Obama bows to sensitivities of ignorant Americans and political advisers

The New York Times reports:

The Golden Temple, a sprawling and serene complex of gleaming gold and polished marble that is the spiritual center of the Sikh religion, is one of India’s most popular tourist attractions. Revered by Indians of all faiths, it is a cherished emblem of India’s religious diversity. So it was no surprise when the gold-plated marvel was promoted as the likely third stop on President Obama’s visit to India, scheduled for early November.

But the United States has ruled out a Golden Temple visit, according to an American official involved in planning. Temple officials said that American advance teams had gone to Amritsar, the holy city that is the site of the temple, to discuss a possible visit. But the plan appears to have foundered on the thorny question of how Mr. Obama would cover his head, as Sikh tradition requires, while visiting the temple.

“To come to golden temple he needs to cover his head,” said Dalmegh Singh, secretary of the committee that runs the temple. “That is our tradition.”

Mr. Obama, a Christian, has struggled to fend off persistent rumors that he is a Muslim, and Sikhs in the United States have often been mistaken for Muslims. Sikhism, which arose in the Punjab region in the 15th century, includes elements of Hinduism and Islam but forms a wholly distinct faith. Since Sept. 11, 2001, Sikhs in the United States have been occasional targets of anti-Muslim discrimination and violence — a Sikh was killed in Arizona a few days after the attack on the World Trade Center by a man who mistook him for a Muslim.

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9 thoughts on “Obama bows to sensitivities of ignorant Americans and political advisers

  1. Colm O' Toole

    Good point Observer.

    Indeed logic would dictate, if he was comfortable wearing a yamaka for religious tradition, why not wear a Dastar when visiting India. But of course I’m sure his advance team found Indian religious symbols to Muslim-y.

    Surely the American people cannot be expected to tell the difference between the Middle East and the Indian Sub-Continent.

  2. charlie

    The American tax payer may not know the differnece between these folks but we have sent billions of dollars to feed the masses of people the wealthy relegious leaders have as subjects. There is no country in history of the world that has done so much for so many as the “ignorant” Americans.

  3. Norman

    Wonder how the American public & fox news are going to take “O” & the P.M. of India in pictures? Will they raise a howl, belittle him, call him some more names? “O” should have stopped the name calling in the beginning, but chose to let it fester, so, in that respect, he allowed the animosity that we live today, could have been prevented. One has to wonder what motives are behind his refusal to visit?

  4. scott

    Come on Colm, there’s plenty of Muslims living in India, you never can be too sure.

    What do you think, the temple a little garish? Is it just me? I mean, it’s impressive.
    “Opulence, I has it”

  5. delia ruhe

    Why can’t he just wear a kippah? It would fulfill the requirement, and he loves sucking up to the Israelis.

  6. Paul Woodward

    Charlie — When foreign aid is measured as a percentage of Gross National Income, based on OECD figures for 2009, the US ranks #18. Israel is the #1 recipient of US foreign aid. Israel (pop. 7.6 million) receives almost half as much aid from the US as does the whole of Africa (pop. over 1 billion)!

  7. DE Teodoru

    It’s funny how economic decline makes Americans cultural largess decline to level of hillbillies. The young 1960s Americans that I first knew were gung-ho global back packers that put Europeans to shame dragging world youth into cultural globalism. Yet now, Obama, the mosaic president, acts as if he’s trying to pass himself off as a WASP– White Anglo-Saxon Protestant.

    One can only wonder how strong his personal identity as both American and man of the world is. I fear most is that in desperately trying to make himself acceptable to the lowest common denominator of American shut-ins he doesn’t realize that he’ll never fit in. Under the best of circumstances the most he can achieve is to be seen as that good president Barak Obama; but under the worst he’ll be considered that “crummy N–ger President” Obama as if he had proven them right after all . The race epithet will always appear as an “I told you so” once unrestrained by his aura as a successful leader. And, having attempted the wisdom of Solomon by cutting in half all the legislative babies Polosi laboriously gestated in Obama’s futile efforts to appease the people for whom, no matter what he does, he’ll always be “that SCHWARTZA PRESIDENT,” he may have lost the personal prestige he had, dissipating his esteemed authority to be seen as the “Black Satan” President who kills legislative babies, making them non-viable by cutting them in half in a “go along to get along” appeasement of corporate cannibals. Only legislative success would restrain slander and he was too ready to make his successes non-viable by cutting them in half. He looks too much like that unprincipled consummate politico Bill Clinton by following the tactical advice of the Clintonistas in his Cabinet whose sole strategic goal is to trip him up so Hillary can replace him in 2012.

    Had he sought to earn his premature Nobel Prize by standing his ground he would have had the American people behind him and those seeking to destroy “that Schwartza President” would have retreated, rolling their tails between their legs. I can only pray that he’ll achieve enough as President so he can feel proud of the accomplishments he leaves behind to be admired by his daughters.

  8. holger

    Indeed, no other nation has “done so much”, as you call it, to so many in such
    a short history record. You should busy yourself with the record a bit to to
    overcome your ignorance.

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