Friday, October 9, 2009

Obama wins Nobel Peace Prize

Alright, right off the bat, politics. Ok, I just read the BBC version of this story. I cannot say that awarding the prize to Obama was a wise choice. Granted, his contenders have as many clear problems (and maybe more) than he does. Morgan Tsvangirai of Zimbabwe was actually considered the favorite to win the award. He has risen from a nickel mine foreman to be Prime Minister (at least a share of the title). He joins Robert Mugabi, the incumbent PM who has ruled with violence and has completely torched the Zimbabwe economy--one of the world's worst. However, despite his rise to share in governing his country, Mr. Tsvangirai was taped in 2002 discussing with Canadian media sources ways in which someone could carry out an assasination attempt on Mugabi. He was cleared of treason twice, once acquitted and once the charges were deemed "unconstitutional."

OK, maybe not the stiffest competition. It seems to me that the underlying problem is that when you are awarding a "peace" award, the candidates must exhibit traits that are peaceful or act in ways that bring about peace. Although I do not deny that Mr. Obama does desire peace, talks about peace and has met with world leaders to discuss peace, our world is no safer, no more peaceful than we were two or three years ago. I know. Give him time. But the award should be for doing something that promotes or creates peace, not just thinking about it or passionately supporting it.

I suppose what I am thinking is that Obama may turn things around in Iran, Afganistan, Iraq, Jerusalem, or even Mexico or right here in the good 'ole US of A. He may get a college football playoff, Major League Baseball players to stop taking growth hormones, or get the Mexican cartels to turn themselves and all their drugs over or maybe erect a wall to prevent illegal immigrants from being "mules" and allowing the drugs to even touch our soil in the first place. Maybe Mr. Obama will get Russia to actually completely de-arm their nuclear arsenal and we can do the same.

And if Obama does any one of these things (except the playoff, maybe), he will deserve to be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. And even win it, if he manages more than one of those assignments, as daunting as they are. But, so far, his choice for the Nobel Peace Prize was about as inappropriate and premature as awarding Tim Tebow the Heisman trophy before the season started. Let it play out. Let us see how this all pans out. Is it good that world leaders support Obama? Of course. Is it nice that America is actually getting begruding respect where once it was glaring ridicule and hatred? Why, yes, it is nice.

Let it be known that I am a republican. I am conservative. But, above all that, I am a patriot. I love America. And, I want to see her succeed. There is a bit of pride that an American won. It seems we have been shut out since 1993 for the Nobel Peace Prize in literature and that galls me. So, Obama won. Prematurely, to be sure, but in my mind it is an American "win," whether it is deserved or not. Hooray. Now go out and do something to deserve it, I guess. And that does not mean pushing a national health care plan through or allowing gays to get married. Do something in areas where you are strong--global PR, bringing people together and galvanizing peace. That will be your victory, Mr. President.