There goes Cornell
West again. This time he’s criticizing President Barack Obama for “being
concerned about his legacy;” for being concerned about getting his name
on “Mount Rushmore.” Talk about a petty man.
If this is so, Mr.
Obama truly deserves the honor of being on the iconic Mount Rushmore,
but not for the reasons Mr. West would assign when viewed from his
narrow, anti-Obama stance.
After all, Cornel West has consistently
criticized the President for his performance: first, for allegedly not
doing enough for Black people, and now for allegedly being concerned
about his legacy. Mr. West’s attacks became increasingly personal since he disclosed that the president had not invited him to the inauguration.
Purportedly, this has to do with his re-election —
because the status of being on Mount Rushmore is only accorded to great
presidents who, for one thing, were elected to two terms.
President has had to rescue the nation, fight to defuse the “Party of
No” minefield he has had to function in, chart a vision for the future
and fight back the significant re-election challenge of Super PACs such
as Carl Rove’s running $25 million of negative Ads and Ricketts $10
million proposal to use Rev. Wright as a negative tool, which attempt
will resurface in another form.
Two things quickly. First, while
we’re told Mitt Romney repudiated the Ad featuring Rev. Wright as an
anti-Obama strategy, we must not be mislead into believing he was being
civil, humane and considerate towards the President. Then again, the
media spin is that this was just an idea that was dismissed. Quite the
contrary! According to New York Times reporter Jeff Zeleny, this idea
got “pretty far in the discussion phase.” Fact is, since Rev. Wright is a
religious figure, religion becomes an issue and this introduces Mr.
Romney’s Mormon faith as a legitimate subject of discussion.
the Mormon’s exclusion of Blacks is a Pandora Box issue Romney does not
want to open. So self interest guided his decision to not go after Rev.
Second, one has to wonder if Cornel West knows the origin
of the idea that led to Mount Rushmore and the honor to American
Presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Teddy Roosevelt and
Abraham Lincoln; their images adorn the mountainside near Keystone in
While Mr. West is alleging that the
President is not doing enough for Blacks, the question should be posed:
“What is Mr. West doing for Blacks?” He is trying to tear down the Black
president. How many Black PhD candidates has Mr. West successfully
advanced in his elevated academic leadership position?
attacks from the left, the right and center, Mr. Obama can still boast
that he stands on his record of: sustained job growth, with more than 4
million jobs created over the last two years; emphasis on education for
the young and industrious; the bill to eventually extend health care for
all Americans, help for the Middle Class; financial and economic
regulation to protect consumers and prevent Wall Street excesses;
“insourcing” of jobs; and tax assistance for businesses that hire
This election will be close. Mr. Obama will be re-elected
and as one politician said recently, “We will download the power of the
President’s second term.”
Mount Rushmore? And why not one day, should a grateful nation decide to honor how far we’ve traveled as a country by honoring the
first African American President in such a manner? When young students are given
the Washington Tour and ponder the inspiring figure and personality of
Barack Obama, Dr. Cornell West will long be a memory.