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Obama Backs the First Amendment Too

President Obama Wednesday belatedly, and a little sheepishly, joined Gov. Mitt Romney in asserting his support for free speech amidst attacks against American embassies in Egypt, Libya – a now Yemen – by mobs angered by an American film denigrating Mohammed.

Neither Romney nor Obama initially addressed to core issue at hand, which is that the United States cannot be seen appeasing those who conduct violence in response to speech, which is what the controversial press release by the Egyptian Embassy did.

Romney soon came around to putting in a plug for free expression, and the White House announced later Wednesday that Obama had said he likes free speech too, in an interview conducted for “60 Minutes.”

I do have to say that, more broadly, we believe in the First Amendment. It is one of the hallmarks of our Constitution that I am sworn to uphold, so we’re always going to uphold the rights of individuals to speak their minds. On the other hand, this film is not representative of who we are, and our values, and I think it is important for us to communicate that. That’s never an excuse for violence against Americans, which is why my No. 1 priority and my initial statement focused on making sure that not only are Americans safe, but that we go after anyone that would attack Americans.

Well, that’s important, and I’m glad he did it. But it shouldn’t be something you “have to say.” It should be something you urgently want to say.

34 Responses to Obama Backs the First Amendment Too

  1. Whether he’s late or on time, it means nothing. Notice his caveat “Constitution that I am sworn to uphold”? He has ignored his oath since the moment the words came out of his mouth, yet NOW we’re supposed to believe he respects the Constitution?
    If it weren’t for the media in every pocket this guy has, Elmer Fudd would be cleaning his clock.
    God help us people, God help us. The man is a menace in every sense of the word.

  2. The only free speech Obama has an interest in upholding is speech that supports his agenda, and a compliant media.

    In other words, “free speech” as long as it’s progressive propaganda.

  3. “Free Speech? ….uh…..Is that when I can deliver remarks uh….you know for fund raising and …..uh….The Government picks up the tab cause I can have some President stuff to do in the area?”

  4. This sounds like an apology with a “but” or a “well” attached to it. We teach our children to apologize and leave it at that. No “buts”, no “wells”, no excuses or justifications; just the apology. Here is Obama, “I believe this, on the other hand……”

    So, did you just cancel out your previous statement by drawing attention, once again, to the film?

  5. But it shouldn’t be something you “have to say.” It should be something you urgently want to say.

    More importantly; it should be something you want to practice. This administration has done nothing but stomped on the constitution since he swore an oath to uphold it (twice).

    • I agree with what you say, but, I think the most important thing, is that in order to practice it, or enforce it, or repeat it, you have to first truly believe in it.

  6. How dare he claim that a film that mostly no one has seen “is not representative of who we are and our values”?
    He must have using the royal WE, because whatever is in that film reflects our belief that an American can say whatever they want, not because we were forced to swear to do something, but because it’s what we value.

    • What he should say is that, “In America everyone has the right to say what they want and express their opinions. Any filmmaker has the right to make any film they want to make. Religions are criticized here, non-religions are criticized. Freedom of Religion and speech is what makes our nation great and is paramount to our core. Violence is not.”

  7. What the heck is that statement Hillary just gave? If the movie is the cause of all this violence and deaths, then why did she bring up the movie again?

    • Do you or Girly have a link? I haven’t read or heard her comments. The one I did read was that she wondered “how could this happen”? Really? She’s madam full-charge of the State Department afterall, “the greatest Secretary of State since Washington,” according to CA Congressman Maroon, and she doesn’t know what’s going on?

    • Short memories, current voices, and two Clintons:

      Hillary Clinton: Anti-Islam Film is ‘Disgusting, Reprehensible (headline from The Atlantic today)

      NYT: November 25, 1993
      President Clinton met today with Salman Rushdie in a gesture that the White House said was intended to convey America’s abhorrence of Iran’s refusal to lift the death threat against the novelist.

      Mr. Rushdie also conferred at length with Secretary of State Warren Christopher and Anthony Lake, the national security adviser. Their hourlong conversation, in an office at the White House, represented a sharp shift from the Bush Administration’s refusal to meet with Mr. Rushdie on the ground that it “might be misinterpreted” in the Muslim world. Message Against ‘Intolerance’

  8. Geoff is exactly right. President Kardashian has no respect for our founding documents, or for our founders for that matter. He speaks out of both sides of his mouth. Rather than take questions from the press after his perfunctory statement in the Rose Garden yesterday, he tucked tail and ran…grabbing Ms. Pantsuits like a baby grabs a pacifier. He saved his rehearsed lines for Steve Kroft, one of the MSM “eunuchs in the Obama harem”. All those pretty words from the empty chair, and yet as Clint Eastwood so astutely described him – “Barack Obama is the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the American people.”

