After 30-year old Georgetown law student and pro-abortion activist Sandra Fluke was mocked by conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh, President Obama felt it was necessary to give her a comforting phone call.
Now, considering the fact that similar (and oftentimes worse) things have been said by pundits and politicians on both sides of the aisle, several critics have wondered why the president chose to get involved in this particular “kerfuffle.”
President Obama explained that he felt it was necessary to console Miss Fluke because he was thinking of his two daughters, Sasha and Malia.
"One of the things I want them to do as they get older is engage in issues they care about, even ones I may not agree with them on,” the President said at a news conference last Tuesday. “I want them to be able to speak their mind in a civil and thoughtful way. And I don't want them attacked or called horrible names because they're being good citizens.”
But by accepting this explanation, one is left wondering why the president didn't console, say, conservative author Laura Ingraham when she was called a “slut” or Sarah Palin when she was called things far worse than anything uttered by Mr. Limbaugh.
Some have argued the president felt compelled to reach out to Miss Fluke because, unlike Palin or Ingraham, she is a private citizen and, therefore, off limits. But considering the fact that Miss Fluke isn't just some bystander but, rather, a professional activist who willingly interjected herself into a national debate, that argument doesn't really work.
Furthermore, Samuel Wurzelbacher, more commonly known as "Joe the Plumber," was very much a private citizen during the 2008 presidential election and, if we remember correctly, the media didn't consider him a "hands off" situation. And we certainly don't remember then-Sen. Barack Obama giving him a call.
So why did the president get involved in the Limbaugh/Fluke controversy?
According to some critics, the real reason President Obama gave her a call is because, well, he operates on a double standard. At least, that’s what Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) implied when he took to the floor of the House on Thursday.
“It struck me that the president recently found time to apologize to someone who had been up here on the hill testifying,” Rep. Gohmert said, “but he never found time to apologize those who he told ‘you cannot practice your religious beliefs.’ Oh yeah, he tried to make an accommodation for a church and hospital but Catholics that had these closely held beliefs?"
Rep. Gohmert noted that, after offending Catholics by telling them that their religious convictions were not compatible with the desires of the Department of Health and Human Services, the White House has yet to extend any sort of conciliatory remark to Church leaders.
And this brought Rep. Gohmert to his main point: that the president has made “numerous frivolous and harmful apologies…on behalf of the United States, while disregarding or even refusing to acknowledge some of the most important current events.”
“I thought that maybe it would be helpful to track, exactly, what deserves apology and what doesn’t,” Rep. Gohmert said, producing a chart he had prepared for his remarks (via CSPAN):
According to the Texas Congressman, the president made “frivolous” apologies when he:
- Went before countries where U.S. soldiers have fought and died and apologized for American “arrogance”
- Apologized for the CIA's use “enhanced” interrogation techniques -- the kind that led to Bin Laden's eventual capture and termination
- Apologized for detaining terrorists at Guantanamo bay
- Apologized to Afghani President Hamid Karzai for the accidental burning of Qurans
Furthermore, Rep. Gohmert believes that the president, by his own professed standards, neglected his duties when he failed to apologize to:
- The family of murdered U.S. border patrol agent Brian Terry
- The families of American soldiers killed during the Quaran riots in Afghanistan
- The numerous conservative women who have been on the receiving end of "jokes" made by left-leaning "comedians" such as Bill Maher (a major contributor to the president's campaign) and Louis C.K.
“I think it helps to chronicle exactly what deserves an apology from the White House these days, you know, just so we know where policies lie and where this president stands and with whom he stands,” Rep. Gohmert concluded.