How One Crazy Florida Quran Burner Gave Obama A Giant Political Gift

There has been much speculation that the flap over the planned 9/11 Quran burning in Florida has created a distraction for President Obama, but instead of a distraction, Obama has been given a political gift, as the man that the the Right loves to label a troop hating , socialist, Marxist is the lone leadership voice defending our troops.

Here is the video of Obama on GMA:

Obama viewed Terry Jones’ misguided publicity stunt through his Commander in Chief role, “If he’s listening, I just hope he understands that what he’s proposing to do is completely contrary to our values of Americans. That this country has been built on the notions of religious freedom and religious tolerance. And as a very practical matter, as commander of chief of the Armed Forces of the United States I just want him to understand that this stunt that he is talking about pulling could greatly endanger our young men and women in uniform who are in Iraq, who are in Afghanistan. We’re already seeing protests against Americans just by the mere threat…”

When has what he was worried about, Obama answered, “Well, look, the … this is a recruitment bonanza for Al Qaeda. You know, you could have serious violence in places like Pakistan or Afghanistan. This could increase the recruitment of individuals who’d be willing to blow themselves up in American cities, or European cities. You know and so you know, I just hope that, he says he’s … he’s someone who s motivated by his faith… Yeah. I hope he listens to…those better angels. And understands that this is a destructive act that he’s engaging in.”

Compare this position to the fumbling, bumbling political spin put out there by the GOP that Quran burning is the same as the “Ground Zero Mosque,” as GOP spin bumbler in chief Sarah Palin put it, “Book burning is antithetical to American ideals. People have a constitutional right to burn a Koran if they want to, but doing so is insensitive and an unnecessary provocation – much like building a mosque at Ground Zero.”

I could have used John Boehner or any other faceless Republican in my example because they are all echoing the same talking point that Quran burning is the same as the Park 51 project. To date exactly one Republican leader has strongly denounced the plan to burn the Quran. Earlier today, John McCain posted on his Twitter account, “Pastor Jones’ threats to burn the Koran will put American service men/women in danger – for their sake please don’t do it!”

That’s it. One strong tweet from John McCain has been the firmest denouncement that the GOP has offered. The usual leadership vacuum in the GOP has created a golden opportunity for President Obama to enjoy strong public support on an issue that is a no brainer for Democrats, Republicans, and everyone in the middle. Burning the Quran is anti-American anytime, but burning the Quran while hundreds of thousands of US troops are still serving in the Middle East, will undoubtedly cost young American soldiers their lives.

This isn’t a tough one, but since the Republicans are paralyzed by a fear of their own base, the best they can offer is a wishy-washy half answer, lest they alienate all of those white Americans who they are attempting to terrify into voting Republican this November with nightmares of Muslim bogeymen and “Ground Zero Mosques.” Republicans have been boxed in by their own fear mongering, which means that in strictly political terms, one crazy publicity seeking right wing nut job in Florida, has managed to give Obama a platform to offer something that Republicans can’t muster, sane, common sense, leadership.

The language of the Right’s “Ground Zero Mosque” debate is what emboldened Terry Jones to up the ante of Muslim fear and hate. In this context, burning the Quran is the logical outcome of the “Ground Zero Mosque” terror and intolerance campaign. While Right Wing rhetoric gives birth to Quran burning, President Obama is able occupy the political territory that the Republicans feel entitlement and ownership of. President Obama is advocating for, supporting, and protecting the troops.

It must drive Republicans mad to see the man that they label as Muslim, Socialist, military hater standing up for the troops. Obama is standing up for their troops. Republicans have spent three decades claiming a mythic dominion over God, flag, and country, but one lone extremist in Florida has managed to demolish their shaky ideological house of cards. Terry Jones’ and his Quran burning plan gave Obama a political gift, but this presidential political bounty originated in the festering loins of the Republican Party.

20 Replies to “How One Crazy Florida Quran Burner Gave Obama A Giant Political Gift”

  1. Absolutely! what a gift. This nutcase that the Gop are afraid to denounce is actually gathering support from their base hmm….. If this is a display of their so called patriotism then that nutjob and keep it!

  2. Thank you for your insightful piece. I hope this POV gets lots of coverage. We need more liberal leaning writers to counter those who wrap themselves in faux family values, religiosity, and perverting the Constitution for their own political gain.

