Wednesday, January 21, 2009

"Now I have a President"

I've seen a lot of this in Twitter heard it around the office: "Now I finally have a President," or "Obama is my President." The implication here is obvious: the persons involved are saying that they did not recognize George W. Bush as their President.

I responded to one on Twitter: "Obama is my president comments: so was the last guy, and shame on you for not knowing that. I've had 10 of them, if I liked 'em or not."

This was a reply received from a young woman in New York: "we're all entitled to our feelings. mine happen to be that i in no way felt represented by gwb, and i do by obama. don't hate."

I replied, "It's not hate, it's that I have a military background. We didn't pick & choose our C-in-C. All presidents were our president."

It's that last sentence that I think is the most important. People that believe it is the function of the President to represent them as individuals are mistaken, in my opinion. That's (ostensibly, but that's a subject for another posting) the function of the House of Representatives. The President's function is to the represent the interests of the nation as a whole. No one will agree with every decision made by the President, and many will disagree with every decision made by the President. None of that matters at an individual level. Our nation is a consortium of 300,000,000 interests, beliefs, and desires. Our nation is represented as a whole by the individual selected through a free election. Our nation, and every single one of its citizens as a collective, is represented by its President, whether any individual citizen supports him (or her, someday) or not.

This is the strength of our country, and it saddens me to see people refusing to acknowledge the validity of the decision made by the country as a whole. It divides us, and the divided are easily conquered.