Even though I live in the political capital of the world, I’m typically not one to comment on political ongoings. In fact, my general dislike toward politics is most likely derived from living in a city for most of my adult life where life revolves around who’s in office, which party you belong to, and which political connections you have.
However, even I feel the need to comment sometimes on the more humorous and idiotic things that politicians do. In this case, I’d like to focus on what to me was a humorous comment by democratic candidate Barack Obama (although I’m sure the Republicans are having a field day on how “idiotic” it was of him). Last week, Obama revealed that while he wasn’t proud of it, he had indulged in some drug use while a teenager. First of all, how many people out there are actually proud of their drug use? Although I understand why he said it, that is just plain silly.
The humorous part comes from Obama’s subtle jibe toward Bill Clinton and his nonsensical comment during the ’92 campaign about not inhaling. Obama commented, “The point was to inhale. That was the point.” Ohhh, I get it now. You use drugs to get high? And here I was confused all these years about why you smoked pot, or did any drugs for that point.
I applaud Obama’s honesty in revealing past drug use, and I strongly believe that minor indiscretions from one’s past should not be held against him (if that was the case, then we wouldn’t have our current president, now would we?). It makes Obama human, for god’s sake. He grew up in a time of experimentation, free love, and all that other 60s/70s craziness. I think a little pot smoking says a lot less about one’s moral character then, for example, Rudy Giuliani, who’s one what, his 17th wife? And I don’t even think that should prevent Guiliani from becoming president (although I may have to move to Canada if that happens).
Of course, the Republicans are bound to have a grand old time ripping into Obama for his honesty, something they are not very familiar with. “Smooth Talkin’ Mitt Romney,” as the DNC likes to call him, pounced first, saying, “I think it’s important for us not to go into details about the weaknesses and our own failings as young people for the concern that we open kids thinking that it’s ok for them.” And how exactly was Obama making drug use seem ok? Did he later parade around, kissing babies while whispering in their ears how awesome drugs are? No, he admitted he made a mistake, which is more than a lot of candidates seem capable of doing.
So while I have yet to seriously consider any of the potential candidates, I think the American public as a whole would benefit if they followed Obama’s lead and worked more on being honest and less on spinning words and talking in circles.