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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Column: We should thank Obama, for real this time

“Thanks, Obama.”

That simple, succinct jab at our president has been commonplace over the past few years, playfully blaming our commander in chief for everyday annoyances. It’s moderately amusing, but represents a more profound issue than just a passing phrase.

We as Americans, and especially us millennials, don’t give the president — no matter who it is — much respect anymore. It is almost as if a president needs to align with our exact individual ideals or he is an idiot, undeserving of any esteem.

It is far more “in” to talk down the president instead of giving sincere thought to the motions that might not align with your opinion.

Not that he should be revered as a dictator or anything like that, but to write off a person who steps up to take on the world’s hardest job just because his viewpoint differs from your own seems a bit narrow-minded.

For the most part, presidents are trying to do what’s best for America. If they weren’t, they would not exert the unmatchable energy to run for an office that only rewards them with a stress level that would make even a UA student with seven final exams next week cringe.

Power and fame are attractive features of the job, yes, but being the leader of our country should come with a basic level of respect for an office with the idealistic goal of making our country the best it can be.

For me, a more conservative-minded person, I certainly disagree with Barack Obama on various policies. But since he isn’t, as far as I can tell, a silver-tongued snake trying to catalyze the downfall of America, I respect him for having the courage to lead our nation.

Our president should be given respect if they are competent and genuinely striving to help the country. The respect should not be eliminated based on the political party in which they reside.

Respecting the president isn’t just some weird tradition to follow because we are flag-flyin’Americans — it serves a purpose that is greater than following an aged principle. It’s unifying.

Some people are conservative, some are liberal. There are many flaws to a two-party system and it seems like the rift is only growing wider and wider. Showing respect to whichever person is leading our country is something that can stop people from quibbling and do more to achieve actual progress.

That is not to say the president is some infallible figure that needs to be thought of positively 100 percent of the time. There is a difference between criticizing and being disrespectful. The president should be criticized when necessary. Slandering George W. Bush or Obama for some vague reason that you can’t fully explain is just disrespectful and divisive.

Even if — gasp — Donald Trump is elected, we should give him a fair shake at presidency before going irate with the insults and uproar. If he is our next president, I hope he can operate the office well and make a positive impact. If not, then it’s time to protest and stir up a little backlash.

America is in one of the most divided states we’ve seen in our lives, and every bit of unity we can find is beneficial to our country. Giving our president some respect — regardless of their political party — would go a long way to help that.

Follow Scott Baca on Twitter.

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