Remember during the 2000 election when everyone wanted Al Gore to loosen up and be less "stiff?" All that nonsense reached its height when the story broke that Naomi Wolf was consulting with the campaign on how Gore could express a more "alpha male" personality. The only thing American voters got out of that was to see Gore look like an awkward phony.
Fast forward to 2012 and there is no end of people who, every time things look difficult for the Obama campaign, feel free to give their arm chair advice about how he needs to get angry. That advice is just as ridiculous as what Gore received.
Let's start with what we know about President Obama's personality. We've watched him now for over 4 years and have both seen how he tends to react and heard him spell it out for us. He doesn't have a temper and is best suited to being a "counter-puncher." Before he acts, he tends to think things through.
What we know about human beings is that whether those kinds of things are genetic or learned, they tend to be pretty deeply rooted by the time someone is the President's age. In other words, if he tried to act otherwise, he would come off as phony as Gore did.
Whether we like it or not, this is the President we have. And I tend to like it.
The truth is that when people want him to get angry, they're really telling us more about themselves than anything else. In other words, they're suggesting what THEY would do in any given situation.
What I would suggest is that they don't understand President Obama's reactions and it would behoove them to spend a little time being curious about that before they venture into telling him what he should do.
For example, some people who rush to judgement about all this make the assumption that he doesn't get mad because he's a coward and is afraid to fight. I seriously thought we had put that one to rest a while ago. The man has nerves of steel. He has clearly shown that to be the case.
So doesn't that make you just a little curious about his style? The way I see it, he has NO problem with fighting. Its just not his style to do so by trying to punch someone in the nose (figuratively).
While it may not be a good approach for everyone, we all could learn a thing or two from President Obama's approach to fighting. Thinking about that always takes me back to a magnificent diary by AikidoPilgrim in which he defined the President's style as bearing a lot of resemblance to the Aikido Way.
If you prefer to get mad and rage about the insanity of Republicans these days...feel free to do so. But let's let Obama BE Obama rather than try to make him over in our own image. If for no other reason, I respect him too much for that.