, consider that she's only available for the position because her state turned her down for the senate seat. So she's been dissed twice now (she's probably saying to herself right now, "Where's the love, man?"). And before you start saying that the Vatican turned down Kennedy because she's a woman, I say pfft! The previous ambassador the the Vatican was a woman!
The Vatican is entirely within its rights to accept only those candidates whose views are consistent with its teachings. Rather than cite the Vatican for its supposed "intolerance", criticism instead rightly belongs to the Obama administration for its lack of respect to nominate candidates that will not offend the Vatican. This is not rocket science, after all.
Also consider that if Obama had gone through as much trouble finding a suitable candidate to represent the U.S. to the Vatican as he went through finding a "First Dog", then this issue would have been settled a long time ago with no controversy. Still, that dog better watch out for himself. For all he knows, he's going to be the Obama administration's nominee as ambassador to the cat kingdom.
Funny thing. When me and the family were watching the details of that sea captain being rescued from those pirates yesterday, it didn't take long for one of us to say "How long do you think before some left-winger comes roaring in to the pirates' defense?" Another of us said: "Don't call them 'pirates'! They are 'independently operating seafarers'!" The left-wingers among us wondered aloud if more criticizing of Obama was about to ensue. Our family runs the gamut in regards to political views, so family gatherings are always fun - and I mean that sincerely. We may have discussions, but we are always civil.
Anyway, usually after such discussions, I've been asked why I don't just call myself liberal or conservative instead of trying to straddle a line in between the two. I've tried to do that before, but I just can't seem to come up with a good enough explanation that will satisfy everyone, but I'll try again anyway. For one, I am not straddling any line, sitting on any fence, nor seeking any "middle path" - far from it. My views are my views, and they happen to fall on both sides of the political spectrum. Being against abortion is considered a conservative view and being against the death penalty is considered a liberal view - how could I possibly have a middle ground between those views when they cover different issues? It's like saying there's a middle ground between gun control and "baggy pants" laws; in other words, it's apples and oranges. I can't explain it any better than that.
Next, I can't call myself liberal until being liberal means being 100% prolife (and that means being opposed to legalized euthanasia and the death penalty as well as legalized abortion). If liberals can't come to the defense of the ultimate in defenselessness among us, then it puts the lie to the usual belief that being liberal means coming to the defense of the little guy. Simple as that. Truely, I can't understand why this is so hard to understand. Belief in the sacredness of all life should, in the eyes of what I think all liberals should believe, be above all political ideologies, social experimentations, economic theories, Frankensteinian scientific experiments, medical flights of fancy, or any other groups or philosophies that have utilitarian views towards human life and its value.
All of the inhumane atrocities of human history have been because the leaders or certain groups of people didn't take the full humanity of other groups of people into account. I shouldn't have to provide some historical examples of what I am referring, but I think I do: the Holocaust and slavery. Any time one person or group in a position of influence decides that they are above the rest of us or that a group of people are beneath them, then they are headed down the path that has no good end in sight. So with that, why do we think that, in our day and age, we are exempt from committing inhumane atrocities ourselves? A saying about pride and falling comes to mind.
I categorize legalized abortion as an atrocity. An unborn human dies every time in an abortion. Period. Anyone that denies this denies logic, reason, and scientific fact, so I honestly don't get the "yes, but..." that usually follows when I make that statement. And it pains me to think that liberal Democrats are legalized abortions' most ardent supporters, and I wonder what the hell for. How do they manage to leave out a whole group of people whenever they rush to the defense of those that the rest of us would shun? In other words, if you're going to be "bleeding heart", then it needs to bleed for everyone.
In case you think that I don't have my gripes about conservatives, then just sit tight a second - I'm about to get to that.
My main gripes about conservatives is that they seem to believe that the free market will solve all. Before I continue, let me state here that I am no Communist. I do NOT support a Statist point of view in which the State controls all. Far, far from it. However, many free-market conservatives seem to believe that there are no scam artists out there to make a quick buck no matter what despicable thing they do to get it. Not all of them are as easy to spot as an e-mail from a Nigerian banker's widow or a phone call telling you that your car's warranty is about to expire. Sometimes they come disguised with initials such as AIG. Just ask the many millions of Americans whose retirement plans have been wiped out because of the chicanery of people in suits who were supposed to be managing our finances.
Another avenue rife with potential abuse are insurances. You can go years faithfully paying your insurance, but it won't be until you actually need it to find out what it actually will cover. Then you find out that it won't cover X because Y happened, and it was spelled out in the fine print that stated "certain (unspecified) fees apply". The most recent of this cycle of economic chicanery has been the medical industry and health insurance. I swear, it's a MUPM (Mutually Assured Profit Margin) when doctors, hospitals, and health insurances work on the final bill that you will pay so that you pay for more of it.
And how, I ask, will socialized medicine help? The only people I see benefiting from a national health care program are the politicians. In essence, they won't wipe out the MUPM vicious circle, they'll only get themselves included in that circle so that they too, benefit. And then we'll really be SoL (S**t outta Luck). No, as chaotic as our present system is, at least it makes it harder for these various groups to pool together to make things even worse for us. The solution will not come from the government in the form of socialized medicine.
What we need from the government is to speak for us like it's supposed to. THAT'S its role - to speak for us against the financial barons of the various industries that put profit above all else. In order for the free market to be a fair market, a strong government is necessary to keep them on the straight and narrow. Otherwise, the free market will go down the path of putting profit above all else, thus justifying various economic absurdities such as the American sales of 90% of the weaponry that the Mexican drug cartels use. Without our representatives, we are voiceless. When our representatives sell out on us to these financial barons, then we lose the only defense we have against these people. No, for the government to put themselves in the free market only makes them a player in it where they are more tempted to put their own profits above serving our needs; and when that happens, then we're REALLY SoL.
Conservatives want smaller government, and yet too small a government is useless. We need its voice and our representatives to speak for us. I can't call myself a conservative until conservatives understand the limits of a free market and the potentials of abuse. I also want to see how they plan to curb such abuses if "self-policing" doesn't work. People who work hard all their lives to settle comfortably into retirement shouldn't have to worry about the economic greed and stupidity of CEOs who can't control themselves around other peoples' money.
Nope, I am neither liberal or conservative. I am comfortable right where I am at.
Apparently, Minnesota's 2008 election is still going on. I really don't know why they just don't have a runoff election like every other state in the union has whenever the final results are too close to call. I think it was the late George Carlin who once said that a judge is nothing but a lawyer in a robe, and that should scare anybody. All the more reason to take this out of the courts' hands and back into the hands of the people that the eventual winner will be representing. In that light, since the representative is going to be making decisions that's going to affect the lives of his constituents, shouldn't they have a say in who represents them? Maybe it's just me.
I'm neither liberal Democrat nor conservative Republican; nor do I fall in between the two extremes as a "moderate", because I take stands rather than simply find a middle ground. My views depend upon the issue, so the only way to describe someone who is against both legalized abortion and the death penalty is as an independent. So whether you're liberal, conservative. or any of the points between, there's something for you to like -and not like. And there's other things to see as well. I generally post about 2 to 3 times a week. If I am gone for a certain amount of time, I'll say when I'm leaving, and when I expect to be back. Welcome!
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