Baseball player Yogi Berra once said, "You can see a lot just by looking" -- simple wisdom that President Barack Obama is not likely to heed. In order to see, you have to want to look at the truth that's actually out there. — With reality so different from how our president wishes to portray it, he has little interest in seeing things as they really are.
The president delivered a "Kumbaya" appeal this past week to the current session of the United Nations General Assembly. The pitch, about peaceful resolution of disputes, tolerance and free speech, was clearly aimed at Muslim nations.
The following day, Egypt's newly elected Muslim Brotherhood President Mohamed Morsi stood before the General Assembly and gave his reply. No thanks.
Sure, Egypt will respect free speech, as long as it does not offend "one specific religion or culture."
The message we got from candidate Obama in 2008 was that the rift between the Muslim world and the West was one of misunderstanding, of lack of empathy on our part toward them. Candidate Obama said he was the man, given his personal history, who could bridge that gap.
In 2009, the first year of the Obama presidency, the Pew Research Center reported that the favorability rating in Egypt toward the United States was 27 percent. Now in 2012 it is 19 percent, down eight points.
More misunderstanding? I don't think so. Egyptians are quite clear about who they are and quite clear about their distaste for the moral relativism Barack Obama peddles as freedom. Conflicting attitudes and worldviews emerge from different beliefs, not misunderstanding.
In the same Pew survey of last June, 11 percent of Egyptians agreed with the statement: "It is good that American ideas and customs are spreading here."
Has Obama just not had enough time, as with producing an economic recovery at home, to get Muslims to learn the words to "Kumbaya"?
The real problem, as I see it, is how do you peddle to others what you don't understand, or won't be honest about, yourself.
While our president refuses to honestly look at Muslim societies, they do look at us. They see American double standards and mixed messages very clearly.
In his United Nations speech, Obama quoted South African leader Nelson Mandela, saying, "To be free is not merely to cast off one's chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others."
This from an American president who is now forcing American employers to buy condoms and abortion pills for their employees, even if it is against that employer's religious convictions.
Or from a nation where poor children are forced to attend public schools where teaching traditional, religious values that they desperately need are prohibited.
Or where the people of the state of California voted to define marriage as between a man and a woman, only to have this referendum overturned by a federal court.
Can Obama stand with credibility before any Muslim nation and claim that he represents religious freedom?
How about economic freedom? Economic freedom -- which measures a nation's respect for private property and limits arbitrary government power to interfere with economic transactions -- is critical because it correlates perfectly with prosperity. Nations with more economic freedom are uniformly more prosperous.
The latest Economic Freedom of the World report, published annually by over 70 think tanks from around the world, shows that in 2010 the United States dropped to No. 18 in world ranking. This after years of the U.S. being one of the most economically free nations in the world.
So why should Muslim nations take seriously an increasingly weak America that does not practice what it preaches?
They don't and won't.
If we want Muslims to respect us and respect freedom's cores values -- protection of life and property -- America should once again represent those values.
The growing percentage of our voters is not white and they largely vote for Democrats. (comments)
Free choice and private initiative seems to violate the religious convictions of liberals. (comments)
Why does America convey neutrality between a nation that is indisputably free and a government that is not? (comments)
In a Pew Research survey of last October, 25 percent of blacks expressed favorability toward the Tea Party, just 6 points less than whites. (comments)
Everyone, except the teachers unions, seems to grasp that public education in America, particularly in low-income communities, suffers because of lack of competition. (comments)
Mainstream means shrugging your shoulders at $17 trillion in federal debt, $4 trillion in federal spending, and a tax code of over 73,000 pages. (comments)
Cochran's agenda is to serve up government pork and protect the interests of his friends in Washington. (comments)
Thought police have no place in a free society. (comments)
Americans elected a president, twice, who was not afraid of being bold, of taking on hard issues, and of being ideological. (comments)
Religion and the institutions of traditional marriage and family are being challenged and, rather than being seen as enablers of our freedom, are now regularly portrayed as obstacles to it. (comments)
No Americans have suffered more from the improper use of government and abuse of political power than black Americans. (comments)
Democrats and the left wing press know that fanning these still racially sensitive flames is the way to turn out black voters. (comments)
Should conservatives pander to the current liberal trends of the country to try and win votes in the short term? (comments)
The incidence of black conservatism is far deeper and widespread than most believe. (comments)
Congressional Budget Office report in February projects that Obamacare will shrink the American economy by 2.5 million jobs. (comments)
Limiting the amount of funds that free citizens can contribute stifles competition and protects incumbents. (comments)
Liberal code word for 'racist': someone like Paul Ryan, who wants to make Americans better off by giving them freedom, choice, responsibility, and less government. (comments)
Real political leadership means pushing public opinion toward one's conviction of what is right. (comments)
My colleagues find in their investigations around the nation that Kermit Gosnell was by no means one of a kind. (comments)
When Mitch McConnell and Republicans controlled the House, Senate and White House, government grew. (comments)