As trivial issues go, this is one of the trivialist (sic).
'Not so long ago, it was the right's indignant lament that Democrats did not accord sufficient respect to the president of the United States. The president in question happened to be the right's president, and Democrats, it is true, were universally dismissive of him, treating him with a contumely that brought them no credit. Overheated sections of the right--first the "birthers," now the "speechers"--are meting out to Obama precisely the sort of disrespectful treatment they execrated when it was directed by the left at President Bush. (How refreshing it would be, I say, and how restorative of civic decency, if George W. Bush were to make a statement today urging his party to accept an American president's right to connect directly with America's schoolchildren. After all, what was Bush doing on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001?'
Responding to a pundit responding to pundits and politicians sounding off about something really quite unimportant is pretty daft, but here goes.
Nothing, I repeat nothing said about Obama so far in his presidency is even a smidge as bad as the horrific vilification of George W Bush. Things may get that bad in the future, but so far, they haven't. Contumely? That's a poor word to describe the hideous, hateful and vicious abuse heaped on President Bush. Indeed, most of the critics of TARP, the 'Stimulus' program, the automotive industry nationalisation and the attempt at health care nationalisation have been quite careful to avoid personalising the attacks- they have made their arguments about public policy, not Barack Obama.
Barack Obama lied about who he is and what his politics were during the election. He would never have got the office if he had been candid. That is the background to the criticism of this speech to the kiddies. Lately, people have stopped trusting Obama. They are afraid that he IS a communist, and that like all communists, he will proselytize like crazy. True, there is a sense that many of the commentators have lost their equilibrium somehow, but that makes complete sense. They trusted Obama, and now they found he lied to them. They have been confused and shocked by this. They don't know what to think, and their imaginations are going into overdrive.
Somehow or other, perhaps because he is a 'recent immigrant', Tunku Varadarajan hasn't noticed all that going on. He presumably wasn't around for 9/11 because on that day, President Bush wasn't giving a speech to school children- he was reading to them from a childrens book. Which is EXACTLY like giving a speech written by political staffers, isn't it Tunku?
I personally don't think Obama is trying to prosyletize the kiddies. But I can understand people who don't know what to expect from him anymore.