A fresh perspective on politics and society from the internet generation.

If Obama Can’t Stand Up For Freedom, What Does He Stand For?

Posted by politicizer on June 18, 2009

Michele Walk, Staff Writer

On Tuesday, “President Obama told CNBC that the US is not in danger of overregulating the economy and that the outcome of the Iranian election will not make that much difference in his administration’s policies toward that country.”

You have got to be kidding me.

Even though I didn’t support Obama in the fall, I still had high hopes for him as a President. Perhaps he would bring beneficial change to America as a moderate, as he claimed during the election season. Since coming into office, I have disagreed with his policies more than agreed with them. A majority of these disagreements have been economic, especially his increased involvement in the American economy. He is expanding the Federal Government more than any other president, and is exercising control over the economy that is not his to exercise. GM, the company of whom we once said “what’s good for GM is good for America,” is now Government Motors, and we now have a “pay czar” that intrudes into the affairs of banks more than any other government post has. “Not overregulating?” Give me a break! However, despite  different viewpoints on how issues should be addressed, most of the time I could still understand and agree with his underlying intent: to provide genuine help for those in need.

However, his response to the current election crisis in Iran tells a different story. The Iranian people are begging for support from the rest of the world, and Obama and his administration, even though they are, in the words of Joe Biden, “deeply concerned” by the situation in Iran, have done absolutely nothing. How can he, as the leader of the free world, sit idly by as this crisis unfolds? We as Americans pride ourselves on our freedoms and liberty, and for decades our Presidents, Democratic and Republican, have actively encouraged the spread of freedom. Say what you will about George W. Bush (I myself was not a fan), but his foray into Iraq has at least brought the people more democracy than they have ever experienced and given them hope that they one day may be able to live under a government which reflects their own wishes. The Iranian people are demanding democratic representation, and have shown extraordinary courage in order to defend their fundamental human rights to liberty and freedom in the face of an oppressive regime. We should be assisting the Iranian people in any way possible. The Middle East is ready for democracy – now. So why aren’t we helping them?

Honestly, I’m flabbergasted that Obama doesn’t see his policies changing in the wake of this unprecedented turmoil in Iran. Mousavi, the opposition leader, publicly stated in his campaign many times that he would like to open up diplomatic talks with the United States. For an Iranian politician, he is rather moderate, especially in comparison to Ahmadinejad. If Obama were to recognize Ahmadinejad as a legitimate ruler, which his comment would suggest, it would be an insult to democracies across the globe and humanity in general. While there is no doubt that the United States would still oppose Iran having a nuclear program, to say that the Iranian peoples’ demands for democratic representation wouldn’t change a thing is absurd. The people of Iran, and indeed people everywhere, have the right to free and fair elections.  If Obama can’t stand up for freedom, what does he stand for?


2 Responses to “If Obama Can’t Stand Up For Freedom, What Does He Stand For?”

  1. Nancy said

    The reason that Obama said it doesn’t really matter whether Ahmadinejad or Mousavi win the Iranian election is because they are just figureheads and have no power to engage in true and meaningful diplomatic talks with the US nor internal policy changes. The Ayatollah retains the real power, and he’s not up for re-election.

    President Obama stands up for freedom. But he knows when a fight is futile. Our military and diplomats have enough headaches with Pakistan, Iraq and Afganistan. It’s disgraceful that the women of Iran are repressed and considered second class citizens, but other countries are in real trouble, too. How many countries can we try to influence with our democracy at one time? Let’s be realistic!

    Give Obama “a break”!

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