Tickling the World’s Itching Ears

June 8, 2009

The apostle Paul said: “For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from truth and turn aside to myths” (2 Timothy 4:3-4).

Indeed, this generation is loath to tolerate not only biblical doctrine but also other truths. President Barack Obama tickles the world’s ears with promises of hope, change, peace, harmony, diversity, pluralism and “tolerance,” but in too many cases, he has allowed truth to become a casualty — and more than a harmless casualty. Nowhere was that more clearly demonstrated than in his speech in Cairo to the Muslim world.

Many judge Obama’s speeches, not to mention his policies and actions, on his high-sounding rhetoric and professed good will. They ignore his obvious errors and contradictions, duping themselves into believing that supposedly good intentions alone will trump facts and reality and insulate us from the negative consequences that will flow from his distortions.

In his Cairo speech, Obama, as usual, served up a plentiful smorgasbord of platitudes sufficient to appeal to the appetites of almost everyone (except, notably, our steadfast ally Israel). His idolaters in the mainstream media obediently praised him for his “honesty” in trashing America and for his equal-opportunity softball scolding of the Muslim world.

Newsweek’s Evan Thomas even likened him to God — not a god, but God. Many conservative commentators similarly bent over backward to heap guarded praise on him, apparently unable to muster the courage to warn of the dangers inherent in Obama’s skewed vision without throwing in the required adulation.

Instead of joining the sycophants’ chorus, we must illuminate Obama’s intellectual and moral fuzziness, understanding that although clarity isn’t necessarily what people want to hear — especially in matters of such global import — hear it they must.

I ask you: Does it serve the cause of world peace or of America’s national security for President Obama to assume the role of the world’s leader instead of his constitutional role as U.S. president and commander in chief?

Did it advance these causes when Obama painted the United States as the primary antagonist to world peace; distorted the history on the rebirth of Israel by suggesting it was born of European guilt over the Holocaust rather than from an international mandate preceding the Holocaust by decades; manufactured a mythical moral equivalence between the Palestinians and the Israelis — even comparing the plight of the Palestinians to that of African-American slaves and the Israelis to Southern slave owners; disregarded repeated Israeli concessions and land grants to the Palestinians, only to be answered with more terrorism; implied that a two-state solution is a panacea, ignoring that the Palestinians have already rejected that offer from Israel; airbrushed away the Muslim world’s real record on religious tolerance, human rights and women’s rights; stated that “Islam is not part of the problem in combating violent extremism,” even though we’ve seen so little condemnation of terrorism from moderate Muslims and we’ve seen plenty of Jew-hating indoctrination in Muslim madrassas; excised from his vocabulary the terms “terrorism” and “terrorist”; pledged to relax oversight of Muslim charitable giving in the U.S. while completely ignoring the real danger of terrorist funding through that mechanism; stumped for Iran’s right to nuclear power, suggesting that the benevolent United States has no more business having nukes than the malevolent Iranian dictatorship; indicted the United States for imperialism and colonialism against Muslims in which we did not participate; flagellated the United States for its “war of choice” against Iraq, failing to mention Iraq’s incessant violations of U.N. resolutions, its endless provocations and our reasonable belief that it represented a threat to the Middle East and the United States; indicted President George W. Bush for failing to use diplomacy and build an international coalition against Iraq, even though Bush most certainly did; egotistically promised Iraqis that we make no claim to their land or resources despite the fact that we manifestly never have before; flagrantly omitted our philanthropy, humanitarian aid and liberating military actions in favor of Muslim peoples; presumed to castigate, yet again, his own country for engaging in enhanced interrogation techniques, which indisputably saved innocent American lives — a fact he conveniently ignored — and which he has no problem calling “torture,” though many strongly disagree with that characterization; grossly exaggerated the number of Muslims in America, in keeping with his dual false statements preceding the speech that the U.S. could be considered “one of the largest Muslim countries in the world” and that “we do not consider ourselves a Christian nation”?

Magnanimous rhetoric has its place, but we cannot achieve peace and security with wishful thinking and falsehoods.