One of the damaging aspects of our American culture has been and continues to be the introduction of the infamous little plastic trinket known as the Participation Trophy. At some point in time perhaps too many parents had been reading books from Dr. Spock, and decided the best way to enhance the self-esteem of young kids was to give them something for just being there. So all of a sudden, it was decided that at certain sporting events for our kids, no scores would be kept, tryouts were unfair and everyone got a trophy.
Remember the Kia automobile commercial showing the dad who rips off the “Participant” label on his son’s trophy and writes in the word “Champions” – after all, they had won every game. But sadly, this absurd practice has departed our youth athletic fields and become symbolic of an American culture where people expect accolades for doing nothing…or perhaps getting recognition for what someone thinks they may be able to accomplish.
For instance, we don’t give out the coveted Medal of Honor because someone did really well during a training exercise…believing that will translate into courage and bravery above and beyond on the actual field of combat.
So, as we wrap up eight years of the Obama administration, I would bestow upon him a participation trophy for showing up. And in truth, he received that honor in 2009 in the form of the Nobel Peace Prize after less than a year in office.
That award was given — note I did not say earned — to a brand new American president named Barack Hussein Obama. He once quipped he was an empty slate upon which people could write – an interesting perspective. And so, “The 2009 Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to United States President Barack Obama for his “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.” The Norwegian Nobel Committee announced the award on October 9, 2009, citing Obama’s promotion of nuclear nonproliferation and a “new climate” in international relations fostered by Obama, especially in reaching out to the Muslim world.”
Let’s be very honest with ourselves here, the Alfred Noble committee made a decision based on what proven objective criteria? President Obama had not been in office for one year and he was awarded a trophy, basically for participating – we had no idea what the end result of his proclamations and policies would be. However, for those of you who watched the last presidential debate and the topic area of “foreign hot spots,” you may just be aware of those results – let’s review.
The Noble committee gave praise to President Obama for “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy” — perhaps they would have been more pleased with a degradation of U.S. strength and regard in the world, because that’s what happened. It was President Obama who made the decision to withdraw all U.S. troops from Iraq, and in doing so, unleashed the savagery of the world’s most barbaric Islamic terrorist organization– oops, can I actually say that? — the Islamic State. As well, Obama made the decision to be more “flexible” after his reelection towards Russia and Vladimir Putin, the result being the invasion of a sovereign nation – Ukraine — and the loss of the Crimea.
Many of us recall Obama’s 2009 speech at the University of Cairo, where the Noble committee lauded him for his “reaching out to the Muslim world”. Sadly, the Noble committee did not mention that Obama requested members of the Muslim Brotherhood, the infamous Islamic terrorist organization – doggone, said it again — front and center and eventually supported this organization’s rise to power in Egypt – so much for that “cooperation between people” thing. Thankfully, the Egyptian people, knowing who the Muslim Brotherhood is and its objectives, overthrew this suit-wearing group of Islamic jihadists, –can I say that? — but to the chagrin of one President Obama who was “BFFs” with Mohammed Morsi.
It was Barack Obama who demanded Bashar Assad must go and drew a red line, that somehow got erased, and sat back to watch horrific genocide occur in Syria. But the greater result from the folly of Syria is the worst combat refugee crisis we’ve witnessed since World War II which has had adverse ramifications and consequences for the proliferation of Islamic terrorism — there I go again — into Europe and here in the United States.
Maybe that strategic blunder of withdrawing all of our troops from Iraq could have precluded such a mistaken read of the “Arab Spring” which was in actuality a jihadist nightmare. And it was in Libya that Obama’s “new climate” in international relations by way of regime change has resulted in a destabilization of that country turning it into an Islamic terrorist — yeah, I said it again — sanctuary and base of operations. Never fear, the great Noble Peace prizewinner of 2009 did an impeccable job with a hashtag diplomacy effort in stopping the Islamic terrorist violence of Boko Haram. Not.
And yes, President Obama’s nuclear nonproliferation efforts have borne out well with the Iranian nuclear agreement. Y’all remember, that little bit of diplomatic relations that President Obama had blocked and filibustered by his loyal acolytes in the U.S. Senate? So now, the world’s number one state sponsor of Islamic terrorism — I guess you realize I’ll keep saying it — is flush with billions of dollars of largesse, to including U.S. cash. As well, no adversarial nation has paid any attention to Obama’s nonproliferation desires, while he has sought to reduce the American nuclear arsenal. As a matter of fact, that short chubby fella with the bad haircut in North Korea has gone just, well pardon the pun — nuclear — with his actions. And why not, since North Korea’s parental guardian state, China, has been free to expand its regional hegemony throughout the Pacific Rim, and elsewhere. This has resulted in the recent “separation” of the Philippines from the United States, as declared by their President Duterte.
So what’s the lesson learned here? It’s simple: don’t give kids – and especially not presidents — trophies and awards for doing nothing.
[Note: This article first appeared on Townhall.com]