Last Friday’s blog discussed the recent incident involving the Cambridge professor, Mr. Gates and the police officer who arrested him, Sgt. Crowley. The morning that I wrote that was the same day in which several police departments held a National news conference that afternoon. In that news conference, the police announced that they were solidly and unanimously in support of Sgt. Crowley and his actions. It was only then, last Friday afternoon, that President Obama started to rethink the foolishness of his prior press conference in which he described the police officer’s actions as “stupid.”  As our president often tends to do however, once he realized that the majority of folks in our country were not siding with him and his friend Mr. Gates, he began to backpedal and rephrase his earlier statement by saying that he could “have calibrated his words differently.” This of course, stopped short of an apology as that might have been a bit too much pride to swallow. Just a day before however, his friend Mr. Gates was calling for an apology from Sgt. Crowley as well as spouting off about bringing legal action against the Cambridge police department. As is often the case with President Obama however, once he wet his finger, lifted it in the air and determined which way the wind of popular opinion was blowing, his tune and that of his pal’s began to quickly change. Our president saw the wisdom and need for expediency in starting damage control immediately. To Sgt. Crowley’s credit, he helped the president save face quite a bit by graciously suggesting that he and the president and Mr. Gates meet together at the White House. President Obama pounced on that idea knowing that would go a long way in diffusing much of the undesired focus and attention that he himself had brought to the whole incident with this initial comments that were both wreckless and unwise.

 

        Included in the suggestion that these three men meet was the idea of sharing a beer with one another as well. What amazes me is not the idea of that which was suggested by the police officer, but the fact that one of today’s headlines is “Which type or brand of beer will the president choose?”  Do we really care? Is that honestly worthy of headline news? This beer headline falls right into the same category as the news flash of when he swatted and killed that pesky ol’ fly during a news conference. I wrote about that incident as well in a blog entitiled “IT’S HEADLINE NEWS-THE FLY IS DEAD- GOD HELP US”. Our news media has simply gone mad. We are perhaps on the verge of passing socialized health care and yet some of our biggest stories are about how our president killed a fly and what type of beer he will choose to drink. This is precisely why I noted in that earlier blog that he is a celebrity president. Just as we have scores of people who are intensely interested in every bit of minutia concerning the lives of various celebrities such as Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Brittney Spears and the like, we also have millions of folks who view our president in the same way. He is of rock star status in their minds and they are more concerned with what kinds of jeans he is wearing and what beer he drinks than they are with his policies, his philosophies and in what direction he is taking our country. It doesn’t paint a pretty picture or make a great statement about the intellectual health of many of our citizens, but it’s our reality, it’s where we are at.

 

        Take a stand and determine to live and think at a higher level than that , won’t you? Refuse to be petty and small. Decide to educate yourself on the real issues, the important decisions that will affect all of our lives. Base your decision on integrity and principle and not the whims of what is the fad thought of the day.

 

        Don’t take a poll of what other’s think..instead inform and enlighten yourself and take the high road even when our shallow and celebrity consumed culture does not.

 

        Just be more excellent and charactered than our leaders and politicians and you will be way ahead of the game.

 

        These are some thoughts to ponder...so much better to be thoughtful and deliberate than speaking and acting off the cuff, then having to do damage control. Our president has proven that. Let’s learn by his example.