"The welfare of humanity is always the alibi of tyrants" - Albert Camus

Monday, May 24, 2010

Whatever Happened to America First?

There are certain unwritten rules in life.  You do not double cross your own family is an important one of them.  That rule applies not just to individuals but also in a larger sense to society and governments.  Honor, patriotism, and loyalty demands that we are unified against any attacks on our sovereign policies with few exceptions in extreme cases such as post World War II denouncement of the Holocaust by the German people.  Well, the rule applied in a truly universal way, that is until the Obama administration had to be the first to break it. 

We are, by now, used to the near constant apologies of the President and criticism of his predecessors while abroad.  Cutting the U.S. down to size and admonishing our friends while directly or indirectly elevating the status of the world's dictators/bullies is this administration's demented way of changing the 'negative image' of the U.S. abroad.  The examples of minimizing American exceptionalism while blaming the U.S. for the world's ills are too numerous to count.  Mr. Obama dazzled ecstatic world citizens on every single continent with citations of the offenses against international goodwill and humanity committed by the nation he leads.  The more memorable ones include his apologies in France for our past arrogance and dismissiveness/derisiveness towards Europe, failure to tie our progress to that of Latin America at the OAS, moral responsibility of using the atom bomb while in Prague, and placing the responsibility for financial woes of the world squarely on our own shoulders while in London.  And that is just a few of the dozens of unprecedented examples! 

As bad as criticizing the U.S. while abroad may sound, a new line was crossed recently.  First, high ranking administration official criticized the the new Arizona law passed to enforce existing federal laws against illegal immigration while meeting with the Chinese last week.  Yes, the Chinese - who are not ranked far ahead of the North Koreans or the Cubans when it comes to human rights!  As if that wasn't bad enough, earlier past week, President Obama reiterated the same criticism while meeting with President Calderon of Mexico (whose country's immigration laws are a lot more stringent than ours - both on paper and in enforcement) at the White House last Wednesday.  This time around, criticism came indirectly - by way of the President's silence while standing next to a foreign head of state who was openly promoting an ongoing, aggressive, illegal, and often violent invasion of America. To add insult to injury, President Calderon, while addressing the U.S. Congress, admonished the Arizona law as being anti-human rights and unworthy of the United States.  On multiple occasions, he received enthusiastic standing ovation from the Democrats in his audience. 

Although it is good to see that Obama is not the only ungracious, unpresidential head of state who, like a dinner guest who criticizes the food, has a thing or two to learn about presidential decorum while visiting another country, one cannot help but stop and wonder whatever happened to the unwritten rule of not criticizing your own, especially on your own soil? 

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