Ronald Reagan’s love for the United States of America was both visceral and intellectual. He felt in his bones and he could articulate it with his words. He could tear up when at the sight of the American flag flapping in the breeze or at the sound of someone singing the Star Spangled Banner.
In words nearly everyone could understood, he could express what made this nation great, the ideals of its founders, the goodness of its people. Such expression does not come naturally to the man who currently occupies the office the Gipper once did. This is not to say Barack Obama doesn’t care for this nation — or even to suggest he doesn’t love it (as the title to this post questions), but simply to say that if he does love this country, he doesn’t make that passion as manifest as did the Gipper.
This question came to mind last night as I wrote last night about Jim Kessler’s contention that Democrats would do well in the 2010 election if they could just emulate the Gipper, particularly that Republican’s ability to offer a “ positive, powerful, muscular view of what this country can achieve“.
To which point, Paul Mirengoff responds:
But Obama doesn’t do “powerful and muscular” well, at least not in the same sentence as “America.” And for a good reason – he is ambivalent about such an America. Reagan’s belief in that American was not only genuine, but consuming. Thus, he could run that “play” in good times and bad. Obama might be able to run it semi-convincingly in good times, but not now.
In a similar vein, JadedbyPolitics served up this comment to my post:
Their problem would be that their “leader” does NOT believe in the AWESOMENESS of America. To be THE leader in the World economy and to sell that not only here in America but around the World, one must first suspend disbelief that WE The People are a good and great people!
Maybe Obama does love this country. If so, he needs to do a better job selling that passion to the American people.