Click the link below to hear my “Pat Political Point” regarding criticism of President Barack Obama’s “fundamental change” comment. This segment aired on last Sunday’s edition of WSGW’s First Day. The transcript is below the fold.
The recent remarks by former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani in which he questioned President Obama’s love for America certainly fired-up many people. I have a sneaking suspicion that Giuliani knew full well that by saying something incendiary like that would give him the spotlight for a few days.
However, I noticed the ensuing debate on social media, where the argument fell on predictable ideological lines. Liberals demanded an apology, while conservatives lauded Giuliani. And in some sense, Giuliani was tapping-in to the conservative belief that not only does President Obama not love this country, but that he’s a secret Muslim.
Amongst the many asinine statements said on The Facebook or Twitter, there’s an line of argument that’s been thrown my way which President Obama’s detractors say proves Obama doesn’t have a deep love for his country. A few conservatives told me that no one who says they want to “fundamentally change” the country could love said country. They’re referring to Obama’s statements during the 2008 campaign, in which he told supporters that it was time for fundamental change.
I have to admit, I bit on that argument because it doesn’t make sense to me.
Yes, Obama did say fundamental change was needed. But, I’m not sure how that can illustrate his non-love–or hatred–for the U.S.of A.
Fundamental change is what has made this country great through the centuries. We refused to stay stuck. We believe in forever bettering ourselves to become a more enlightened society.
The colonists fundamentally wanted to change things when they wanted to split from England. And the colonists were worse than liberals: The were radicals!
Abolitionists wanted to fundamentally change the country by fighting against slavery. It culminated with Abraham Lincoln when he decided fundamental change was needed leading the charge against the South to preserve the Union. The Civil War would forever fundamentally change America because by the end of it, slavery was dead.
Teddy Roosevelt wanted to fundamentally change America by fighting for, and succeeding to enact major regulations to end the days of unfettered Capitalism. TR fought against the monopolization happening across numerous industries.
Woodrow Wilson fundamentally changed America with the Income Tax. Actually, Lincoln also championed a tax to pay for the Civil War.
Calvin Coolege fundamentally changed America to end many of Teddy Roosevelt’s economic reforms in the form of deregulation.
During the Great Depression, Franklin Roosevelt made radical reforms to fix the economy. He also passed Social Security, which is a form of…Socialism! That was a major fundamental change!
Dwight Eisenhower made fundamental change by advocating major upgrades to our highway system.
President Kennedy proposed Medicare and Civil Rights legislation, and enacted policy to unionize federal employees.
Lyndon Johnson enacted Medicare, Civil Rights, and Voting Rights legislation, which helped fundamentally change America.
Ronald Reagan fundamentally changed America by fighting for a repeal of the FDR era, which helped lead to major deregulation in finance sectors and the rapid decline of unions.
And on and on.
The point is, fundamental change is what keeps America fresh. It’s what makes America great. If we didn’t change, we wouldn’t be able to boast about all of the remarkable things this country has achieved.
If it weren’t for some of the disastrous mistakes of the past, we wouldn’t have learned from those mistakes to become a progressing country.
We vote for change. We vote for candidates who we think will best represent our beliefs and worldview. We vote because we want fundamental change.
If anything, I’m certain our Founding Fathers would say fluoride produced a fundamental change! I’m certain George Washington would’ve praised it!