Any commemoration of an event is a political act. Is an event worthy of the attention of a nation? And if it is, how should it be commemorated and for what purpose?
A deeply divided United States is soon to mark a decade of the Post-911 world. President Barack Obama has assumed responsibility for setting the tone and determining the content of the commemoration of that shocking day. And there are many who object to his methods and suspected aims. Foremost among those objectors are the Tea Party and its multitude of online, unpaid
Mr Curmudgeon is one of this multitude. And he has a bee in his bonnet. This single bee buzzes in millions of bonnets. Google “Obama” “traitor” and see for yourself.
Mr Curmudgeon places 9/11 in the foremost rank of Days of Infamy. He remarks that December 1941’s Day of Infamy threatened much of the Asian mainland and not only the US base at Pearl Harbor, yet generations of Americans have been proud to commemorate Japanese aggression as if it threatened only the Unites States. According to Mr Curmudgeon, it is perfectly acceptable for Americans to ignore the suffering of millions of Asians and their European colonial overlords.
Mr Curmudgeon protests at Obama overthrowing this long and proud tradition of American self-involvement. Quoting an official pronouncement:
“The White House has issued detailed guidelines to government officials on how to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, with instructions to honor the memory of those who died on American soil but also to recall that Al Qaeda and other extremist groups have since carried out attacks elsewhere in the world, from Mumbai to Manila … The attacks themselves and the violent extremism writ large – is not ‘just about us,”
And what does Mr Curmudgeon object to?
Obama fancies himself the leader of the international community – first and foremost. And he is far more concerned with how his policies play in Paris than Peoria.
Shorter Curmudgeon: Obama takes too much notice of the world beyond the borders of the US. But how much notice is too much notice? Does the world have a different and contradictory set of reasons for remembering 9/11 than the US? Clearly Mr Curmudgeon thinks so. Unfortunately, Mr Curmudgeon doesn’t explain his reasoning here. His readers don’t need him to explain himself. They already know.
But that is the whole point. Mr Curmudgeon being Mr Curmudgeon, the Tea Party Movement being the Tea party Movement and America in 2011 being America in 2011, Mr Curmudgeon doesn’t have to explain himself. Cyberspace is jam-packed full of opinionators whose sole function is to elaborate the grievance and hatred of the already converted. Attempts to persuade are superfluous in a world of deeply ingrained fissures.
Mr Curmudgeon (doesn’t the nym give the game away?) merely adds a little polish to fervently nurtured suspicions about a vast conspiracy to weaken, undermine and betray America. And the chief traitor is none other than the President and Commander-in-Chief himself, Barack Obama.
What happens when many people fear that a traitor sits in the Oval Office? the 10th anniversary of a national trauma is a day when we might find out. And that day is less than a week away.