Barack Obama’s comparison of his bowling game with the Special Olympics (which is unfair; there are people in the Special Olympics who can handily beat him) has gotten a lot of press. There are those, however who view this as a passing gaffe.
But, as the French would remind us, “what fills the heart will rise to the lips.” (Matthew 12:34). I don’t think this is a passing gaffe, but not for the reasons most people think.
For most of my adult lifetime, liberals have pummeled the rest of society with the endless drumbeat of how uncaring, bigoted, and selfish we are. They’ve used this inducement of guilt to promote a wide variety of agendas, including those relating to race, gender, sexual orientation, and more recently girth. The “disabled rights” movement (I know I’ll get winces for bad terminology, so hear me out) is one of those, and the Senior Bush passed the Americans With Disabilities Act as a centrepiece of our compassionate response.
When an Elitist Snob like Barack Obama, who has spent the time he wasn’t organising a community with his fellow élites, comes out with a remark like this, the first question in my mind is this: does this reflect what gets bandied about in élite cocktail parties and soirées?
My hunch–a hunch informed by my years in Palm Beach–is that it does. It’s on par with his remark about guns and God. There was a time when liberals had to be more clever about concealing what they really thought of the rest of the country. But Barack Obama is more transparent about that, and he’s gotten away with it because of who he is and because our country doesn’t have the pride in itself it used to to bar someone from the highest office just because he–and his colleagues–think they’re inherently better than the rest of us. It’s like Lu Xun’s story about the smiling Chinese in the photographs with their countrymen just executed by the Japanese. The living Chinese, oblivious to the shame and suffering of their fellow sons of Han, are just glad they’re on the winning side.
What this says is that many of the left don’t believe in the cause of the disabled–and the politically correct attitudes they force on society–any more than they believe in so many other things they’ve “crusaded” for over the years. Do this long enough and you’ll have a credibility problem, but that time hasn’t come just yet.
As Christians, we need to affirm the basic worth of every human being, irrespective of their bodily condition. Diasbled rights advocates got a taste of how that plays out in the Terri Schiavo fiasco, but there’s more to come.
And as for the liberals:
“And why do you look at the straw in your brother’s eye, while you pay no attention at all to the beam in your own? How can you say to your brother ‘Brother, let me take out the straw in your eye,’ while you yourself do not see the beam in your own? Hypocrite! Take out the beam from your own eye first, and then you will see clearly how to take out the straw in your brother’s.” Luke 6:41, 42, TCNT.