Thursday, June 4, 2009

Quote of the Day

The conclusion of Pres. Obama's speech in Cairo today:
All of us share this world for but a brief moment in time. The question is whether we spend that time focused on what pushes us apart, or whether we commit ourselves to an effort -- a sustained effort -- to find common ground, to focus on the future we seek for our children, and to respect the dignity of all human beings.

It's easier to start wars than to end them. It's easier to blame others than to look inward. It's easier to see what is different about someone than to find the things we share. But we should choose the right path, not just the easy path. There's one rule that lies at the heart of every religion -- that we do unto others as we would have them do unto us. (Applause.) This truth transcends nations and peoples -- a belief that isn't new; that isn't black or white or brown; that isn't Christian or Muslim or Jew. It's a belief that pulsed in the cradle of civilization, and that still beats in the hearts of billions around the world. It's a faith in other people, and it's what brought me here today.

We have the power to make the world we seek, but only if we have the courage to make a new beginning, keeping in mind what has been written.

The Holy Koran tells us: "O mankind! We have created you male and a female; and we have made you into nations and tribes so that you may know one another."

The Talmud tells us: "The whole of the Torah is for the purpose of promoting peace."

The Holy Bible tells us: "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God." (Applause.)

The people of the world can live together in peace. We know that is God's vision. Now that must be our work here on Earth.

Another brilliant speech, laying a hopeful foundation for peaceful interaction between our nation and the Muslim world.

What did you think of the speech?


matt said...

to answer your question: naive. the whole of the people of the world cannot leave in peace; sorry for the newsflash. most can, some can't, and that's just the way it is, always has been, and always will be. why? because there are bad people out there. only the good ones listen to his speech and nod their heads. the bad ones, if they hear it, couldn't care less. that's not to say one shouldn't help his fellow man in need, but platitudes and vagueries will get us nowhere with leaders of state sponsored terrorism and international thuggery.

but man, it sounded good.

Anonymous said...

well said Matt

Matt F. said...

Okay, Matt, you missed the point. Obama understands there are bad people out there. The important question is why are there bad people out there? Given your theory, there would be an equal number of terrorists in richmond as there are in baghdad. Bad people don't spring from the soil, they are made by their circumstances. So we should reach out to the vast majority of Islam that is either pro western or sitting on the fence and attempt to enlist them on our side. At the same time we should be dealing with the "bad people" that exist and, more importantly, trying to help frame a world in which becoming a terrorist doesn't seem like such a good option. Please tell me how being a giant asshole to everyone in that part of the world is helping us make less bad people.

Matt F. said...

Wow, just read the incredible crazy postathon. Way to stick up for Katie. Well done. You are my second favorite Matt.

matt said...

agreed, circumstances can create bad people. however, presbo said very clearly (he actually used his favorite intro line "let me be clear") that it is not another nation's right to impose their form of government on another. in many ways, i agree with that statement, however, when the circumstances that produce bad people is their govt, then how the heck are we to fix the problem? by talking? change either has to come from within, i.e. MLK or the Polish solidarity movement (as an aside, Jimmy Carter screwed up our only chance in Iran with respect to an internal uprising) or we change it by force, something presbo says he will not do. so now what? more talking, more "peace accords", more of the same nonsense that literally every administration for the last 50 years has tried.

another newsflash: when one side once nothing less than the annihilation of the other, on what grounds do you think they will be willing to negotiate and then honor that negotiation? or when one side has declared war on the other, but the other doesn't want to literally pick up arms and fight, how does that side win? all wars in the history of mankind were won when the one side killed so many of the other or destroyed so much of their property, they gave up.

to your point, that's what it will take to make the world seem like no so great of a place to be a terrorist in, and nothing less. no amount of talking will convince western hating people that we are not out to get them.

further, i find it ironic that for the most part, the reason the islamic world does not like us is because our society is too liberal. granted, they take it too far the other way, but it's still funny to me.

look, all i am saying is that reasonable people can debate and even sometimes come to a compromise. unreasonable people cannot be debated or negotiated with (and we all know people like that in our lives, don't we?).

Matt F. said...

I think if you look at Obama's policies it is clear that he is dedicated to going after the terrorists, especially in the Afghan-Pakistan border areas where they are currently basing themselves. He said in the speech that he would reserve the right to find and kill those responsible for terrorist attacks. My point, however, is that in addressing the root cause of terrorrism one must address the vast majority of Islamic people who are not terrorists. Only when we can win their (more reasonable) hearts and minds can we stop the recruitment efforts that continue to replace those terrorists who we do kill. Obama was not speaking to Osama Bin Laden in that speech, and he knew it. He was speaking to the reasonable people in the Islamic world who can do far more than we can in discouraging extremism.