WAS IT AN UNTIMELY TOTUS MALFUNCTION or a deliberate omission when President Obama, while recently addressing the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute's Annual Awards gala on Sept. 15, left out the words "endowed by their Creator" when reciting parts of the preamble to the Declaration of Independence?
Fast forward seven days. While speaking on Sept. 22 at a fundraiser for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee at the Roosevelt Hotel in New York City, Obama once again omitted the identical reference to the Creator.
The odd thing is, Obama is an intensely scripted orator. Perhaps the most so in our country's history. And he is reputed by more than one credible source to be able to read beyond the fifth-grade level. And he had a full week to be reminded time and time again about his omission by every media outlet imaginable. Where were his handlers? Where was Rahm Emanuel? Oh, that's right, Rahmbo was busy checking his Blackberry for tweets from Richard Daley.
So the question at hand is, did Obama just go off-script and poorly ad lib both times as the White House apology-squad later would disingenuously claim, or did he purposefully omit words he ideologically finds offensive and to whose meaning he personally doesn't subscribe?
Perhaps his body language tells the true answer. In the midst of his canned speech, when he came to the part in dispute, each time Obama hesitated with an overlong pregnant pause, looking as if he was clearly debating saying words he didn't believe in -- grappling with the philosophical moment. Make no mistake, they were very uncomfortable moments, not only for Obama, but for those who watched his obvious internal struggle. Not too unlike watching a singer sing a song to which everyone in the audience knows the words, and at the most crucial section of the song, the singer inexplicably forgets the lyrics. It was that painful -- and worse.
The next logical question then becomes, what in that phrase did Obama find so offensive that he couldn't bring himself to spit out the words without a lot of hemming and hawing?
Answer: The fact that Thomas Jefferson attested to a simple truth, the truth that it is our Creator who grants unalienable rights to the American citizenry, NOT the federal government.
As I noted in a previous article, Obama's Progressive religion doesn't allow for a supreme being, let alone one who would have the audacity to usurp the power of a misfit collection of temporary political hacks. That would defeat the purpose of having an oppressive nanny-state that dictates to its subjects every dot and tittle of their subservient existences. One can then see why including reference to a Creator could and would get Obama all choked up.
It wasn't just the reference to the Creator that tongue-tied the Anointed One, it was the words that followed that also proved problematic. "Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness."
These words appear to be self-evident. Life refers to one's existence. Check. Liberty refers to one's freedom. Check. But what of one's happiness and the pursuit thereof?
A careful historical examination of that phrase reveals some interesting facts. Prior to the signing draft being penned by Thomas Jefferson, the Declaration's principle author, the words "Pursuit of Happiness" were replaced by a mere word, "Property". Jefferson, a big fan of one of the Enlightenment's gurus, John Locke, originally deferred to Locke's phraseology by stating that all American's had the unalienable right from their Creator to "Life, Liberty and Property". So why the switch?
Just days before the signing, at the urging of Benjamin Franklin, Jefferson crossed out "Property" and inserted "Pursuit of Happiness". This phrase has been mainly overlooked by most observers. Some innocuous as well as esoteric meanings have been attributed to this phrase since our founding. Most dismiss the phrase as meaning that God intended us to be "happy". Not necessarily tipsy-goofy happy, nor drooling-out-of-the-side-of-your-mouth-while-oblivious-to-the-world happy nor even orgasmically elated -- just having the absence of misery happy.
But is that what Jefferson meant? The best way to find the answer is to look to Jefferson's own words on the subject.
In a letter to Francisco Chiappe in 1789, Jefferson wrote, "[It is a] great truth that industry, commerce and security are the surest roads to the happiness and prosperity of [a] people."
And almost thirty years later in a letter to John Manners, Jefferson wrote, "If [God] has made it a law in the nature of man to pursue his own happiness, He has left him free in the choice of place as well as mode, and we may safely call on the whole body of English jurists to produce the map on which nature has traced for each individual the geographical line which she forbids him to cross in pursuit of happiness."
Taking the two phrases together, it is obvious that by "Happiness" Jefferson meant something more substantial then a Chris Matthews' thrill up the leg. It makes perfect sense that Jefferson replaced "Property" with "Pursuit of Happiness" because the latter encompassed far broader unalienable rights. "Happiness", according to Jefferson, meant "industry", which is the right to work for oneself or another; "commerce", which is the right to buy and sell goods and services; and "security" which is described by Caroline Thomas (Global Governance, Development and Human Society) as "a condition of existence which entails basic material needs (property), human dignity... and an active and substantive notion of democracy."
Jefferson also made it clear that these Creator-endowed rights were NOT subject to governmental abuse nor restraint.
And therein lies the rub for Obama and the soon-to-be Democratic minority. It's clear now why the left has so much difficulty making their mouths shape the sounds for these words. According to the Declaration of Independence and all those who signed it, man has the God-given right to work as he pleases, buy and sell goods and services as he pleases, and own private property -- all without the fear of government meddling.
QUIZ TIME: Try to name a single bill to come out of the House or Senate since Democrats became the majority in 2006 that doesn't interfere with the intent of Jefferson's "Pursuit of Happiness" concept. (Cue "Jeopardy" music)
Time's up. Answer: Not one.
So, the next time you hear Obama giving one of his snooze-inducing teleprompter speeches, keep in mind that when you hear him stumble, bumble and fart, it might just be because he has just read some words that literally stuck in his Progressive craw.
A sharp palm-blow to the back will usually do the trick.