Letter to the Editor: Obama entered White House scandal-free and left the same way


Thursday, March 1, 2018

I recently watched the unveiling ceremony of the portraits of former President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle that will hang in the National Portrait Gallery and I was reminded of their grace, poise and professionalism during their time of service at the White House. Whatever negatives the Obama haters throw at them, their dignity and commitment remained unchanged. In the face of unyielding opposition President Obama never let anger win the day. The array of programs and entertainment they brought to the White House gave rise to a new cultural era reminiscent of the Kennedy years.

In spite of the fact that President Obama was not respected as president by some, he never resorted to childish tweets or name calling. He realized the country was not an island unto itself and its economic security was intertwined on a global scale. He did not threaten or insult foreign leaders for effect but worked to build stronger coalitions. President Obama was intellectually astute, well read and did not rely on Fox News for verified information. He was not a con artist who engaged in trickery.

President Obama entered the White House scandal-free and left the same way. There was no Obama-Putin buddy alliance and no castigating the agencies charged with keeping us safe. I recall how congressional Republicans criticized President Obama's personal family travel expenses, but you can now hear a pin drop when it comes to Trump's exorbitant expenses.

I remember President Obama being called a dictator for signing Executive Orders addressing immigration and environmental concerns congressional Republicans refused to act on. Trump's decision to reverse many of these Executive Orders will undoubtedly wreak havoc on the environment and inflict great pain on many immigrants. I remember President Obama's deep concern about the lack of effective gun control regulations and the signing of an Executive Order to keep guns out of the hands of people with mental issues. Trump has now reversed that Executive Order, too.

Today, I see a president whose dislike for President Obama is telling. I see a president who dares to blackmail congressional Republicans by refusing to sign DACA legislation if they do not comply with his immigration wants, and they, in turn, are responding like an animal protecting its master.

Do I miss the Obamas' charm, grace and wisdom? Indeed, I do, but memories remain.


Rocky Mount