President Obama delivered the annual State of the Union Address last Tuesday, and as one might expect of any SOTU: it was rife with hyperbolized claims of accomplishments, and subtle jabs at the opposition party, one witty line of which, reminded the Chamber of his campaign victories and seems to have sufficiently satisfied his base aside from the rest of his speech.
However, he also made some vague references to the state of political and social discourse during his Presidency and seemed to blame his critics for their ‘rashness’ and ‘cynicism’, while touting his policies, many of which backfired on him, as the wise way to move forward. The following is my humble attempt to dissect some of his statements in the hope of providing a clearer picture about what was said:
1. “The shadow of crisis has past…”
What he means here is that he is, again, brushing the numerous crises that have plagued his administration, under the rug without providing the American people with answers: Solyndra, Benghazi, the VA, Fast and Furious, inaction on Syria and ISIL, subpoenaing journalists, Healthcare.Gov, GSA, IRS, and so on and so on… He has ‘turned the page’ without letting people read it.
2. “Will we approach the world fearful and reactive, dragged into costly conflicts that strain our military and set back our standing? Or will we lead wisely, using all elements of our power to defeat new threats and protect our planet?”
Here, Obama proclaims that we will be hesitant to act, which will allow evil to spread without America in the way, because it’s not our job to deal with it. It took the USA months to act on ISIL while thousands were raped, tortured, and murdered. It’s not reactionary to want a swift response to ISIL, it’s the decent thing to do. It doesn’t take a deep analysis to figure out that they are the bad guy. However, it takes immeasurable levels of moral equivocation not to act against them when we can.