The Obamas’ date in NYC: letter to the editor the Herald didn’t print

By | July 2, 2009

I sent this letter to the Boston Herald on June 8.  Unfortunately, they declined to print it.  Although I wasn’t reading the entire paper every single day around that time, I don’t recall the Herald printing a single letter, column or article defending the Obamas against the attacks on them for their “date night” in New York City.  Shame on the Herald.

To the editor:

One cannot help but wonder if those who profess outrage at the Obamas’ date in New York were similarly offended by the nearly 80 trips George W. Bush took to his Texas ranch at taxpayer expense.

While our nation’s economy and stature crumbled, Bush went on vacation for over 400 days, and it cost us far more than the price of the foreign oil he burned to get there.

Proportionally, Obama has taken ten times fewer days off and four times fewer vacation trips than Bush.

The feigned outrage is much more than much ado about nothing. It is astoundingly offensive, egregiously partisan sniping at the leader of our country at a time when he is burning the candle at both ends cleaning up the mess left by his predecessor. To say that Obama and his family deserve a little time off would be a monumental understatement.


Jonathan Kamens

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4 thoughts on “The Obamas’ date in NYC: letter to the editor the Herald didn’t print

  1. jik Post author

    Actually, they printed several of my letters defending Obama during the campaign. For example:

    July 25, 2008:

    To the editor:

    Cal Thomas wonders if Barack Obama’s team of 300 foreign-policy advisers is proof of inexperience.

    Perhaps if George W. Bush had 300 advisers, he wouldn’t have embroiled us in an unnecessary war which has killed over 4,000 of our brave soldiers and countless innocent Iraqi civilians, cost our country almost $1 trillion, and destroyed our economic stability.

    Perhaps if John McCain had 300 advisers, he would not claim that it’s “not too important” when our troops come home.

    Research has shown that the more intelligent a person is, the more he understands what he doesn’t know. The difference between Obama’s team of advisers and his opponent’s is the difference between confidence and cockiness.

    Jonathan Kamens

    June 6, 2008:

    In response to “Any judgment call goes against Obama”:

    To the editor:

    Jonah Goldberg would have us believe that Senator Barack Obama’s opposition to the Iraq war in 2002 was due to blind adherence to Democratic Party dogma. Unfortunately for Goldberg, the Democratic party was split nearly down the middle, so there was no party line for Obama to follow. On the other hand, Senator John McCain surely didn’t exercise much judgment in voting for the war along with 97% of his Republican colleagues.

    Goldberg further asserts that if Obama had truly been opposed to the war, he would not have voted for war-funding bills. In fact, by voting to continue funding, Obama proved that he has the wisdom and courage to understand that the lives of our troops are not bargaining chips or political fodder, a fact which Goldberg has apparently forgotten.

    After reading Goldberg’s column, it’s clear who has the judgment deficit, and it isn’t Obama.


    Jonathan Kamens

    March 24, 2008 (they this what I sent to them; they printed it without the final paragraph):

    To the editor:

    Joe Fitzgerald asks how much of Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s “hate” and “anti-American vitriol” has been absorbed by Barack Obama. Here’s the answer: none.

    Wright preached nearly every Sunday for 36 years before his recent retirement, and his critics have managed to come up with only a handful of admittedly offensive sermons. In doing so, they ignore over three decades of inspirational leadership.

    Why, then, these horrible sermons? Many people who have watched an inspirational leader retire after many years of service will tell you that he didn’t throw in the towel quite soon enough. When people get old, they start saying things they shouldn’t say. When preachers get old, they start saying things they shouldn’t say from the pulpit.

    The decline of a loved and respected spiritual leader does not undo all the good he has done. Obama chose not to repudiate Wright’s words earlier not because he believed in them, but rather because he did not wish to cause his pastor pain. We should respect Obama for this, not condemn him.

    A Herald editorial says that we should “examine the impact of Obama’s relationship with Wright over the years.” Why, then, are people looking at Wright’s words, rather than at Obama’s words and deeds? The answer, clearly, is because there is nothing in them to justify these scurrilous attacks.

    Jonathan Kamens

  2. Nate

    Dude, it’s the _Herald_. Of course they’re not going to post anything defending Obama. They’re the Fox News of Boston newspapers.

  3. jik Post author

    Obama is playing the only role that the U.S. President can and should play in furthering the Middle East peace process: putting pressure on both sides.

    The pressure on both sides is necessary because (a) it helps to ensure that both sides perceive him as a fair arbiter; and (b) it gives both the Israelis and the Arabs political cover to do things that they know are necessary but can’t be seen to be doing of their own initiative.

    The fact of the matter is that the U.S. has never managed to force either the Arabs or the Israelis to do anything that they didn’t at some level already want to do themselves. Worrying about what Obama says and does vis à vis the Middle East is pointless. Rather, as an Israeli citizen and resident of Israel, you should be worrying about what your own government says and does and actively working to push it in the direction you think is right.

  4. abbasegal

    Actually, I wish he’d take *more* time off, at least from his misguided approach for trying to bring peace to the middle east!


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