The Boston Globe's Jeff Jacoby first. Then my comments below the star line.Jacoby begins - - -
On the website of the Tennessee Republican Party is a short video in which residents of Nashville talk about the pride they feel for their country.
One man, for example, mentions his esteem for the First and Second Amendments. A Vanderbilt graduate student says he was proud when Ronald Reagan told Mikhail Gorbachev to tear down the Berlin Wall - "and I was prouder when it came down." A young professional woman extols the "academic and job opportunities that women have in this country." A police officer named Juan says he is proud of having immigrated to the United States, learned English, and become a citizen of this "land of opportunity and the best country in the world."
The video makes its point by alternating these upbeat comments with clips of Michelle Obama telling two different audiences in February: "For the first time in my adult life, I am proud of my country."
In an understated press release announcing the video, the state GOP welcomed Mrs. Obama to Nashville and remarked: "The Tennessee Republican Party has always been proud of America."
One would have to have skin of microscopic thinness to take offense at so gentle and indirect a critique.
No surprise, then, that Barack Obama took offense, reacting as if his bride had been slimed by slurs akin to those that enraged Andrew Jackson when he ran for president. (During the campaign of 1828, supporters of John Quincy Adams maligned Jackson's mother as a "common prostitute" and mocked his adored wife, Rachel, as a "convicted adulteress" and a "strumpet.") In an interview on ABC, Obama growled that Republicans "should lay off my wife," and described the inoffensive Tennessee video as "detestable," "low class," and reflecting "a lack of decency."
If Republicans "think that they're going to try to make Michelle an issue in this campaign," he added ominously, "they should be careful." . . .
Jacoby's entire column's here.
I looked at the ad and thought it was very, very tame. What upset Senator Obama?
Jacoby doesn't see any reason why Ms. Obama shouldn't be subject to criticism as long as she's out campaigning for her husband. I don't either.
I wish Obama's MSM supporters would ask him to explain why he doesn't think people should criticize his wife for criticizing America.
There must be a reason.
I'm all for Michelle Obama's right to say she's never been proud of America until it looked like her husband might get the Dems' presidential nomination.
It's a free country, after all.
But people should be able to criticize her, too.
That's where I stand.
How about you?
Final thought: I liked the history lesson and links Jacoby provided.