Our political discourse is dominated by hyperbolic discourse that simplifies the world in an emotionally appealing way. Therein lies its power. It is emotionally gratifying and makes us feel like we’re in the know when we’re not. We would like the world to be black and white, but it isn’t. Unfortunately, theses false and/or deceptive narratives harden into “facts” as they are perpetuated via the media, the blogosphere, and social media. This rhetoric has poisoned our political discourse and has hampered our efforts to deal with our problems.
Some of the most despicable rhetoric has been reserved for President Obama. Once the rhetoric has established the general feeling that Obama is “incompetent” and “weak” (or “tyrannical” depending on the context) all further charges against him then “ring true” (no fact checking needed!). One of the recent charges against Obama accuses him of “cutting and running” from Iraq, leading directly to the creation of ISIS. With extensive knowledge of the situation, Brian Glyn Williams takes on this claim and concludes that “Maliki’s anti-Sunni policies directly led to the rise of ISIS. He, along with Paul Bremer, is the man most responsible for creating ISIS.” But he doesn’t let Obama off the hook completely.
Obama’s recent remarks at the National Prayer Breakfast about the connection between Christianity and slavery may have been provocative given the setting (a setting that is of dubious constitutionality, I might add!), but they were not incorrect. As the historian Joshua D. Rothman points out: “So vital was Christianity to the southern defense of slavery that some historians have estimated that ministers penned roughly half of all proslavery literature in the decades after 1830, though it was hardly only ministers like Baptist leader Richard Furman who one might have heard state that ‘the right of holding slaves is clearly established in the Holy Scriptures.’ Secular politicians drew upon such arguments as well. Jefferson Davis, for example, claimed that slavery ‘was established by decree of Almighty God’ and was ‘sanctioned in the Bible, in both Testaments, from Genesis to Revelation,’ while his contemporary, South Carolina Senator James Henry Hammond, blasted opponents of slavery by arguing that ‘the doom of Ham has been branded on the form and features of his African descendants’ and that ‘man cannot separate what God hath joined.'” Read the entire article here:
History News Network | President Obama, the National Prayer Breakfast, and Slavery.