Monday, October 12, 2009

Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize – Why The Fuss?

With the recent announcement that President Barack Obama has been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, some people were incensed at the news, saying that Obama has done nothing to deserve it. Some also seemed to blame Obama for the award, which is just plain silly, seeing that he didn’t ask for it nor did he award it to himself.

Personally, I am thrilled that he will receive this recognition. Some pundits have commented that the simple fact that he was not George W. Bush put Obama on the top of the list. I think it is much more than that. Looking back to his July 2008 speech that he gave in Berlin, Germany, before he was elected, he was greeted by a massive throng and his words moved many people. His winning of the presidential election was a result of a huge number of Americans saying that they wanted change. His style has inspired many differing peoples inside the Unites States and in other parts of the world. He has brought respectability back to the people of the United States.

To those that say he hasn’t done anything yet, they are partly right. He didn’t sit by and watch the economy tank, as did the Bush administration. He didn’t get us into a war in the Middle East without having a clear strategy to facilitate the transfer of power in Iraq or without having an exit strategy, as in the Bush administration. He didn’t destabilize the oil market by a war, as did the Bush Administration. He didn’t create the Patriot Act, which threatens the freedoms of Americans, as did the Bush Administration. I could go on, but you get the idea of all the things that President Obama did not do. Of course, this only gives more credence to those who believe that Obama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize because he stands for everything that the Bush administration was not. But I believe that Barack Obama’s presidential campaign has inspired many around the world, and has brought hope that maybe, just maybe, there is someone out there who has the gift of communication that may help bring people together.

According to the Nobel Prize web site, Obama received the award "for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples." Sure, it does not mean that we have instant world peace, but it is a step in the right direction.

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