R-E-S-P-E-C-T

If you’re a sports fan, you know that the only real match-up that mattered on Super Bowl Sunday wasn’t between the Seattle Seahawks and the Denver Broncos, but rather the pre-game duel between President Barack Obama and Fox News Channel’s Bill O’Reilly. As Jon Stewart quipped afterwards, “The most powerful man in the world–and the President,” to which I’m sure O’Reilly readily agreed.

 The top-rated O’Reilly has been criticized heavily for his performance during the interview. The Right says he was too soft on the President. “He let him get away with too much!” To which I ask, was he supposed to put him in a head-lock and force him to answer his questions? Maybe a wedgie would have been appropriate, or a simple gouge to the eyes.

 The Left, on the other hand, says O’Reilly was disrespectful. He wasn’t deferential enough to the President, or to the man The Daily Show’s Stewart referred to as “Dude.” In fact, another Fox News employee, Geraldo Rivera, referred to Obama as His Majesty. Some say it was a slip of the tongue, but I think that slip speaks volumes about what supporters–or loyal subjects–of the President think.

 “How dare you question our anointed leader in such a manner? Don’t you know who you’re talking to? “

 Yes: An elected official. Someone who works for us. The President wasn’t sitting down to get his weekly mani-pedi. He agreed do to an interview and should have been prepared to be asked some tough questions.

 “But these questions have already been asked and answered. Move along.”

 They haven’t been answered. Heck, they haven’t even ever really been asked, which is why the Irishman brought them up. Jay Carney, the President’s Press Secretary, might get a daily dose of these questions, but not the President, who rarely deigns to sit down with those who question his tactics.

 Obama didn’t release his birth certificate for many years, mainly because it was a losing issue for the Republicans, and the longer he kept it (and Donald Trump) in the news, the better for him. It was a great political play for him. If it ever came up, just act as if the person asking is part of the Duck Dynasty and say, “Next.”

That’s the same ploy he used on Super Sunday for every topic O’Reilly brought up. But Bill, being an actual journalist, would interrupt the President in an effort to try and get him to answer.

 “Show some respect, if not for the President, then for the office of the President!” the Left cried. Literally, I think they cried. “He’s being mean to Barry. Someone make him stop!”

 I’ll tell you what is disrespectful to the office of the President. More than a year after an American diplomat and three others are murdered because of the incompetence of the State Department, something you oversee, Mr. President, and you have the gall to act as if that issue has been put to bed. Four people were savagely murdered. Who did it? Why did they do it, YouTube videos aside, and what are you doing about it?

 “Asked and answered. I was born in Hawaii. Are you nuts?”

 I’ll tell you what is disrespectful to the office of the President. Having conservative groups targeted by the IRS, something you oversee, Mr. President, and looked into as if they were enemies of the state. “There was no corruption in the IRS.” Pardon me, Mr. President, but if that’s true, then why did Lois Lerner take the 5th after pleading her innocence at a Congressional hearing?

 “Don’t interrupt me. Those questions have been answered. Not by me, or my staff, but by some low-level government workers in Cincinnati, or Toledo, or some other place I hope to never visit again. Man, you’re totally off your rocker!”

 I’ll tell you what is disrespectful to the office of the President. Telling the world that a red line would be drawn if chemical weapons were used on the citizens of Syria, and then, after 1,400 of them are gassed, doing nothing. Having Secretary of State John Kerry, someone who reports to you, Mr. President, tell the world that what we’re looking to do is make an “unbelievably small, limited kind of effort.”

 “C’mon. Syria is so 2013. Why are you stuck in the past? Those questions are not pertinent.”

 Excuse me, but at this point, estimates say that less than 5% of Bashar al-Assad’s poisonous gasses have been removed from Syria, and that’s from the stockpile he’s admitted to turning over. Why didn’t you…

 “If you interrupt me again, I’m going to leave. Where’s Ed Schultz?”

 I’ll tell you what is disrespectful to the office of the President. Implementing a law that is entirely unpopular with the majority of the people in this country, forcing it upon them, and then changing it whenever you please to fit your political needs.

 Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, who reports to you, Mr. President, and her staff spent millions of dollars on a website that, to this day, still doesn’t work. Have you not heard of GoDaddy.Com? Isn’t anyone responsible for this failure? For any of these failures? This is a law, Mr. President, a law which bears your name.

 “Don’t put that on me. I refer to it as HillaryCare. Or Romne…”

 Fair enough, but after a disastrous rollout, you claim that the website is now up and running and that people are getting enrolled. You said 9 million have signed up. Where do you get your statistics?

 “I have answered these questions time and time again on MSNBC and in Rolling Stone, and even on MTV. They also asked me my favorite food, to which I said broccoli. They believed me! Those people will believe anything I say. Broccoli—you have to admit, that’s a good one.”

 Nobody likes broccoli.

 “I know. That’s my point. 9 million signed up for ObamaCa–I mean, the ACA. Nobody is at fault over Benghazi, or the IRS. Syria has a red line. Syria has a blue line. One Fish, Two Fish… whatever. My favorite food is broccoli. Or caulifower, or liver. I can say anything, and The New York Times will blame everyone…but me!”

 I’ll tell you what is disrespectful to the office of the President. Going to a funeral, and taking a selfie. And this wasn’t just any funeral, this was Nelson Mandela’s funeral. You are a statesman representing the United States and the free world. Can you imagine Churchill doing this? I can’t even imagine Bill Clinton doing this. What were you thinking?

 “I wanted to capture the moment. I thought the guy who was doing the sign language said ‘Say cheese’ so me, and some of my peeps took out the new iPhone. Turns out the guy was just making stuff up. Can you imagine that?”

 No disrespect, Mr. President, but I can. I really, really can.

 Scott Johnston – NEWSslinger Contributor
A longtime television Sports Producer/Writer, Scott Johnston is turning his attention away from baseball, football, and tennis and  towards his favorite other sport: politics. A husband and father of two, Scott lives just north of Boston in the very blue state of  Massachusetts. He writes about things other than politics in his blog . Originally from , Scott and his family moved to the Northeast almost 10 years ago and enjoy it very much, other than the winters and the politicians, both of which he finds cold, long (-winded), and hard to take.