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Why Obama Shouldn’t Bother Appeasing Wingnuts

If Obama came out in support of oxygen, a common meme goes, the Republicans would suffocate themselves. Here’s a perfect example. If Obama doesn’t host a National Day of Prayer event at the White House, he’s obviously a atheistmuslimcommieterrorist. But when he issues a proclamation of days of prayer, they question his motivations:

President Barack Obama signed a proclamation released by the White House on Friday that the next three days (Friday through Sunday) will be National Days of Prayer and Remembrance in honor of the victims of the Sept. 11 attacks on U.S. soil. However, calling for three consecutive days of prayer is unusual from a historical and presidential perspective, says a National Day of Prayer Task Force chairman.

“As much as we would like to see the days of prayer take place every day, we believe it is a rare occurrence,” National Day of Prayer Vice Chairman John Bornschein told The Christian Post Friday. “National days of prayer have been once a year and at times have been called upon more than once. However, historical records show that at least in recent times, Gerald Ford and George H. Bush are the only two who officially signed national day of prayer proclamations more than once in a given year…

Noting that Obama also called for a national day of prayer after the shooting tragedy in Aurora, Colo., in which 12 people were killed and nearly 60 people injured, Bornschein questions the president’s motive during an election year.

“President Obama called for a national day of prayer after the Auroro, Colo., shooting and that comes back to the point, too, that we haven’t seen this type of behavior from him until an election year. Now, suddenly there are multiple calls to prayer,” Bornschein said.

And then there’s this statement, which would make Bryan Fischer green with envy:

Although not referring specifically to Obama’s proclamation, he adds, “We don’t like to see prayer utilized in any way other than being authentic. If it has a political undertone to it then it simply is convoluting the purpose of calling Americans to prayer.”

The mind boggles. This is why Obama shouldn’t even bother trying to pander to the wingnuts; it just doesn’t matter. They’re going to say whatever they’re going to say no matter what he does.

Comments

  1. d cwilson says

    “President Obama called for a national day of prayer after the Auroro, Colo., shooting and that comes back to the point, too, that we haven’t seen this type of behavior from him until an election year. Now, suddenly there are multiple calls to prayer,”

    Since the wingnut meme is that Obama staged the Auroro shooting in order to push through (non-existant) gun control laws, I’m surprised they didn’t also accuse of him creating multiple crises in order to have an excuse to issue more calls for prayer.

  2. says

    Mildly OT, but fundie wingnuts are involved:

    Apparently Paul Ryan and Ann Romney are scheduled to speak at Values Voter Summit – which is a conference held by Family Research Council, American Family Association, and Liberty Counsel.

    So our possible vice president and first lady are going to speak at a conference held by hate groups.

  3. eric says

    If it has a political undertone to it then it simply is convoluting the purpose of calling Americans to prayer.”

    The mind boggles over how ‘calling Americans to prayer’ could ever be considered a constitutional act of government.

  4. Abby Normal says

    I’m confused. Are you saying that the prayer calls are an attempt to pander to the right? If so, then what’s your problem with folks on the right calling him on it? If these prayers aren’t pandering, then what’s the point of using this as evidence he shouldn’t bother pandering?

  5. plutosdad says

    “We don’t like to see prayer utilized in any way other than being authentic. If it has a political undertone to it then it simply is convoluting the purpose of calling Americans to prayer”

    Which is exactly why Jesus said don’t pray in public for others but pray by yourself … oh wait sorry I thought they were condemning the corporate prayer showing off done at city councils, school boards, graduation ceremonies …

  6. Chiroptera says

    Why Obama Shouldn’t Bother Appeasing Wingnuts

    Because they’re, like, wingnuts.

    On the other hand, by looking as if he’s trying to pander to them, and they still freak out, it does underscore just how crazy they are. Might be some method to his madness.

    “Now, suddenly there are multiple calls to prayer….”

    Do they involve a guy climbing up in a high tower to sing out this call? Hey, I’m just asking questions!