  9. 60 Minutes….again??? He’s becoming a lounge lizard! I take that back – he IS a lounge lizard! It’s Letterman, 60 Minutes and Telemundo all in a span of 3 days! Obama has condemned free speech from Republicans since the day he took office. The Embassy murders were not about free speech – they were about 9/11 and served as a reminder that terrorism is alive and well.

    BTW, anyone listening to Hillary??? OMG – it’s unreal!

    • It’s Hillary’s job to make sure no Muslims feel badly about murdering Americans while Obama tries to figure out how to win re election without pissing off Americans and those who want us dead. As he said in LV – tough day. Punk.

      • All this sensitivity to the feelings of Muslims makes me wonder what NASA might cook up to heal the hurt feelings. Since NASA is now all about Muslim outreach maybe they could send a few from the Muslim Brotherhood for one-way ride.

  10. BHO especially believes in freedom of speech as far as apologizing to people who are offended because someone else elected to exercise his freedom of speech goes. Apparently the right to be offended, found in the emanations from the penumbra of the Constitution, extend to non-citizens, requiring a presidential apology after Americans, including an ambassador, are murdered.

    • I think it is important to take a deeper look into his Muslim background and his 20 years of Black Liberation Theology. Sure he wants the Jewish vote, he wants any vote he can get, from the living or the dead. But in his belief system he wants the Jewish people to disappear. My money is on Netanyahu, he is not going to let that happen.

    • It’s a calculated risk (losing the Jewish vote). If he can pick up a few million hispanic votes after his bogus Dreamer amnesty, he can afford to lose the Jewish vote. Eventually, everyone ends up under the Obama bus!

  11. Too late and too ambiguous in my opinion. Why add ” on the other hand, this film is not representative of who we are and our values”? He more than hints that you shouldn´t joke about Muhammed. Oh, we have had a similar debate over here many times, what is permitted to say and do when it comes to Muhammed and Islam. We have had the Danish caricatures and the Swedish Vilks sketches and the Muslim violence and threats because of that. I am sick and tired of this self censorship in Western countries when it comes to this religion. It is a great threat to a free society. I am interested in following what Obama intends to do when he “goes after them” and brings them to justice. Seems like Mission Impossible.

  12. I am getting the idea that this film–whatever it is–was an excuse for a terrorist attack. Why not focus on how they are still active, still want to mess with us, and are still dangerous? What does Justice will be done mean in this context? What are those strongest possible terms?

  13. “this film is not representative of who we are, and our values, …”
    — Well, duh. It’s a representation of who Mohammed was, and of the Islamic values that derived therefrom.

    Also, do you notice how often Obummer says he’s going to “make sure that” something or other? That phrase usually indicates that he really doesn’t care much.

  14. Back in 1989, when Robert Mapplethorpe and Andres Serrano had their exhibits on display at Washington Project for the Arts, many in the conservative Christian movement decried Serrano’s “Piss Christ” as being beyond the pale of what should be allowed. Serrano had been paid nearly $15,000 through a National Endowment for the Arts grant to produce a Crucifix in a jar of urine, and Mapplethorpe’s homoerotic photography was also sponsored in part by the NEA.

    I do not recall reading or seeing any violence, burning of the gallery, threats against either “artist” other than having their federal cash cow taken away. Yet, the left screamed that Christians, Catholics, and other conservatives needed to shut up, and except this “art” under the guise of “free speech.”

    Fast forward 20 years. A film, paid for with private money, is now being assailed as pushing the envelope of what “free speech” should allow. Have we become such a nation of cowards that we are willing to give up the rights granted to us by nature and the Creator so as to appease a group of people that, no matter what we do, will always hate us?

    I remember as a high school senior in Chicago when the members of the Nazi party wanted to march in Skokie IL. For those unaware, Skokie is a predominately Jewish community. The march was blocked by the Skokie Parks Department, and the lawsuits flew. The case made its way through the various levels of our judiciary, and ultimately the Nazis won – free speech. The march was canceled by Collins, the leader of the Nazi Party, only when the city of Chicago allowed them to march at Marquette Park, on the city’s southwest side.

    In discussing the case in a high school civics class (back then we still had such things) my teacher, a Jew, said that it was his opinion that the march should be allowed. Many of us were upset with his comments, and questioned why people as hateful as the Nazis should be allowed to march in a community where so many suffered under Nazism. His reply was simple. If we stop the Nazi from speaking, what’s to keep the government from stopping us to speak.

    Obama and his ilk only want free speech when it fits their agenda. The statement out of Cairo by the embassy is evidence of that. If this man is re-elected, I would look for serious changes in how free speech is defined. And that scares me the most.