Commentary on current events, politics, government, and popular culture from John Sheirer, author of the book, Make Common Sense Common Again.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Rorschach in Chief

I had a discussion today with someone who thought President Obama's classy response to Rush Limbaugh (see post below) was all for show. No matter what, we were not going to agree on the issue.

I've come to realize that the president seems to be the ultimate Rorschach test for America these days. The experiences and personal qualities we bring to our observations actually help to shape those observations. I look at recent events related to the contraceptive issue and see the president behaving as an honorable man taking a significant risk to prevent discrimination against women in a world still sadly fraught with paternalism and mysogyny. Some people see a manipulative jerk who would use his own daughters to score cheap political points. Others see the savior of humanity. Still others see a Kenyan Muslim Socialist who is once again trying to take away our freedoms because he hates America and Jesus and wants to control us all.

But there is an actual reality in the Rorschach test--it's an ink blot on a piece of paper. Like the Rorschach test, what form the president takes depends in large part on what pair of eyes are doing the looking.


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