Friday, January 23, 2009
A Little Unfinished Inaugural Business
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Among all the inaugural hoopla this week, there were a few incidents that we found disturbing–if not down-right offensive–because they took a direct shot at the nation’s military heroes, and the out-going commander-in-chief.
And we’re not referring to the smattering of boos and the refrain of “nah-nah-nah-nah, hey, hey…goodbye” that greeted George Bush as he arrived at the inauguration on Tuesday morning. These events occurred after Mr. Bush left town, at galas that commemorated the swearing-in of Barack Obama.
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By comparison, the quadrennial “Salute to Heroes Ball” went on as planned, just as it has on every Inauguration Night since 1953. But this year’s event was noteworthy for its most prominent no-show: the new commander-in-chief. Barack Obama was the first president to skip the event, breaking a tradition that began with Dwight D. Eisenhower.
To his credit, Mr. Obama did attend the Commander-in-Chief’s ball, but the Heroes gala is no ordinary event. It’s been a staple of the inauguration for six decades and it’s chief sponsor is a powerful organization (the American Legion) that has been courted by every recent president and presidential candidate. Among those honored at the Heroes ball are the nation’s Medal of Honor recipients. This year, 47 of the 99 living MOH winners were at this year’s ball, where they were honored by Vice-President Joe Biden and other dignitaries.
Obviously, the president can’t make it to every inaugural event, but nine commanders-in-chief found time to attend. As for President Obama, he found time to attend something called the “Neighborhood Inaugural Ball,” aimed at D.C. residents. Apparently, living inside the federal district puts you higher on the social register than winning the nation’s highest decoration for military valor.
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Sorry to hear this. Not surprised. Just sorry.
As a vet and an American Legion member, Liberals don’t value the military. Sometimes their disrespect is palpable. In this case, it’s subtle.
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