President Obama this year decided to hollow out and degrade the Presidential Medal of Freedom by giving a bunch of them to famous people he digs.
Of course, none of them are Republicans.
Obama handed out a total of 20 Medals of Freedom, which makes getting them nearly as easy as getting into the phone book. Okay, not exactly, but you get my drift, the award is pretty diluted.
Here are the winners, who are also coming soon to a gossip column near you. .
Cicely Tyson, Bruce Springsteen, Diana Ross, Robert Redford, Tom Hanks, Lorne Michaels, Michael Jordan, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Robert De Niro, and Ellen DeGeneres. Vin Scully got one too, for calling a lot of baseball games.
There are ten of them. It’s like he divided the awards up — half of them fatuous, half maybe not.
What, exactly, has Michael Jordan done for humanity, other than entertain it and make hundreds of millions doing so? How may pool black kids spent too much money on his overpriced sneakers?
DeGeneres I can understand, maybe, since she at least promotes a cause — gay rights — whether you agree with her or not.
The other ten seem to have a few more qualifications, though most sound like basically lefties. Bill and Melinda Gates got one. Maybe it’s a birthday gift for them or something. I mean, what do you get for the guy and gal who have everything? A Presidential Medal of Freedom, I suppose.
You can find the full list here.
Just for contrast, George W. Bush in his final year in office, 2008, gave out six medals, all to highly distinguished individuals of proven achievement and service. At least two, Donna Shalala and the late Rep. Tom Lantos, were Democrats. That is, a third of them. The other recipients were Retired Marine Corps. Gen. Peter Pace, Judge Laurence Silberman, Dr. Anthony Fauci, and another doctor who at the time was far less well known: Benjamin Carson.
None had a hit record, an academy award, or had dunked a basketball into a legitimate ten-foot high hoop. Imagine that.
Obama’s lucky, and I do mean lucky, recipients will receive their honors at a White House ceremony November 22.