Before continuing, if you would like to watch his entire address, you may do so by Clicking Here.
Breitbart.com had a headline on this story. Here it is:
Click on the above headline to read the full story.
The headline would lead one to assume that Obama was encouraging the members of the military to not adhere to one of our important laws. It's 18 U.S. Code 2388.
Had this been true Obama would have made a serious error - even criminal per this same law. But, the headline was and is incorrect.
Here are the words Obama used which prompted the disingenuous headline:
“Each of us has…the universal right to speak your minds and to protest against authority; to live in a society that’s open and free; that can criticize our president without retribution.”
To put his quote in context, just before the quote Obama was discussing the freedoms that all of us here in America have - NOT the military, per se.
That quote, in context, is a VERY long way from the headline's message. Is it that Breitbart is trying to emulate MSNBC, among others, by editing/mischaracterizing statements to fit a desired narrative?
As most of us are aware, members of the military have certain "freedom of speech" restrictions not forced upon us all. However, Obama used the words "Each of us", and not "You" - meaning members of the military specifically. There's a big difference.
Now, during Obama's speech he offered many things with which I disagree. However, he was offering opinions - and that is his right in this Country, after all; at least so far.
To be a slight bit less magnanimous as I sounded just then, he stated his opinions as if they were facts, which they are not. Some noteables in this are:
- "No foreign terrorist organization has successfully planned and executed an attack on our homeland." The key here is "organization". However, a lone-wolf terrorist who claims allegiance to a terrorist organization while that same terrorist organization promotes what the lone-wolf did, seems to stretch Obama's point a bit.
- "A changing climate is increasing competition for food and water." Really? Where's the evidence - however slight - for that one?
- "And false prophets are peddling a vision of Islam that is irreconcilable with tolerance and modernity and basic science." Hogwash! Ask any woman or gay person in an Islamic country about "tolerance".
- "Just think about what we’ve done these last eight years without firing a shot. We’ve rolled back Iran’s nuclear program. That’s not just my assessment, that’s the assessment of Israeli intelligence, even though they were opposed to the deal." Iran is going full-on on their nuclear program - even by Obama's own assessment. Israel hated and hates the "deal" and can't wait for Trump to tackle the Iran problem.
In summary, the author of the original article, Warner Todd Huston, does no one, including himself, any good by offering what these days has come to be called "Fake News" - even if it is only a "headline".