Obama: The Myth vs. the Man
Messiah, secret Muslim, Harvard elitist, bipartisan, transparent, defender of women’s rights, community organizer, Communist, Fascist, Capitalist, Kenyan, African American, celebrity, deserving Nobel Peace Prize recipient, America hater, and the list goes on. All of these terms have been used to describe President Barack Obama by both the right and the left. There is no constructive researching anymore to find out if these accusations are valid, and beliefs are relegated to easy to remember catchphrases regurgitated by mainstream media sources and the brainwashed masses they influence. The view of what a leader should be has morphed as society has become more obsessed with celebrity culture and small, superficial differences between candidates instead of being concerned with deeper questions pertaining to government’s involvement in various levels of our lives.
All of the descriptions of the president add this aura of mystery that is alluring to his base and frightening to those who oppose him, but do they do anything but distract from his actual policies as commander in chief? The focus on the mystique of Barack Obama has elevated him to a savior by some and the most diabolical super-villain to overtake the presidency ever by others. However, when we apply these labels to a man, we distort what he truly is---a human, more specifically a politician. The left have this heroic view of him as some prince on a white horse coming to save us from Bush and Cheney and give free birth control to everyone that has been helped by his articulate but empty rhetoric. The right is no better, and has a false image of him being some secret Muslim Manchurian candidate bent on overthrowing the US while simultaneously not being tough enough on terrorism (despite the frequent use of drones to kill innocent people remotely in Syria, Libya, and Pakistan). This attack from the right only helps him in the eyes of those more independent minded voter who recognize the extreme hatred, and it even appears as if they are deliberately trying to lose this election with their illogical approach to criticizing Obama. Now, I am no fan of the president, but people on the limited sides we are told all Americans fall into are forgetting that at the end of the day he is a man who has no super powers, and is probably more plain selfish than outright evil. The office of the presidency does not grant greater intellectual ability or reasoning skills, just greater power to enforce one’s own morals.
When the focus of the people is placed on imaginary descriptions of a leader, people forget that he is really just some really well connected politician trying to push along his ideology. He is not trying to stand up for women’s rights or infiltrate the White House and force us into Sharia Law. While I agree that he is using the force of the State to do things that are morally wrong like making more wars and sending drones to kill people in Pakistan, there needs to be a focus on his policies and actions, not some contrived idea of who he is. He’s a guy, who is self-serving like all humans, and we need to be realistic when discussing the reasons for supporting or opposing him. He can’t control the gas prices or force states to accept gay marriage, but he can order drone strikes without congressional approval in places like Pakistan and Syria.
Shouldn’t we pay more attention to what he is actually doing instead of what people think he is doing, has done, or is going to do? Also, shouldn’t we base our opinions on what we actually know about the man, not what prejudice or idolatry tells us? He is, above all other occupations and terms, a politician. You know, one of those egotistic types who pander to their base with lies and false assurances that they will uphold whatever moral standard they believe in once they are elected and can just have the power. In other words, a liar who gets huge amounts of money from people by tricking them, and then uses their power to abuse those with whom they disagree. Politicians are some of the most reviled people in the country, and yet simultaneously some of the most revered. Why is this juxtaposition pervading society and more importantly, how do they get away with it? It goes back to the concept of idealizing a human above other humans based on their occupation. It is that eons old concept that we need leaders to take care of us and tell us how to live and protect us from the bad guys, and gee if we can just get the right guy in there, it ‘Merica be heaven on earth! I mean, how would we survive without someone to rule over us?! You’d think we are afraid of freedom or something.
Looking back at history, monarchs and emperors told the people they were appointed by God and the people believed the leaders. We scoff at this idea nowadays, but it hasn’t changed much. We have replaced nobility with celebrity and God with the State. We elevate presidents, congressmen, various department czars, lawyers, cops, scientists, or anyone else claiming to be an “expert” above ourselves and others, often without questioning their authority or credibility. While it is important to have professionals that have experience on subjects we know less about, it is antithetical to freedom to give professional liars power over the people. It is not a matter of getting the right people elected in a power structure that has failed and continues to fail those who put their faith in it. It comes down to who we believe should have authority over our lives; should it be us or should it be some guy (whose occupation is liar) that the 51% elect based on emotion to take away the rights of the 49%?
Now, I am not trying to paint all politicians with the same brush, but it is common sense that those who seek power are more likely to be corrupt and only become more corrupt as a result of that power. Until we believe in our own abilities to lead our own lives instead of depending on a lawmaker to do it for us, we will never be free. I used Obama as the most obvious example as he is one of the most polarizing presidents thus far, but this can be applied to any person that the uninformed elevate to the status of Messiah/Satan based on what television or their church or the various media outlets tell them. It is only through researching and reading and questioning that we can find the virtue or lack thereof in any given politician who wants to rule over us. A return to logical thinking is in order for the people of this country as blind faith has served none of us well. I don’t want to hear your opinion about Obama or Romney or Ron Paul unless you can give me some evidence to prove your point, and this goes for republibrats and democons. Cut the bullshit, and give me the truth; unadulterated, well researched, and provable.