Considering the success President Obama and his administration have attained – even in spite of Republican obstructionism – it is no wonder conservatives are pissed. But to disrespect the office of the president like this is disgraceful.
Conservatives were fond of ranting and raving about President Obama, accusing him of doing things “beneath the dignity of the office of the president,” such as his interviews with YouTube stars. Yet, if one takes a look at some of their statements over the years – one is reminded of the admonition to beware of pointing a finger at someone because 4 are pointing back at yourself.
Below are 10 reason why conservatives should never talk about anything being beneath someones dignity.
1. General Contempt for the Office of the President of the United States by Conservatives
We will begin with a more general observation regarding the way conservatives have disrespected President Obama for 6+ years now, and by extension have snubbed the dignity of the office of the president themselves on a near daily basis. As Timothy Egan of The New York Times reported in a 2015 Op/Ed piece,
From the day he took office, his legitimacy has been challenged, his American birth has been suspect, and he’s been personally insulted, lectured, yelled at and disrespected in public, by public figures, in a way that few if any American presidents have ever faced.
2. Speaker Boehner Disrespecting the Office of the President
The conservative website Forbes, covered this the best in a piece by Rick Ungar who wrote about the controversy surrounding Speaker Boehner’s invitation to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak before Congress.
I get that the Speaker doesn’t like the President or his policies. I get that many readers of this piece will have snarky responses about how this President already embarrasses himself and our nation, etc., etc., etc.
But what neither the Speaker, nor those who cannot manage to think beyond their distaste for this president, understand is the truly unprecedented step Boehner has taken by joining with the leader of a foreign nation against his own president.
Presidents come and go. However, respect for the office of the presidency, particularly on the part of the man who is second in the line of succession to the presidency, should not.
Through his actions, Boehner may have scored some points for his party and for his preferred policy option vis-à-vis the Iranian nuclear negotiations. But in the process, the Speaker of the American House of Representatives has succeeded in embarrassing the Office of the President.
Considering that Speaker Boehner has failed to accomplish anything of note during his Speakership, I can only wonder how it must feel to have his legacy be his effort to disgrace the American President in the effort to bolster the political chances of a foreign leader.
3. Newt Gingrich’s Racist Attack on the President
Back in September 2010 Newt Gingrich told National Review that President Obama may follow a “Kenyan, anti-colonial” worldview, asking:
What if [Obama] is so outside our comprehension, that only if you understand Kenyan, anti-colonial behavior, can you begin to piece together [his actions]? That is the most accurate, predictive model for his behavior.
4. Rick Santorum Bringing Race into Obama’s View on Abortion
In a 2011 interview with CNS News, Rick Santorum brought race into Obama’s view on abortion, stating:
The question is — and this is what Barack Obama didn’t want to answer — is that human life a person under the Constitution? And Barack Obama says no. Well if that person — human life is not a person, then — I find it almost remarkable for a black man to say, ‘We’re going to decide who are people and who are not people.’
5. Tom Coburn Attacking Obama’s Dependency on Government as an African-American Male
Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) claimed that Obama has stamped his alleged dependency on government because “it worked so well for him” that “as an African-American male… he got tremendous benefit” from entitlement programs.
His intent isn’t to destroy. It’s to create dependency because it worked so well for him. I don’t say that critically. Look at people for what they are. Don’t assume ulterior motives. I don’t think he doesn’t love our country. I think he does.
“As an African American male, coming through the progress of everything he experienced, he got tremendous benefit through a lot of these programs. So he believes in them.
6. Sarah Palin’s Racist Attack on Obama
Notorious for making racist comments about Obama, we decided to highlight one our favorites – the time she was caught spewing racist nonsense about Benghazi on a Facebook note and its linked Twitter account referring to “President Obama’s shuck and jive shtick”.
“Shucking and jiving” have long been words used as a negative assessment of African Americans, along the lines of a “foot shufflin’ Negro.” In fact, I don’t recall ever hearing the phrase used in reference to anyone white.
Obama's Shuck and Jive Ends With Benghazi Lies http://t.co/srKGX5Va
— Sarah Palin (@SarahPalinUSA) October 24, 2012
7. Donald Trump’s Lame Attempt to Convince Obama to Resign
Back in September 2014, Tea Party News Network reported that Donald Trump “may have the solution to rid America of the most lawless and destructive presidency in American history by every measurement.”
Since the GOP establishment in the House doesn’t have the principle to do their constituional [sp?] duty to impeach Obama, and since Democrats in the Senate, led by slightly coherent and treasonous Harry Reid have a lack a love of country and principles to impeach Obama, Trump has crafted a solution that might convince Obama to resign and save the country.
If Obama resigns from office NOW, thereby doing a great service to the country—I will give him free lifetime golf at any one of my courses!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 10, 2014
8. Group Attacks, Part I
There are also examples of times that more than one person came together to attack Obama, such as the time that Sarah Palin, Senator Ted Cruz, and Senator Mike Lee joined a couple hundred protestors in Washington, DC to protest President Obama’s closing down the WWII Memorial (while pretending they had nothing to do with the government shutdown). These protestors then marched to the White House, where they carried a Confederate flag and demanded “the President leave town, to put the Quran down, to get up off his knees, and to come out with his hands up.”
Something is going down at the White House today… pic.twitter.com/ThxvQBJa9Y
— Aaron Takahashi (@TakaHashtag) October 13, 2013
As we reported at the time, “Did no one realize that carrying a Confederate flag in front of the White House, where our first African-American family now resides, was an absolutely disgusting display of racism? The Confederate flag – which represents a war that killed 600,000 Americans over the right to enslave other human beings?”
9. Group Attacks, Part II – State Officials
Examples of racism directed at Obama flourished during campaign cycles and as Slate reported in 2012,
“[V]ery often you’ll have local, state, and sometimes national officials exposed for explicit racism. It seems like it has become a monthly occurrence that an elected Republican either forwards some horrible racist chain email about President Obama or makes some horrible racist off-the-cuff remark. (For a few examples of this from the past year, see here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.)
In a stunning example, Jennifer Olsen, chairwoman of the Yellowstone County Republicans and a prominent tea party organizer in Montana, published the following photo on her Facebook page in February of 2013 according to MontanaFesto.
10. Group Attacks, Part III – Broader Attacks
No American president has endured the kinds of malicious and false rumors about his past as has President Obama and as part of an ongoing public service commitment by this website, we present our series of articles debunking right-wing lies taking on myths such as those claiming that Obama’s thesis paper is sealed, college records are sealed from Occidental College Columbia and Harvard, his Selective Service Registration is sealed, Obama’s medical records are sealed, his state senate records are sealed, and that his law practice records are sealed.
The New York Times put it best in a recent article, writing:
The biggest slap at the president was the smear about his birth. It’s insulting and humiliating that Obama — alone among presidents — has been forced to release his long-form birth record to satisfy a clutch of fact-deniers. Leading the attack on the president’s very citizenship is the professional vulgarian Donald Trump, who gets away with the kind of preposterous, race-based comments granted few black public figures.
Trump’s displays of idiocy on Fox News are a staple of that network. I wait for the day when something Trump says that is both stupid and incendiary is held up as representative of all white people — and he’s asked to apologize for his race.