President Obama in his sixth year as president has faced a barrage of challenges and crises that no president before him has faced. The anti-Obama crusade that includes propaganda, conspiracy theories, blatant disrespect and hatred has made the president’s job more difficult than any of his predecessors. With the relentless opposition to everything he does and the many crises he has faced, it is remarkable that he is still in the White House and is still performing his presidential duties effectively.
Few presidents have faced the challenges and crises that President Obama has faced. Most presidents during their term in office faced one or two major challenges or crises. For Lincoln it was the civil war and the question of slavery. For Roosevelt (FDR), it was the Great Depression. Then there were the presidents who were in office during both world wars and the Vietnam War. These presidents did not face the constant challenges and crises throughout their presidency like President Obama has. Furthermore, they did not face a relentless crusade that demonized and blatantly disrespected them.
When you compare the challenges, crises, and personal attacks that President Obama encountered with those of his predecessors, you realize that he has had to perform his duties in a much tougher and stressful environment. You also realize that he has encountered a broader set of problems than his predecessors have. The president’s problems are so broad that they could be classified into three categories: 1) those that he inherited, 2) those that are manufactured by right-wing politicians and media, and 3) those that are foreign conflicts.
The inherited problems – these include the economy hitting rock bottom, the Iraq and Afghanistan war, the hunt for Osama bin-Laden, a high unemployment rate, and the general neglect of domestic issues. To the president’s credit, he has been successful in dealing with these problems.
The manufactured problems – include the relentless anti-Obama crusade that includes propaganda, disrespect, lies, conspiracy theories, attempts to link the president to so-called scandals, and the effort to disparage the president himself. None of the manufactured problems has achieved their goal of damaging the president.
The foreign conflicts or crises – include the conflict in Syria, the Benghazi attack on the US Embassy in Libya, Russia’s destabilization and annexation efforts of Crimea and the Ukraine, The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), and the ongoing Israeli Palestinian conflict. The president’s approach in dealing with these crises is one that is deliberative and not to escalate the situation by military intervention.
If you listen to President Obama’s opponents and their message that the president is taking America down the wrong path, you would believe them if you were not aware of the president’s accomplishments. You would also be inclined to believe the lies that the president is incompetent, weak, un-American, and in over his head. The incompetence label is one that the GOP politicians are fond of making. Even Jeb Bush who Republicans would like to see run as the 2016 presidential candidate exposed his leadership abilities when he recently called President Obama incompetent.
It is incomprehensible that the GOP has spent six years on their anti-Obama crusade instead of using this time to help make life better for Americans. It is also incomprehensible that with their record of nonperformance and low approval rating for the GOP Congress, that the GOP is favored to gain control of the Senate in the November midterm election this Tuesday.
If you are inclined to believe the flawed messages that are part of the anti-Obama crusade and specifically the labeling of the president as incompetent, then ask yourself the following questions:
• If President Obama is incompetent how is it that he has an approval rating that is twice that of the GOP Congress and what does that make the GOP?
• How is he incompetent when he saved the economy without the help of the GOP?
• How is he incompetent when he made the courageous decision that eliminated America’s public enemy number one – Osama Bin Laden?
• How is he incompetent when he implemented the Affordable Care Act that provides health insurance to millions of Americans who were previously uninsured and who were unable to get insurance because of preexisting conditions.
• How is he incompetent when he has ended the Iraq War and scaled down the Afghanistan War?
• How is he incompetent when he has imposed effective sanctions against Russia in their attempt to annex Crimea and the Ukraine?
The only conclusion that can be drawn from the GOP’s blatant distortion of Barack Obama’s presidency is his race. None of his predecessors (including the one he took over from) even those that were not popular were labeled as incompetent, lazy, weak, un-American, unpatriotic, and in over his head. Incidentally, these labels are classic stereotypes that black employees in corporate companies are well familiar with. It is also well known that it is easier to blame, disparage, and disrespect blacks than whites.
If the GOP thinks that people do not know the game they are playing then perhaps they are really naïve. Either the GOP is out of touch with life in America or they are indeed naïve why they have failed to put out a coherent message that is appealing to all Americans – especially blacks and Hispanics. The GOP needs to start demonstrating some real leadership that is principled, ethical, and fair. How are they going to be competitive in future elections if they continue their politics of demonizing their opponents?
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