May 23, 2007
I haven’t written for these pages in quite some time, but as I watch the candidates, both Republican and Democratic, jockey for position in the presidential race, I’ve stirred.
Two events in particular have pushed me toward this keyboard. First, the fact that only Barack Obama has been assigned a Secret Service detail for protection in this large slate of candidates. Hillary Clinton has one, but that’s because she’s a former First Lady. The government has been rather circumspect as to the reasons for Sen. Obama’s detail, though they did compare him to a "rock star" in need of crowd control. I am loathE to accept that reason.
The only other presidential candidate to require such early protection was Jesse Jackson, when he ran in 1984 and 1988. Maybe he was a "rock star," too. Or, as I and many others suspect, there is still a large enough faction of racist Americans, who are so disturbed by the prospect of a black Commander-In-Chief, they would pull out their deer rifles and try to put a stop to the perceived threat.
The second event was the Republican presidential debate held on May 4. Former Governor Mitt Romney was tossed a soft-ball question asking what he "doesn’t" like about America, and he could find absolutely nothing to complain about. So presumably, in his eyes, everything is perfect. And presuming this, he would not strive to change anything were he elected president. The 43 million Americans without health insurance, or that racism and bigotry are still so pervasive in our society that the government has to assign a protection detail to Barack Obama doesn’t concern him in the least.
This being Utah, I must point out that Gov. Romney’s LDS faith is irrelevant to this conversation, and ask those reading this article not assume any connection between that fact and my comments.
During the same debate, three of the presidential hopefuls (Brownback, Huckabee, and Tancredo) averred by a raise of their hands that they did not believe in the science of evolution. Maybe this is not so odd when one takes into consideration that the current occupant of the White House doesn’t care much for the theory either.
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It forces me to wonder whether the unwillingness to embrace the science of evolution would also make it hard for these candidates to accept polar bears wearing sunscreen as evidence of global warming.
In closing I must point out, for those who missed it, that 84 percent of the French citizenry voted in their recent presidential election. (They elected the conservative, pro-American candidate, by the way.) While we were still munching our freedom fries in 2004, only 60 percent of Americans made it the polls. Lots of good reasons to get more involved this time around. It will be interesting to see how it goes.