  3. Great post, Jason.

    The following well-turned phrase alone would have made it a keeper :>)

    “…but this presidential political bounty originated in the festering loins of the Republican Party.”

  4. This anti-Muslim sentiment, conjured up by the fuss over a proposed mosque that would be near but not at Ground Zero, has been responsible for several anti-Muslim incidents of which the proposed burning of the Quran is the latest. This bozo Jones, whom I can’t bring myself to call a minister, is the ultimate embodiment of the hypocrisy, religious bigotry, and phony patriotism that the GOP has become all too well known for over time. What they call their patriotism is actually a narcissistic, narrow-minded, and mindless disregard for anyone but themselves and their ilk, including the American troops who actually have to bear the brunt of anti-American hostility in Afghanistan and Pakistan. I can only hope that these latest events have caused more and more people to see these fakes exactly as they are. They are both intellectually and morally bankrupt.

  5. Thank you for your article. I am so sick and tired of republicans thinking they have the soldiers best interest at heart. They don’t and never have. McCain is one of the worse for Veterans interests. They are willing for our soldiers die for this country yet the republicans are the ones who don’t want to fund anything to help the vets. It’s always been that way. As a wife of a retired soldier I resent the republicans. They don’t walk the talk. Many lower middle class people go into the military to get the GI benefits and some like my husband and our dads who were career soldiers loved the way of life in the military. Many are joining now because they can’t find jobs on the outside. Politicans are always good at sending other peoples children. Heck even Palin’s son went in because he had to. He got into some trouble and his friends covered for him. Lets home he has straightened himself out.

  6. I’m not sure how further revealing Obama as a muslim is a gift to him. I guess that’s one way to look at it, though.

  7. It’s as helpful as further revealing your ignorance is for us, although only one of those revelations is true.

    Now run along and find your teabags and tinfoil like a good boy.

  8. Pls note he has no idea how it further revealed Obama as a muslim, and that the barking in his head is getting louder

  9. So what you’re really saying is that American Muslims are not welcome or allowed in the “festering loins of the Republican Party?” Yeah, I doubt they’re too chagrined that they’re not sharing those particular cloistered quarters right now.

    The GOP must be so proud of their teeny-tiny political tent where nobody is welcome but the “yoo-Hugh’s” of the world.

    Thanks for allowing me to work in Mr. Easley’s description of the GOP one more time.

  10. I am so tired of labels (ex. liberals, dems, Independents, GOPs, muslims, etc.) As Obama pointed out in his speech in Ohio – It’s about Americans….PERIOD! We really need to step back and realize that we will never agree politically on every issue. Most intelligent Americans can and do agree or disagree with both parties on some issues. I was a registered Republican at 18. I didn’t always agree with their positions. As an Independent now, I agree with some of the dems on some issues and agree with a few republicans issues. It is time we adults grow up and quit labeling one another. We are Americans and that is the bottom line!

  11. Glad you liked it C.L. I read some stuff about how this Quran burning was a problem for Obama, and the lazy journalism bell went off in my head, and it took about two minutes of comparative thought before I realized that the conclusion being reached was not the correct one. Obama’s critics are actually giving him the opportunity to debunk all of their criticisms of him with their behavior.

  12. Funny enough, I wrote four versions of that concluding sentence. Your approval has verified to me that I made the right choice, thanks.

  13. Liberal leaning? Why Cynthia, that may be the nicest description of my writing that anyone has posted here in a while. I am glad that you liked the piece. One of things that makes this site different from most others is that we have an intelligent staff who aren’t afraid of either the term liberalism, or to discuss issues in modern terms. Nobody here backs down from a challenge.

  14. Thanks AFM,

    My life experience tells me that there are plenty of Democrats and Independents in the military, but according to Real America doctrine these patriots don’t exist. As one who grew up, lower middle class I know lots of people who signed up because the GI Bill was their only way to pay for school. Republicans never back up their flag waving with actual actions or funding, and one of our most secret national shames is what our vets have to go through just to get the benefits that they have earned.

  15. Great piece Jason! I suspect the GOP is going to be giving Democrats (and President Obama) many gifts in the next few weeks.

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