Barack Obama still doesn’t get it.
Obama pushed globalism throughout his two terms as president. He entered bad trade deals, signed off on dangerous treaties, eased sanctions on dangerous dictatorships. And his Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, sought to pick up that mantle and carry it even further.
But Americans said no. They rejected the notion that the world comes first, and America second. They embraced Donald Trump’s call to “make America great again” — and, frankly, they realized that America is always good, but could be better.
Still, for Obama, America is just another country in the world, no better than Kenya, Indonesia, Iran or Cuba. And Americans are wrong to feel that they are part of the greatest nation in the history of the world. Americans, Obama thinks, should acquiesce to the desire of the world and put the global community above all else.
Obama took a break from hobnobbing with celebrities and kite-surfing with billionaires over the Fourth of July weekend to lecture Americans about their lowly place in the world. And he ripped Trump — without saying his name, of course — for pushing an America First agenda.
“We start seeing a rise in sectarian politics, we start seeing a rise in an aggressive kind of nationalism, we start seeing both in developed and developing countries an increased resentment about minority groups and the bad treatment of people who don’t look like us or practice the same faith as us,” Obama said in Indonesia.
The former president decried “the temporary absence of American leadership,” referring to Trump’s decision to pull the United States out of the pointless and toothless Paris Climate Accord.
“In Paris, we came together around the most ambitious agreement in history to fight climate change,” Obama said. But Trump ended that, endangering the world (none of that’s true, as usual, the accord did next to nothing as the entire agreement was voluntary).
Obama, who refused to utter the words “Islamic terrorism,” said America must embrace Muslims — no matter the cost.
“If we don’t stand up for tolerance and moderation and respect for others, if we begin to doubt ourselves and all that we have accomplished, then much of the progress that we have made will not continue,” he said. “What we will see is more and more people arguing against democracy, we will see more and more people who are looking to restrict freedom of the press, and we’ll see more intolerance, more tribal divisions, more ethnic divisions, and religious divisions and more violence,” he continued.
Well, Muslims seem to be doing just fine without Americans embracing Islam. During Ramadan, Islam’s holiest month of fasting and prayer, there were 161 terror attacks and 1,483 killed, reports The Religion of Peace website, which keeps a running tally. Another 1,557 were wounded.
Obama spent the Fourth of July weekend in a Muslim-majority country, presing Islam.
“My stepfather … was raised a Muslim but he respected Hindus and he respected Buddhists and he respected Christians,” he said, adding, “If you are strong in your own faith then you should not be worried about someone else’s faith.”
“The spirit of this country has to be one of tolerance. It’s enshrined in Indonesia’s constitution, it’s symbolized by mosques and temples and churches beside each other,” Obama said. “That spirit is one of the defining things about Indonesia. It is one of the most important characteristics to set as an example for other Muslim countries around the world.”
“The world is at a crossroads,” Obama said.
But not America. That “crossroads” came and went in Election 2016. Americans chose America First.