Sanity Injection

Injecting a dose of sanity into your day’s news and current events.

Transatlantic point and counterpoint

Posted by sanityinjection on September 10, 2008

Submitted for your approval:

The following commentary from Mr. Jonathan Freedland, columnist for the British newspaper, the Guardian:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2008/sep/10/uselections2008.barackobama

And, yours truly’s response to Mr. Freedland, sent via email because the Guardian has “closed off” further public comments on the article:

Dear Mr. Freedland:

I hardly know where to begin in responding to your above-referenced column. Perhaps I should start with your main point: that the “world”, or “Europe”, or some other nonexistent polity, will punish the USA if we are naughty and don’t do as we are told – if we persist in the delusion that we have the right to choose the leader of our own country rather than allowing you, our betters, to choose them for us. Tell me, Mr. Freedland, does the UK allow the EU to choose the Prime Minister of Britain? Should it?  (Never mind that the EU can’t even agree on the simplest aspects of governing itself, much less come to a consensus on relations with the US.)

You suggest that this peculiar American attitude of not enjoying being told what to do is some new phenomenon, when in fact it is a fundamental current running through our entire history going back to the American Revolution, another occasion when superior Brits such as yourself tried to tell us what to do. (How well did that work out for you, guv’nor?) Further, the evidence suggests that our judgment is usually better than yours. Americans were governed better under George Washington than under George of Hanover, and the entire world acknowledges that America got it right when we chose Ronald Reagan over Jimmy Carter in spite of the strong European preference for the latter.

In a final act of o’erweening arrogance, you suggest that if Obama is defeated it might be because we are all a bunch of racist rednecks. Let us shine the harsh light of history on your sense of superiority, Mr. Freedland: How many minorities have been Prime Minister of Britain? (I suppose you can count Disraeli if you like.) How many minorities have been elected MPs in the whole history of your country? And you dare call us racist?

In closing, I leave you with an adage whose age does not belie its truth: Pride, Mr. Freedland, goeth before a fall.

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