  7. says

    “Now, suddenly there are multiple calls to prayer …”
    And probably all on Friday too, hmmmm?

    It would be refreshing if they would just admit their objection to Obama is that he is PWB.*

    * Presidenting While Black

  8. d cwilson says

    So our possible vice president and first lady are going to speak at a conference held by hate groups.

    Why not? They’ve already spoken at the RNC.

  9. Dennis N says

    As much as we would like to see the days of prayer take place every day

    Daily government pronouncements calling for national prayer is a truly frightening idea to think about. That person terrifies me.

  10. Synfandel says

    Is the three-day call intended to hit the Muslim sabbath, the Jewish (and Seventh Day Adventist) sabbath, and the Christian sabbath?

  11. cswella says

    I’m confused. Are you saying that the prayer calls are an attempt to pander to the right? If so, then what’s your problem with folks on the right calling him on it? If these prayers aren’t pandering, then what’s the point of using this as evidence he shouldn’t bother pandering?

    The point is that no matter what Obama does, they’ll never give him anything.

    Doesn’t hold prayers: They call him on it
    Holds prayers: They call him on it

    So his point is that Obama shouldn’t pander to the right because the right doesn’t support him at all.

  12. John Hinkle says

    roggg@11

    National Day of Prayer has a taskforce? With a chairman? Wow. Just wow.

    Oh yes, they have a chairman and goddess knows how many other people consuming their million dollar budget, as well as all the trappings of sucking money from the gullible soliciting donations.
     
    Their main gig is “ministry”, which is French for “give me your money.” At least once a year they’re on Janet Parshall’s radio show during the national day of prayer. It’s a real big deal, and Janet always portrays it as having a great influence on our culture. The fact that multiple people mumbling together has no influence on anything never fazes them.

  13. timberwoof says

    At the risk of invoking Rationalist Privilege, I’ll just declare that every day is a Day of Reason. I’m wiling to grant exemptions for Halloween (even though it’s a Christian holiday), Mardi Gras, and Gay Pride. ;-)

  14. says

    d cwilson “Why not? They’ve already spoken at the RNC.”
    That’s not a hate group. It’s more like a Shriner’s convention, but instead of fezzes and little cars they have nostalgia and resentment.

  15. Ichthyic says

    On the other hand, by looking as if he’s trying to pander to them, and they still freak out, it does underscore just how crazy they are. Might be some method to his madness.

    exactly.

    while Ed views this as lose-lose, I’m rather sure Obama views it as win-win.

  16. Ichthyic says

    …there remains a question of whether such a strategy still has a long-term detrimental effect on sane politics in the US though.

    regardless of the motivations for placating fundies, or even attempting to, it just empowers them all the same, and that sure as hell has been an exponentially growing problem for the last 40 years.

  17. dan4 says

    “But when he issues a proclamation of prayer of days of prayer, they question his motivations:”

    “This is why Obama shouldn’t even bother trying to pander to the wingnuts;…”

    Abby Normal @4 sort of touched on this already, but it sounds like you YOURSELF are questioning Obama’s motivations by characterizing the proclamations as acts of “pandering.”

  18. sunsangnim says

    Muslims also call for prayers in three-day intervals. Coincidence? Maybe he really is Muslim? Is he planning on installing minarets on the White House? Hey, I’m just asking questions.

    No, I don’t know if Muslims really have three-day prayers. I just made it up. That’s close enough, right?

  19. John Phillips, FCD says

    Although not referring specifically to Obama’s proclamation, he adds, “We don’t like to see prayer utilized in any way other than being authentic.

    I lolled, I really lolled.

  20. Joey Maloney says

    I have for years been perhaps the foremost advocate of the Administration making a strong, unequivocal statement about the dangers of drinking antifreeze.

  21. Ichthyic says

    What would the wingnuts say if Obama were to ask Congress for a declaration of war against Hell?

    If I were POTUS, I would so do that.

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