By:Chelsea Ratterman, Assistant Editor
Recently, President Barack Obama visited Oklahoma, and to the dismay of many of the state’s population, Oklahoma’s most important elected official, Gov. Mary Fallin, was not there to meet him. Her past remarks have shown certain displeasure with our president. Many believe that this may have been a deliberate snub to our nation’s MVP. If this is true, this shows an extreme lack of respect for an office that should demand the most respect of any.
In a time when many are disillusioned with the government and its leaders, there are still the few who get excited at the simple prospect of a sitting president being in eyeshot, and that is how it should be. They still recognize the prestige and respect the office demands as being the one representative of the American people.
Respect has been lost in the last few decades for the Executive Office of the President. Political views, affiliations, or religious choice should be set aside, especially in matters of state and the duties required. On the campaign trail, candidates running for office are spouting venom at the president for his choices, lack of progress, and just overall demeanor while in office. In each of Gov. Fallin’s press releases or speeches concerning the president she has been nothing but vile in tone.
“I hope that while President Obama is in Oklahoma he takes some time to listen to our citizens, many of whom work for the energy industry which he claims to support,” Gov. Fallin said, in a press release following the announcement of President Obama’s visit. She goes on to accuse him and his party of a supporting an “aggressively anti-energy agenda,” despite the Obama administration’s push for cleaner energy that would decrease our dependence on oil itself.
These practices are unacceptable. There are respectful ways of expressing displeasure in the choices of those who direct our country, and the members of Congress and governors do not seem to grasp this. Sarcasm, accusation and hostility in press release and speech form do nothing but rile the opposition to a similar reaction, which leads to the round robin the U.S. has been experiencing for years now. We need to return to a time where the Executive Office of the President, and other elected officials, still commanded their due respect. Twenty years ago elected officials would not have had the gall to speak in the tones they do now. It is not a matter of freedom of speech, but a matter of manners.