Monday, April 20, 2009
THE PARTISAN WHINE OF THE DAY
Sen. John Ensign, R-Nevada, complained to the Cable News Network (CNN) Sunday that it was "irresponsible" for President Obama to have been seen "laughing and joking" with Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez at the Summit of the Americas on Friday.
Apparently, Ensign believes a more proper response by the president of the United States would have been to balance a chip on his shoulder and yell, “Bring it on, Hugo.” After all, that was the type of policy that made the United States so popular throughout the world under George W. Bush and accomplished so much.
Remember those glorious days when supposedly adult legislators changed the name of French fries to “freedom fries” in the Congressional cafeteria? Now that’s the way to treat a foe, even if the foe is one of this country’s allies of longest standing.
Hugo Chavez is a jerk -- a popinjay, we might have called him in the past. He is like a spoiled child, hungering for attention. But he is also a head of state and it harmed nothing for President Obama to take the high road and act with the dignity expected from a the leader of the free world.
Nations consist of people and heads of state react to the manner in which they and their countries are treated. The ancient Book of Proverbs says, “A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.” Two thousand years ago, Jesus of Nazareth said, “Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.”
In more recent history, President Teddy Roosevelt said, "Speak softly and carry a big stick." The entire world knows that the United States has that proverbial big stick.There’s no need to rub their collective noses in that knowledge.
There’s a saying among American police officers that says, “If you start out easy, you can always get hard; if you start out hard, there’s nowhere else to go except to force.”