Steve Russell: Thoughts on Obama's speech at prayer breakfast

President Barack Obama delivers remarks during the National Prayer Breakfast at the Washington Hilton in Washington, D.C., February 5, 2015. Official White House photo by Pete Souza

Judge and professor Steve Russell discusses comments made by President Barack Obama about Christianity and violence:
Notice the content of the false outrage over the President’s comments at the National Prayer Breakfast, a tradition we could only wish a POTUS could break. As long as he was there, he tried to say something.

Every Indian I’ve consulted about it thought Obama let his own religion off way too easily, but he’s being roasted for alleged “false moral equivalence” because he dared to say out loud what the atrocities of ISIS, slavery and Jim Crow, the bloody conquest of the Americas, and the horrific violence that caused the partition of what had been Gandhi’s India all had in common – a faith based rationale.

This is the same POTUS who used a Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech to attempt a defense of “just war.” Elect a professor and you get a professor.

I had to be dragged kicking and screaming to defend “just war” myself because of what I know of war up close and personal. I suppose one implication of recognizing “just war” is that, while the world is not Manichean, there can be short-term advantage in pretending that it is. Perhaps I should not complain too strongly of the pretense in some situations, because the need of extraordinary measures to pump up young men for homicide is a good thing.

Get the Story:
Steve Russell: Indian Thoughts on the Prayer Breakfast and the Pledge of Allegiance (Indian Country Today 2/22)

Join the Conversation