On the surface, the story would seem to be that this furthers the anti-Obama mantra – Secret Muslim President! Of course, things are rarely that simple on the surface.
Response was quick and harsh online – as it usually is. Columnists and other blowhards across the country saw a softball and smacked it.
Guess who else took a swing? Fox News. Imagine that.
Only problem is, Obama didn’t entirely omit thanks to God. In his written proclamation earlier in the week, he called Thanksgiving an opportunity to “give thanks to each other and to God for the many kindnesses and comforts that grace our lives.”
But he didn’t actually speak the words in front of his detractors, so it doesn’t count.
It’s a shame that he’s the first President to ever fail to mention God in a Thanksgiving address.
Wait ... he’s not. George W. Bush typically did, but on one occasion, he did not. Bill Clinton only did so in half of his addresses this time of year.
And where did this info come from? Oddly enough, Fox News. Yes, the very same Fox News that spent a fair amount of its weekend ripping Obama for failing to do something he actually did.
While I’m aligning myself with the stereotype that Fox News is simply an arm of the Republican party, I’ll also point out that three Republican presidential hopefuls – Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum – also failed to mention God in Thanksgiving statements last week.
Hey Republicans! Don’t vote for those guys! They’re Muslims!
I’ll break from the sarcasm for a moment here. Do I think Obama should have thanked God in his Thanksgiving address? Hard to say. As a Christian, it’s easy to say “yes” and move on with my day.
As Fox News was so adamant in pointing out last week, the first Pilgrims came here so they could worship God freely. I’ll leave it up to you to suss out the true intentions of a group of foreigners from hundreds of years ago, but the bottom line is what actually happened – born was a country that allowed freedom to celebrate ALL religions.
In that frame of mind, thanking God in an address meant for the entire country might seem a bit insensitive.
Do I, as a Christian, thank God on Thanksgiving? Yes. Should non-Christians, whom God directs me to love, be required to? No. The fact that I wish they would doesn’t matter.
Leading someone to God through prayer and support is one thing. Trying to force someone to God is another. Part of being a Christian is inviting God into your heart. Breaking and entering doesn’t work.
In the end, this whole “Obama didn’t thank God on Thanksgiving” thing will have next to no impact on his ability to be re-elected. So, what’s the bottom line here?
Obama, our President, who is Christian, was attacked for doing something non-Christian, and it turns out that A.) he didn’t really do it, and B.) if he had, he wouldn’t have been the first self-professed Christian President to do so. It’s the lack of respcet for the truth, our fellow man and God’s will that really gets to me here.
But go ahead. Write this off as another pro-Obama, anti-Republican rant, ignoring the fact that I have no real love or hate for either.
Justin McGill is general manager of The Cadiz Record and can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.