Just when you thought they were piling on President Barack Obama on issues of little or no consequence–namely the birth-certificate issue–the reversal of the president’s fortunes continue to show why he won the presidential election of 2008.
He’s just flat out smarter than his critics, and he demonstrated that this past week. One issue was put to sleep, the other was put to death. The first was the so-called “birther” issue.
Donald Trump began to gain salience on the conspiracy theory that Barack Obama was a resident alien and not a citizen of the United States. Obama let him stay out there, carrying the Tea Party banner, making noise, claiming Obama is the worst president ever (wonder if he still thinks that?) and stating that he tricked the American people into electing him president.
Then he took a trip to New Hampshire, and–whoop!– the bottom fell out of his claims. President Obama released his long-form birth certificate. The president walked Trump in slow on that one. Right into the web that Trump had woven for himself. Then talked about him, showing a tinge of impatience by stating he didn’t have time for such “silliness.”
Then Obama punked Trump at the White House correspondence dinner telling the real estate mogul that he could use his time more meaningfully, like trying to find Biggie and Tupac. We didn’t know at the time, by now we really know that the president was intolerant of Trump’s politics of mass distraction. He had bigger fish on the hook, the realpolitik of mass destruction–Osama Bin Laden in his sights.
While he was sitting there laughing with (at) Trump, although Trump wasn’t laughing much, his Navy Seals were on their way to Pakistan. President Obama needed to check Trump, who is now asking to see his college transcripts and still insists that he intends to run for president; he is now the mouthpiece for those who want to challenge Obama’s credibility. But the president served him up some celebrity justice without giving a clue what was in the making.
President Obama demonstrated that he had the temerity to humor Trump, and the American public while greenlighting an attack on the world’s number one fugitive who had by and large fallen off everybody’s radar. Except Obama’s. We all just assumed bin Laden to be hiding in a cave in the hills and mountains of Afghanistan. After all that’s why we’re in Afghanistan, right? Looking for bin Laden. At least that’s what we’ve been told.
Turns out he’s been living in a million-dollar compound in Pakistan. Now it all makes sense. Why would a rich man live in the mountains for 10 years? He had long been suspected to be in Pakistan, which our Pakistani allies, to whom we’ve given $18 billion in foreign aid in the last decade, had denied … for as long as six years, according to some sources. Right under the nose of the Pakistani government and next to a military training center known as “The West Point” of Pakistan.
Yet the Pakistanis claim they didn’t know. Now, that doesn’t make any sense at all. The mission to capture bin Laden was OK’d the morning President Obama toured the destruction of Alabama by tornadoes. This whole notion that Obama doesn’t do anything right, with much thought, or that he can on focus on one thing at a time was refuted within 24 hours, when the commander in chief of the United States announced that we had killed bin Laden, and that “Justice has been done,” to the shock and surprise of the whole world. And to the applause of most of the world, except for a few detractors, one being Dick Cheney, who still wants to challenge the president’s credibility.
They don’t believe bid Laden is dead. They say it’s a hoax. But we know who the hoaxers are.
They call them “deathers.” They want to see bin Laden’s body, or for the White House to release photos of the body before they believe he’s really dead. Now why would someone make such a bold proclamation if it wasn’t true? It’s too easy to disprove.
Yet, you’ve heard no rebuttal from al-Qaeda or any other rebel extremists. They’re probably still in shock. Even Rush Limbaugh was forced to acknowledge the reality that Obama had outsmarted the world, gone against his advisers and made the call. Still, some are challenging the president’s credibility on this, as silly as it is.
Justice was done on both fronts last week, domestic and foreign. The president trumped Trump and dumped bin Laden. Regardless of what the silly and senseless want to say, the president of the United States lived up to his campaign billing, “Yes, We Can,” because yes, he did do something (again) that no other president has in recent years.
Let’s see: he bailed out the banks to save the economy, bailed out the auto industry to save millions of jobs, passed a stimulus bill, passed the 100-year challenge of universal healthcare, reinvested in education, pulled partially out of Iraq, then found and killed bin Laden.
Damn, what else a brotha gotta do to get some respect? Just be presidential.
Anthony Asadullah Samad, Ph.D., is a national columnist, managing director of the Urban Issues Forum and author of the upcoming book, “Real Eyez: Race, Reality and Politics in 21st Century Popular Culture.” He can be reached at www.AnthonySamad.com or on Twitter at @dranthonysamad.
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