Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Teleprompter vs. No Teleprompter

Written : Mar. 31, 2009

You know the issue. Everyone thinks President Obama is a wonderful orator. He has a “way with words”. It seems that many have been held spellbound by his speeches. For example, a couple of months ago a friend told me he’s “such” a marvelous speaker. But some were paying closer attention and realized he only speaks well when he’s using a teleprompter, or, when he’s reading what he’s saying. It's not a knock on the president; it’s just a fact. I also noticed that when he speaks without reading, President Obama stutters, hems and haws, and used many “uh’s” and “ah’s”. Not that there’s anything wrong with that... and I honestly don’t know if I would do any better at speaking impromptu than he.

That being said, one just cannot criticize this president without feeling the ire of his adoring, supportive media. Rick Sanchez, a CNN anchor, recently interviewed Carlos Mencia, a superb comedian, on “American Morning”. Sanchez felt compelled to run a David Letterman clip. Mr. Letterman injects politics into his late night comedy at times. The text “Teleprompter” appeared and showed Obama giving a moving speech. Next, “No Teleprompter” was shown, and revealed George W. Bush speaking off the cuff and hemming and hawing, saying “uh” and “ah” a lot.

True, the joke was funny and it made me laugh. But Rick Sanchez and Carlos Mencia made fun of the criticism itself, as if it was ludicrous for anyone to have said anything against Obama. When they made fun of Bush afterward, it just made my point that many tend to defend and distort any criticism of Obama into criticism of Bush. (Watch for this in the media, it happens often!) The fact that Obama had trouble without a teleprompter had nothing to do with the fact that Bush had trouble with and without one! That contrast revealed Obama to have been a far better public speaker than Bush. There, I admitted it! Now, let’s lighten up, and may we ever criticize our current leader without an imminent attack on the previous one?

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