A quick review of my earlier post is in order. In it I mentioned some of the reasons I was disappointed in the performance of President Obama to date. Unlike the yahoos who claim he’s a commie trying to turn the nation into a socialist haven, I expressed my concern, if not dismay, that he had not taken stronger steps to carry out his promises and his promise that those of us who voted for him saw as an escape from the mistaken policies of the past eight years under ‘Dubya”.

           In reality he has significant accomplishments in less than two years on the job. I won’t make a comparison between him and prior Presidents in that regard, at least not for this post. An article on Slate magazine on line adopts a view of Obama’s failures based not on legislation passed but rather how he has addressed some of the more contentious issues that have drawn outspoken, often rash, ill-considered commentary, especially, but not exclusively, from conservatives.

           The article highlights three of these issues: immigration, gay marriage, and the inaccurately termed Ground Zero Mosque. The author, Jacob Weisberg, declares Obama’s reluctance to make unequivocal statements on these issues to be moral cowardice. Here is a link to that article.     http://www.slate.com/id/2266152/

                Weisberg’s case is pretty convincing. But playing devil’s advocate I offer another explanation for this reluctance. The tone of political rhetoric has become undeniably shrill. I point no fingers, simply offer an observation. The internet is rife with all manner of wild accusations, unfounded allegations and illogical, thoughtless opinions. But enough about my blog. (A little humor there, I need to lighten my tone more often)

          Perhaps Obama is averse to contributing to this babel. To add his voice to to those strident declamations, even when expressed in terms appealing to good moral sense, may not be fruitful. Indeed, given the antagonism toward Obama from many quarters his message may not even be heard. At worst it could prove to be more divisive.

                But ultimately I side with moral cowardice. Any practical reasons that exist to speak temperately are outweighed by the need for moral clarity. President Obama has spoken often of his ideals in the abstract. It is now time to apply them to specific instances crying out for the nation’s elected leader to focus on what is right and what is wrong.

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