I did not vote for Barack Obama. I've explained why in previous postings, how his roots in Illinois politics are suspect and how his combination of youth and rapid ascendancy makes me question his bona fides and how I got tired of people comparing him to Jesus. I've also written how the more I see him, the more I like him. I admire his toughness, and his willingness to seek compromise. I respect his intelligence. Frankly, I like the guy, his pandering to Latino voters by recording a promo for the execrable George Lopez Show notwithstanding.
But this president, people hate this president.
In the last week, I've been hit with a flood of anti-Obama rhetoric, most of it coming from white women in their Sixties. This isn't the normal "all politicians are crooks -- they want to steal my Social Security" haranguing you normally hear from the AARP crowd. This is vicious, mean, angry stuff: dark intimations that Obama is Anti-American, even Antichrist, and comments like, "I hate that man" and requests to sign a petition demanding his impeachment for "crimes against America."
We're in a recession, the roots of which lie deep in the Clinton Administration. We're in two wars, one of which, if we're going to be honest about it, is Clinton's war, and one the result of a man with serious Daddy issues deciding that lying to the American public and invading a sovereign nation was preferable to getting some much needed therapy. Last year saw the death of the American car industry, but the American car industry has been dying for fifty years, so how can you pin that on a 48 year old president? Health care, the deficit, the Middle East, our dwindling oil reserves: pick up a paper from 1973, and the headlines will look eerily contemporary. It's all been around for a long time, and none of it is Obama's fault.
So why the hate?
I have three theories.
First, It's Just Plain Racism. Plausible, but more likely if it were, well, 1973. There is still racism in America, buckets and buckets of it, but not everything that's offensive is necessarily racist. Take the casual insensitivity of old men like Harry Reid, who are disconnected enough from any real interaction with African-Americans to know that Negro crossed the Rubicon of Political Correctness a generation ago. This isn't racism as much as it is Old Man disease. A couple of years ago, I happened upon Larry King, the patron saint of Old Men, interviewing some software developer about the latest advancements in video games. The guy was going on about CGI and other technical mumbo jumbo, when King, impatient and confused, interrupts with, "So what are we talkin' here? Is this the Pac-Man?" That's about where Reid sits.
Makes you proud to be an American, doesn't it...
That leaves my two remaining theories, both of which involve, um, Tender Feelings.
Dennis the Menace tore up Mister Wilson's flower bed.
Menace the President tore up everything else.
It stands to reason that they would dislike the sharp talking class president type who relegated their guy to a porch rocker in Crawford.
My second theory is that against all of their conscious desires, these ladies have the hots for our current President. Somehow, the sight of that Mahogany toothpick, speaking in fluent Policy Wonk, stirs something Deep and Forbidden, flushes them with a low grade case of Jungle Fever:
I hate you, I hate you, I hate you, I....love you!
But all of this could just be sleep deprivation.