Sunday, January 18, 2009

Obama Nation

Don't get me wrong. I liked Barack Obama for President from way before he ever declared his candadicy. WAY before. I was too sick last year to work for his campaign although I thought about trying. I donated money... a small amount of money (ok, $10), even as I was broke and facing astronomical medical bills that I did not know how I was going to pay. I talked about him to whoever would listen; I debated friends who did not see the same things in him that I did; I explained to supporters why those that didn't like him did not (I took the time to really talk to McCain supporters and understand their point of view... and I got it, even as I did not agree), and helped his supporters understand the divide in this country. While believing in him whole heartedly.

I was happy when he took Sarah Palin's kids off of the political table. Espousing exactly what I believe... that except if they played an active role in the campaign as a consenting teenager or adult, they should be left alone.

And I respected him. I still do.

The only thing that I ask of Mr. Obama is not to disappoint me. Not that I'm sure he won't endorse, or at least compromise on, public policy that I don't necessarily agree with. That's a given. But what I desperately don't want is him to pull a Bill Clinton. "I did not have sex with that woman." And with that phrase, rather than 'it's a personal matter and none of your business,' Mr. Clinton brought our government to a halt for over a year during the Impeachment process. I didn't and don't care who he was having affairs with. I don't care if Obama has affairs or not. It's a personal matter and none of my business. But all I ask is that Mr. Obama not disappoint me in a similar matter. Bringing family business out into public.

(Thank you Mrs. G at Derfwad Manor, for I stole your image.)

Well, he's not yet in office, and I'm already disappointed. I'm talking about the open letter that he wrote to his daughters and published in Parade Magazine across this country. Well stated. Eloquent. Classic Obama.

Am I the only one who has a problem with this? Mr. Obama himself stated that children should be kept out of the process. His children have just endured a move away from their home and friends, and started living life in a fishbowl. It wouldn't matter if the press leaves them alone or not, because wherever they go, whoever they try to befriend at their new schools, they will be separate. Parents will encourage their kids to be friends with his kids for the sake of the connection and/or bragging rights. Imagine taking your children to the White House for a playdate!

So why is Barack Obama publishing that letter in a public forum now? He himself is exploiting his children immediately before his inaugaration! Not unforgivable, but it makes me pause for thought. He has invited the press directly into his children's lives. They are too young to understand what he has done, or understand the ramifications.

I think the letter is beautiful, but it should have been kept private for his daughters eyes, or kept to be included in his memoirs after his Presidency is over. For when the children are older and will understand what he is saying. At their current ages, they don't get it anyway. They surely don't have the maturity or experience to comprehend what he is saying. Sure, they will probably be excited, and will feel real pleasure in pleasing their parents. But it is wrong. So wrong.

Leave the kids out of it Mr. Obama. You've said this yourself. Leave your children out of the spotlight. Let them have a small opportunity to be kids. Don't open the door up wider for the press to speculate and talk about them.

Please, Mr. Obama, I could not be more excited about your Presidency. I supported you before the election, and the thought of you taking the Oath in only 36 hours brings me to tears. Tears of happiness. Please don't disappoint me again.


Anonymous said...

thank you for saying what I could not put into words..

Adele said...

I disagree with you. That letter may have been addressed to his girls, but it was written to Ian and all the other children in America. I hope that the letter is printed out and shared with all school children. I certainly plan to share it with my classroom. It's an inspiring letter written in simple language...language even my students should be able to comprehend. Maybe you have to be a parent to understand why he wrote it.



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