jedidiah on the presidentDuring the latter part of George W. Bush’s presidency, I had liberal friends who would sit on the edge of their seats waiting to have a knee-jerk reaction to everything he said and did. And I mean everything.

The man couldn’t mention the weather without someone insisting he was alluding to the insignificance of climate change. If he made a silly joke that fell flat, they would leap to a discussion about how he was disrespecting the office of the presidency. If he delivered a solid statement, I would watch them twisting and turning to try to find something, somewhere, to pick on, even if they knew damn well he had done a good job.

Yes, they had some legitimate policy concerns and differences of opinion with Bush that I was interested in hearing about. They made for good discussions. But it was clear that they were dying to find something wrong at all times, every minute, no matter what. And if they didn’t, they would create something, hit an internal outrage button, and see to it that the world knew, on a constant basis, that they were dissatisfied with him.

They looked absolutely ridiculous and dishonest. And yes, some do the exact same thing now when it comes to Obama.

The other day, Obama gave a brief statement on our involvement in Syria and Iraq. I found it to be a solid, concise statement in which he kept his cards close to his chest, exuded confidence, and said what needed to be said. I expressed that on Twitter. Many didn’t like that I gave our President some credit. Some may have preferred that I wait with bated breath to find something, somewhere, I could somehow disagree with. Some do that for a living, I know.

The thing is, that’s not why I’m here.

I’m not here for retweets or to play the ‘us versus them’ game. I’m here to tell you the truth, what I actually think, and to evaluate this President and other leaders with an honest mind. Otherwise, what’s the point of this whole thing?

This morning, people on Twitter were equally bothered by the fact that I’m not in full-blown outrage over the President saluting with a cup in his hand as he exited Marine One. The hate mail and nasty tweets rolled in. That’s fine, but it doesn’t change the fact that I’m not outraged. I don’t think our President intentionally set out to disrespect our military. I put myself in his shoes for a minute and imagined that it would be entirely possible for anyone to exit a plane without even realizing a cup is still in your hand, salute instinctively, and move on without thinking twice about it.

I can think of countless times I have done something like that because, well, I’m human. So is he.

My outrage button is reserved for things like arming Syrian rebels who are supposedly “moderate” according to someone, somewhere, who has yet to define what they stand for. Or instituting Obamacare, which I find to be a disastrous approach to much-needed health care reform.

There’s something wrong with a political sphere in which people on two ideological sides are determined to find something wrong with the other party at all costs, every minute, even if it means they sit on the edge of their seats twisting and contorting like my Bush-hating friends did years ago. It’s not helpful and it’s not honest.

I got into this business because I couldn’t stand predictable talking points and preaching to the choir at the expense of listening and discussing.

So instead, I’m going to continue to tell you what I actually think. Because that’s what I’d want from you. Sometimes you’ll agree. Sometimes you’ll disagree. But if you’re looking for knee-jerk politics, you’ve got the wrong girl.

Jedediah Bila is co-host of “Outnumbered” on Fox News at 12pm ET. She is an author, columnist, and Fox News Contributor. Follow Jedediah on Twitter @JedediahBila.

Via Jedediah Bila at Breitbart News

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7 years ago

I too had a co-worker who jumped on everything to bash Geoge W Bush and I thought less of her for it. It’s childish for anyone to bash someone for for trivial issues. However, this is not the first time Obama has not saluted and he has made no bones about not caring for the military. It was excusable and overlooked when he was newly president. What this boils down to is that this president does not respect the military therefore saluting is not important to him or he would make a point of “remembering” especially after 6 years. I am not in the military but I inderstand the insult a military person would feel when Obama “forgets” to salute. Remember though, he IS the Commander in Chief and SHOULD respect this tradition. If there is outrage I feel it’s justified as long as it’s not just another chance to bash him. The problem is, Obama has set the tone and too many people don’t know or respect traditions.

7 years ago
Reply to  HAM

didn’t you mean to say “he ISIS the Commander and Chief?”

7 years ago
Reply to  HAM

I am a veteran and take offense at his cavalier salute. I also take exception when he tossed a flower at the remembrance site of 9/11. All of the other dignitaries gently placed their flowers down on the ground, stooping to do so. Obama did not stoop, but stood and cast the flower down.

The question becomes, how would he place a flower if it were at the feet of a statue of him?

Terrance Holcomb
7 years ago

Sounds good to me, I also rather comment if he has made a major mistake that makes us look bad, or can endanger us, and our soldiers.

