Monday, August 30, 2010

Obama blasts lies, disinformation.

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Barack Obama has said that many Americans believe that he is a Muslim because of an on-line campaign of misinformation by his conservative enemies. He also said it was to be expected that right wingers like Glenn Beck would seek to “stir up” people during uncertain economic times.

Williams, sitting under a tent in a rain-soaked New Orleans, where the First Family commemorated the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, asked Obama why so many people were uncertain about something so fundamental as his faith.

“I can’t spend all of my time with my birth certificate plastered on my forehead,” quipped Obama, who took a deep breath to gather his thoughts when asked if the poll reflected his inability to communicate with voters.

“The facts are the facts. We went through some of this during the campaign — there is a mechanism, a network of misinformation that in a new media era can get churned out there constantly,” said a visibly annoyed Obama, referring to “birthers,” who have waged a guerrilla campaign questioning either the existence or the validity of his Hawaiian birth certificate.

“I will always put my money on the American people, and I’m not going to be worried too much about what rumors are floating around there.”

Obama is right, I think, to put his faith in the American people. The people who think that he is a Muslim are right wing nut cases who would never vote for him in a month of Sundays. The ordinary man in the street will not buy into the same insane notions that these right wingers willingly attach themselves to.

It was also nice to see Obama counter the claim that he has "walked back" his support for the principles he reminded Americans of when it came to the Park 51 mosque.

“I didn’t walk it back it all,” he said. “I was very specific with my team… The core value and principle that every American is treated the same doesn’t change… At [a White House Ramadan celebration], I had Muslim Americans who had been in uniform fighting in Iraq… How can you say to them that their religious faith is less worthy of respect?... That’s something that I feel very strongly about.”

As he rightly says, it simply isn't right that one could build a church or a synagogue on that site, but not a mosque.

The nut cases will never understand that point. And that's because they see the US as a nation at war with Islam rather than al Qaeda.

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