I need to stop reading the news because all they do is put me in a bad mood at the stupidity of some people. Some people (I am hoping is just “some”) are apparently outraged over President Obama bowing to the Emperor of Japan (some dude named Akihito). I was reading the reactions and everyone seems to think the same, that it was some sort of humiliating move that makes the United States seemed weak.
And…off I go with reason number 501 why people don’t like the United States. There is absolutely nothing wrong with following protocol in a foreign country. Bowing is the traditional and formal greeting so what is the issue? That President Obama bowed to the Emperor? or that he did and the Emperor didn’t bow back? Some dickhead called William Kristol, a republican pundit speaking on Fox News (Naw, Fox? Really? No way!) Said:
"I don't know why President Obama thought that was appropriate. Maybe he thought it would play well in Japan. But it's not appropriate for an American president to bow to a foreign one" "I'll bet if you look at pictures of world leaders over 20 years meeting the emperor in Japan, they don't bow"
So again, I ask: What is the issue with the President bowing? Is he above regular protocol because he is A president or because he is The President of THE United States of America? And why the word ‘outrage’? How about some outrage over something worth being outraged about? Even if the bow was some sort of presidential faux pas the fact is there are plenty more important things to worry about than if the president bowed or not to another head of state, emperor, prince, king whatever the fuck.
Wasn’t it bad enough that President Bush managed to ruin the relationships between the U.S. and half the world? Shouldn’t it be considered a step in the right direction? Isn’t some humility a welcomed change? I bet the leaders of the world see Obama’s bow as a breath of fresh air after the dumb arrogance of a president who said:
"I'm the commander -- see, I don't need to explain -- I do not need to explain why I say things. That's the interesting thing about being president."
I am sure because I feel the same way that the world is tired of what they view as the U.S. arrogance. We don’t want to hear another President saying:
"Goodbye from the world's biggest polluter." --in parting words to world leaders at his final G-8 Summit, punching the air and grinning widely as those present looked on in shock, Rusutsu, Japan, July 10, 2008.
It is for a reason that for the first time in decades the U.S. isn’t disliked by people all over the world. Some people here might say that they don’t care and that it doesn’t matter and that leaders are usually disliked, the same way the popular cheerleader and the team’s Quarterback is disliked by all in school. The fact is alliances are important for all countries, supporters, backers, friendships, good relationships are important, no country can afford to go around stepping on everyone’s toes and for far too long the U.S. did. For the first time in a long time a current President is doing his best to change that and is faced with the disapproval of his own people!. I can bet my ass that after a comment like the one in Japan by President Busch just a year and a few months ago, President Obama’s bow was not seen as submission, or weakness but as a respectful indication of his willingness to work with them, as a respectful way to show he isn’t above anything and that the arrogance that the world thought the U.S only flavor is far behind, that those days are over.
So let President Obama bow. Stop getting your panties in a twist over such a meaningless moment, over a gesture that was meant to be respectful and meant to breach differences that were carved by eight years of mocking arrogance.
I have nothing else to say but to part with my favorite quote that actually makes some sort of stupid twisted sense:
"I know what I believe. I will continue to articulate what I believe and what I believe - I believe what I believe is right" President Bush Said in Rome, Italy 2001.