Thomas D
7 years ago

I enjoyed this article and I agree with Jedediah’s points about knee-jerk reactions to everything a president ( or any other public figure) says or does. We have serious problems in our nation – like large deficits, an astronomical national debt, and out of control spending – and I rarely here any Democrats or Republicans talking about them.

Obama’s exiting the plane with a coffee cup and giving a half hearted salute was a mistake. Hopefully, he will learn from it and it will never happen again. Bush 43 exited the plane holding his dog and made the same mistake.

7 years ago
Reply to  Thomas D

You are incorrect that Bush 43 made the same mistake. If you knew military protocol, a person can hold something in his left hand (dog) and still salute with his right hand and be correct. That’s what Bush did. Obama had a cup in his right hand–could have moved it to his left hand, and things would have been ok. But he didn’t. In fact he was almost past the saluting Marines before he realized he hadn’t saluted. Of course Obama has come out of Marine One and not saluted at all. He has not put his right hand over his heart during the playing of the National Anthem.

He does not respect the military, protocols, or our country. And that’s a major problem with all of us in the US. We don’t respect each other as we should. If we did, we would be in a different place than we are today!

7 years ago
Reply to  Frank

You are correct, Obama blew like he was getting off a carnival ride.

7 years ago

My problem with it is that Obama is simply disrespectful to everyone who is in his service of any kind. He is an elitist and entitled. I would hope that the President of the United States, when passing those whose brothers in arms he is ordering to war, would have a moment of realization of who that person represents and how much he owes all of those who serve.

This, however, is not that president.

7 years ago

I may be wrong, and if I am would appreciate correction by a current or former military member, but my understanding is that a salute is not even required from the president. A return salute is required from an officer in uniform who is covered as required when outdoors (wearing a hat). Even though the president is commander in chief, he is still a civilian as envisioned by the founding fathers, is not in uniform and therefore strictly speaking should not return a salute. I, like the author of this column, also find this whole flap ridiculous and unnecessary.

7 years ago
Reply to  Dave

You are correct but the fact remains, he initiated the salute. Also he has aides, why didn’t he give the cup to an aide to hold until he was finished exiting the aircraft. As a Gold Star Wife, a 23 year naval vet, and a mother of sailor who is forwarded deployed (and I am not allow to know where), I find it very disrespectful. But, then again, if you haven’t worn the uniform or made the sacrifice, you probably would think this is ridiculous.

Rick Anderau
7 years ago

I agree completely with your article, with one exception. I was very disappointed in the president for his apparent disregard for the meaning of the military salute. It is a show of mutual respect. When one is saluted, a return salute shows mutual respect. Since Obama has no military experience, he has no knowledge of this. At the very least he should have removed the cup to his left hand before returning the salute. And you are correct, he’s not “required” to salute, but he sure us expected to!

Steven Tomlinson
7 years ago

While getting all caught up in fighting the many spot fires we lose sight of the main fire burning and by the time we do focus on it, it is out of control and burns us up. Focus on the important matters and do not get caught up in nit picking…There is plenty to keep our attention on.

7 years ago

I so agree with what you said as I find myself finding anything to make him look bad as I think he is the worst president in the history of America. He cares more for the Illegals then out Troops & I also feel he care more for the black community and that make him a racist. I also feel he a Muslim & a Communist and is trying to turn the country into the same. He also is trying to supersede the Constitution and them is unacceptable. I just hope we can survive his Presidency

Gabe J
7 years ago

Great article– and completely agree on the knee-jerk reaction to someone you just don’t like. I am among those liberals who couldn’t stand Bush. I thought (think) he was an idiot. Just like many conservatives think the same of Obama. I’m not outraged by the cup salute. Especially knowing that the President isn’t obligated to salute anyways.

Richard Bibb
7 years ago

My outrage at the “latte salute” was in response to what I sense is a pattern, not an isolated incident. A pattern of dismissal of the importance of the ‘optics’ of his job. And it is not like he isn’t aware of this. Wasn’t it just a couple of weeks ago when he issued what, at least for him, could be viewed as a huge mea culpa on going to the golf course right after announcing the savage murder of an American by the ISIS thugs? So yeah, maybe he was so distracted and focused on how he wants to bring down fire and brimstone on those same ISIS terrorists as he heads to speak at the UN. But one would think he might learn his position is enhanced if he starts paying attention to the little things that so define his Office. He could start by learning to salute and caring enough to realize these “photo ops” communicate volumes to friend and foe alike….

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