Wednesday, February 13, 2013

#SOTU13, Highlights and Questions

Last night, the President gave his State of the Union address.
My top five favorite moments from the State of the Union address were when:

1. The President said that the Newtown victims, Hadiya Pendleton, Gabby Griffords and other victims of gun violence deserve a vote.

2. The President said that he is going to form a non-partisan commission to address voting problems such as voters waiting in line for hours to cast their ballots.

3. The President mentioned ways to address poverty, i.e. increasing the minimum wage and making sure that quality pre-school education is available to all children regardless of family income. Obama proposed creating high school programs that would enable students to graduate with associate degrees.

4. The President said that he would end the war in Afghanistan by the end of 2014.

5. The President mentioned proposed legislation to eliminate the wage gap between men and women.

My top five questions for the President and Congress are:

1. Why is the U.S. waiting until the end of 2014 to leave Afghanistan? Al Qaeda is defeated in Afghanistan.

2. Will Congress pass any of the President's bold ideas? For example, President Obama has been talking about rebuilding American's infrastructure and closing tax loopholes for years. Yet, Congress has done nothing.

3. Is the Obama Administration going to continue to use drones to kill Americans without evidence or trial? The President conveniently glossed over that major issue with vague generalities and flowery pleasantries.

4. Does Obama plan to implement austerity measures such as cutting Medicaid and Medicare? The President talked about the need for compromise and about neither party getting everything that it wants. I just hope that he does not compromise too much.

5. Why did Obama deliberately avoid using the words "black" and "African American"? Obama directly addresses the needs of women, LGBTs and Latinos. However, when it comes to his most loyal supporters, African Americans, he has to communicate to us in code language. Why?

Any way, what did you think about the President's State of the Union address?

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