McGill history professor Gil Troy - a passionate moderate, author of Why I Am A Zionist and a Shalom Hartman Research Fellow in Jerusalem - looks at the American presidency, American history, Zionism, Judaism and Israel today.
President Barack Obama’s historic embrace of gay marriage last week saddened me. For a President of the United States to back into such a monumental announcement reflected weakness not strength, diminishing the man, the message and the office. Even as gay activists and Democrats try spinning Obama’s wobbly stand as heroic, Israel’s newly-energized prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu should not learn leadership lessons from his frenemy. Netanyahu must start leading on key issues rather than skirting them as he has been doing or playing it too cute by half as Obama just did.
This twist in the gay marriage saga began on “Meet the Press,” when Vice President Foot-in-mouth, aka Joe Biden, proclaimed when asked directly: “I am absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women, and heterosexual men and women marrying another are entitled to the same exact rights, all the civil rights, all the civil liberties.”
Biden is lucky he is a Democrat. He is windier, wordier, less disciplined than Dan Quayle but because Biden’s views are more in synch with many reporters – as on this issue – he has largely been spared the ridicule he deserves. Biden opposed the Osama Bin Laden raid, then called it the most “audacious” military operation in “500 years.” He greeted Rep. Gabrielle Gifford, the Congresswoman recovering from being shot in the head, upon her return to Congress by saying, “She’s now a member of the cracked head club like me.” He once was caught on microphone dropping “the f-bomb” after introducing the President in the White House....