I've never considered myself a political pundit. But I do believe that I try
to keep abreast of political happenings and, most of all, I believe myself
to be a pretty good judge of character. Thus far, I am a big fan of President
Watching him "perform" for the past year- he has not disappointed except in
areas where we differ. But then will any president please all of us all the time?
That's an impossibility. But in so many areas of crisis - in my opinion, he is
just what our nation needed in very trying times. I find him to be "genuine,"
hard-working, caring, and intelligent.
I am disappointed in many of the oped offerings where the writers seem to
think that only they know the answers to our countries woes, and in their
opinion, President Obama is not addressing them correctly. What chutzpah!
Until we are privy to all the information the President gets through his Cabinet
and advisers - until we can imagine what it means to walk in his shoes, I
think we should think twice before voicing our negative criticisms.
For me- the problems confronting a president are often immense and never
so much so as they were for this young newly-elected president at the beginning
of his term -the crash of Wall Street and the Banking institutions, the crumbling
of the Housing Industry, the financial problems of the Auto Industry, the loss of
millions of jobs and the recession which followed --plus trying to end two unpopular
wars. I believe that any ONE of these problems would have been more than
enough for any new president to face. And yet, this young president and his
advisers IMMEDIATELY sat down to work to try to solve ALL of them - one at a
And along the way - not all were grateful for their solutions which to me were
amazing. He was criticized for bailing out Wall Street. What would the naysayers
have done? Probably nothing. I believe that he tried to help the millions of people
who were facing foreclosure of their homes -but whether those attempts were
successful I really don't know. He lent money to the three Auto industries who
were in financial trouble- thus giving them and their workers a much needed
infusion of money for employee salaries and health care. A stimulus package
was an attempt to provide jobs for those who lost them. I believe some of the
states getting this money failed to use it wisely. No surprise.
There was criticism re the amounts of money being doled out in these attempts
to solve the horrendous problems our nation was facing --and probably sadly
by the Republicans who were probably largely responsible for the problems in
the first place since they were at the helm for the past 8 years. If there were
other workable solutions - I don't believe anyone else had them or voiced them.
These were the same Republicans who a new president made it a point to ask
them to work with him in a bipartisan way. If they might have entertained the
idea, it certainly didn't last very long. I can't believe that I ever was a Republican.
Though I share some of their moral values, I have since found that there are many
areas in which I profoundly differ with their beliefs and policies. Besides failing
to try to work with the new president, I am most saddened by their general lack of
concern for the environment and animal suffering. For me Right to Life also means
being concerned with the life of our animals and our planet but this, in my opinion,
is not even on their agenda.
So many have criticized the President for sending more troops to Afghanistan. I
truly believe he would have liked nothing better than to bring our soldiers home
immediately. But then he realized through his advisors that an immediate
withdrawal from a country ruled by a corrupt Karzai government would have
meant the re-emergence of either the Taliban or Al-queda or both - putting
our nation at risk. But he has given Karzai notice - Afghanistan is not
a protectorate of the US. It is time that they learned to protect themselves.
Today I got an e-mail response from First Lady Michele Obama re my concern
of the often cruel practices of the slaughterhouses where some of the poor
animals go through the slaughter line alive. No humane society should allow
this and sadly we don't always measure up.
I wrote to her instead of the President because I read somewhere that the
President gets 10,000 letters a day and only a handful are given to him to read
daily. Understandable. However, I was grateful for a response. I would also
like to tell her that I was disappointed that the President one day ordered
hamburgers for his staff. He obviously is unaware that animals are a great
source of methane gas - a green house gas which many intellectuals have said
is more detrimental to Global warming than gas-guzzling cars and factory-spewing
I would also like to tell the Obamas that I was so disappointed to read that they
and their children ate foie gras while in France. I don't know if they realize
that the force-feeding of geese is a horrible cruelty to these poor geese. I
would hope next time they would forego a dish which the French people
should not be proud of and hopefully one day will work to halt its production.
Even Mayor Daley of Chicago has little compassion for the geese since he made
sure to overturn the hard-won ordinance of a compassionate legislator to ban
it from the restaurants in Chicago.
While- as I wrote earlier I don't agree with the President on all counts, I believe
that he is just what our country needs. My prayer is that God will give him
the strength to continue in this often thankless job of being a President. My
prayer is that the Republicans will learn the true meaning of bi-partisanship
so that our country can move forward in the best possible way. I also pray that
more of them will learn to respect the animals and the environment. These are not
for us to exploit if we are a truly compassionate, caring people.