Itís funny, but just when I think thereís simply no possible way to become more frustrated with our current state of affairs here in good old America, somebody (seemingly) goes out of their way to prove me wrong. Whether itís a politician Ė on either side of the fence Ė a celebrity-turned-politician (the worst kind) or simply people in general, it seems this reporter canít get a break from the inane lately.
Then again, maybe itís just this lousy weather weíve been having.
Regardless, I suppose thatís what youíll have when you combine a widespread lack of common sense, our bizarre tendency for short-term memory loss and the almost unbelievable string of events which have unfolded in the last decade or so (not to mention Mother Nature).
Lately, I seem to have this tendency to react to certain happenings with an almost laughable blend of disbelief, anger and, as stated, frustration. It doesnít really matter whatís at issue Ė politics, religion, war, peace (or lack thereof), the environment, gun control, socialism, fascism, the legalization of marijuana, gay rights, abortion, the upcoming 2012 election, the list goes on and on.
Iím more than a little fed up with all of it, personally speaking. Why, you ask? Because a little common sense every once in awhile would Ė more than anything Ė go a long way toward putting this country back on track. I know that sounds a tad simplistic, but a little more rational thinking on our part really wouldnít hurt anyone, now would it?
Unfortunately, I have a feeling that I shouldnít hold my breath at this point. Asking certain segments of our American populace to rely on something as simple as common sense Ė rather than their (oftentimes) misguided bigotry, complete disregard for intelligent discussion or any kind of compromise whatsoever Ė is probably a lost cause.
My apologies if I seem a little bitter, but this is something thatís been bothering me for a couple of weeks now. I suppose I could blame it on ď30 SecondsĒ (if youíre a regular reader of The Evening Sunís reader reaction column you know exactly what I mean), which Iíve always been completely addicted to (even before I began writing for our hometown daily), but I know better.
Actually, whatís really got me in this little funk is the continued insistence by certain individuals that our current president wasnít born here in the United States, particularly businessman and television personality Donald Trump. You know, the whole ďbirtherĒ issue.
Now I donít know about you, but my memory isnít all that short. In fact, I remember quite well that Mr. Trump has pulled this stunt before a time or two. He fakes a bid at the presidency in order to garner publicity before dropping out at the last minute. My guess is that heís probably doing it this time around for no other reason than to boost ratings for ďThe Apprentice,Ē a show I can proudly say Iíve never seen.
Yes, even ďThe DonaldĒ has jumped on the birther wagon, much to my dismay. Not because I care one way or the other what he thinks Ė I donít Ė simply because Iím tired of hearing about an issue that is complete, utter nonsense.
News flash people, Barack Obama was born in Hawaii on Aug. 4, 1961. I know that sounds a little far-fetched but, believe me, itís absolutely true. And no, I donít care if I ever see his birth certificate, Iím willing to give the guy the benefit of the doubt. And how can I be so certain of our commander-in-chiefís nationality? Itís simple really Ė Iím fairly certain (and by fairly I mean 100 percent) that the extreme right-wingers out there wouldíve never let the man anywhere near the White House if he were really born in Kenya. Case closed.
And while Iím not going to go so far as to say that doubting our presidentís birthplace is unpatriotic, calling him a terrorist, an anti-American and a socialist dictator most certainly is. Those who continue to do so should be ashamed of themselves. Like the guy or not, heís still our president and he deserves a little respect.
On that note, Iíll be the first to admit that I wasnít a big fan of George W. Bush during his presidency, yet I still had some measure of respect for the man. Iím even going to go out on a limb here and guess Ė just guess, mind you Ė that being president of the United States of America is probably not the easiest job in the world.
So if you disagree with Obamaís policies, his service to our country during his first term or even his vacation schedule, thatís perfectly fine, you have every right to do so. My advice? Save it for the 2012 election and go out and vote for someone else. Thatís American. Name-calling and spreading lies about the man isnít. In fact, thatís just childish.
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