Aug 13, 2008

Obama not "American" enough, some say

HONOLULU -- While Sen. Barack Obama enjoyed his vacation home to the islands with his family, it is also possible his Hawaii roots may be used against him in the presidential campaign.

First, an ABC network commentator said his Hawaii vacation made no sense. Others said his upbringing in Hawaii and Indonesia can be used to make him seem less American than Sen. John McCain.

Three days from celebrating the 49th anniversary of statehood, Hawaii is once again defending its place in America while some say it is still too "exotic" a place to visit or even be born.

ABC's Cokie Roberts said Obama's Hawaii trip made no sense when he was not ahead in the polls.

"But it has the look of him going off to some sort of foreign, exotic place. He should be in Myrtle Beach," Roberts said on ABC's This Week.

"She's a bit of a fool. That's the only thing you can say," U.S. Rep. Neil Abercrombie said.

Hawaii Sen. Dan Inouye said he was shocked and saddened by the remarks, which reminded him of pre-statehood attitudes.

"We've been fighting this for 50 years now," he said. "I think we've conducted ourselves in an American way."

Meanwhile, the idea of directly using Hawaii against Obama was apparently floated within Sen. Hillary Clinton's campaign last year.

Clinton Strategist Mark Penn wrote, "Obama's boyhood in Indonesia and his life in Hawaii... exposes a very strong weakness for him -- his roots to basic American values and culture are at best limited... I cannot imagine America electing a president during a time of war... who is not at his center fundamentally American in his thinking and values..."

Clinton rejected the strategy, but some say an ad from McCain hints at the same theme.

Inouye hopes the campaigns are not going there.

"The question comes up" what is America, and who is American?" Inouye said. "I would resent anyone suggesting that my roots are not American."

McCain's Hawaii co-chair Kimberly Pine said McCain talks about being an American to emphasize his own values, not to contrast with Obama. There are anti-Obama groups trying to emphasize Obama's race or upbringing, she said. The orders from McCain are not to use those tactics, which she said they consider un-American.

Neither the Obama campaign nor Cokie Roberts returned KITV's calls.

I had a feeling Obama's Hawaiian background would eventually be used against him by anti-Obama whiners. Why not? Jealousy, probably, that he's from a place as exotic and foreign as Hawaii and he gets to spend a week there, while they're stuck with Myrtle Beach, or some shitty overdeveloped spread of sand in florida.

People come up with the most ridiculous bullshit to use against the opponent of their politician of choice, and others just hop on the bandwagon and say "yea, he's right, i mean think about it that's sew unamerican LOL. i bet he eats weird foreign hawaiian stuff like sushi and poy (sp?) and spam musubi, WHATEVER THAT IS LOL. i even heard hawaii has lotz of rainbows, that sounds pretty exotic (woops even the word 'exotic' is too exotic), i mean gay. yeah, rainbows just scream gay. and you know what 'foreign' translates to. TEARERIST!!!lol."

That is why I pay only very limited attention to this presidential race. It often makes me feel like I'm in fourth grade all over again.

1 comment:

fleetingentity said...

Society is in a pretty sad state when 'un-American' has come to mean growing up anyplace with a preservation and appreciation for natural exotic beauty. Makes me quite sick actually. They are jealous, I wish I were so lucky...