Djcnor’s Weblog

Don’t Forget the Submarine

Posted on: March 20, 2009

I’ve enjoyed watching the clips of Obama on the Tonight Show. There are some Americans who will be uncomfortable with a President who is clearly human, recognizes that there are areas in which he may actually fall below the average (which is really what that Special Olympics remark was all about), and is determined to do what he can to remain that way, but I’m not one of them. I also want to complement Michelle Obama on her efforts in that respect.

The idea of a President who appreciates the ironic humor of being the President, yet over-ruled several times a day by the Secret Service, gives me confidence in his sense of proportion. He doesn’t feel the need to constantly use his power just to remind others and himself that he has it. He’s able to choose his battles and to give in with good humor when a battle’s not worth fighting. How refreshing!

The idea of a First Lady who jokes about the trappings of being President builds a picture of normal domestic relations. That joke about the Presidential motercade including an ambulance, a dog sled, a caboose, a submarine is just the kind of irreverent joke I would make.

In my humble opinion, the ordinary people of the world have been giving authority figures, be they economic, or law enforcement, or political, or whatever type of authority (aside from academic authorities who I think, with all the bias of being an academic myself, have earned any reverence they get)  considerably more reverence than is healthy. I’ve enjoyed watching the French from across the channel. The French irreverence toward authority is something to shake your head in wonder at. And yet, it works. The country continues to operate and even to excel in areas like healthcare and productivity per hours worked 

http://www.forbes.com/2005/03/22/cx_da_0322topnews_print.html

http://www.photius.com/rankings/healthranks.html 

and maintain a quality of life almost exactly equal to that of the US despite it’s 6 week vacations.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_Development_Index

OK, maybe that’s partly because of the quality of French food, but Michelle is working on that. She’s planting a vegetable garden with the idea of using it to educate school children about eating well (not to mention the joys of gardening) in hopes that they’ll take what they learn back home and educate their parents.

Picture a First Lady in overalls with dirty knees and garden clogs. Don’t you just have to love it?

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2 Responses to "Don’t Forget the Submarine"

He has hurt many families in America. He needs to say he is sorry in the public, not to an organization.

In addition, someone who claims to have experienced prejudice and stereotypes throughout life, and has written about them in great detail,
should be more sensitive and refined from life’s lessons.

Furthermore, Obama claimed he was going to have the world think ‘highly’ of America again. Will this joke help?

For someone who spoke of equality as a creed. Does this joke match that philosophy?

For someone that said he would stand for all people. Does this stand up for those that participate in the special
Olympics?

The fact is Obama claimed a higher standard. To much is given, much is required.

Obama has just showed us that ‘yes we can’ destroy what a campaign stands for with a single joke.

During the campaign for the White House in 2008, the media criticized Palin for being ‘common,’ ‘not-polished,’ ‘not-compassionate’ and ‘not presidential.’ However, compare Sarah Palins attitude in this video created three weeks ago for the Special Olympics in Boise, Idaho.

You decide the more ‘presidential’ among them:

http://tinyurl.com/ccz6nj

No, he has not. The response of those involved in the Special Olympics has been characterized with the good humor that you seem to lack. For example, the winner, who happens to have had several 300 games, challenged Obama to a match in the White House. Those involved in the Special Olympics know that equality does not mean the denial of differences but instead equal opportunity to make the most of whatever talents and capabilities an individual has. Obama, having recognized that he is a fairly miserable bowler, became President instead. Special Olympians also know that actions speak louder than words and that Obama’s policies and his very being President as a black man are more likely to further the aim of helping people think beyond stereotypes, such as stereotypes of Special Olympics participants, than anything that has happened in a long time. Yes, we hold him to a high standard, but no an inhuman one. He is human. He will make mistakes. He gets away with such a minor gaffe because of the vast weight of his other compassionate actions and statements. Palin wouldn not because of her lack of other compassionate acts and statements.

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Djcnor’s Weblog

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