In 2009, newly minted President Barack Obama was given the Nobel Peace Prize for pretty much doing nothing other than being elected. The hope from the international community was that he would follow through on that investment of trust.
So, how has that worked out?
Well, ask the over 100 innocent civilians killed by drone strikes during the Obama years. But when it comes to viewing Barack Obama as a bringer of peace, the work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives, and the dream shall never die.
That’s at least the message from the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Foundation, which will make the former president a Human Rights Ripple of Hope laureate.
According to The Hill, Obama joins Discovery President and CEO David Zaslav, Humana CEO Bruce Broussard and Democrat New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy in receiving the honor, which fetes leaders for “their exceptional work toward a more just and peaceful world.”
“My father believed; ‘Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope,” Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights President Kerry Kennedy said in an announcement issued Monday.
“On the 50th anniversary of his historic campaign for the White House, we honor laureates who have sent forth countless ripples of hope to millions of people inspired by their example.”
— RFK Human Rights (@RFKHumanRights) August 6, 2018
“The Ripple of Hope Gala caps an incredible year of commemoration and activism by celebrating those who work to advance the legacy of Robert F. Kennedy in our challenging modern times,” the announcement noted.
“Bobby Kennedy was one of my heroes,” Obama is quoted as saying. “I first got into public service because I wanted to be a part of something bigger than myself, believing that my own salvation was bound up with the salvation of others.”
“That’s something he expressed far better than I ever could when he talked about the power that comes from acting on our ideals, those ripples of hope that can ‘sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.’”
“That’s what I’m determined to help inspire and cultivate over the rest of my career — the idea that anybody can be one of the millions of acts of conscience and voices raised against injustice, the idea that anybody can be one of the ‘million different centers of energy and daring’ who, like Bobby Kennedy, have always changed the world for the better.”
Right. Just run that one by the people living in Iraq and Afghanistan, where Obama’s decision to pull out early let the Islamic State group and the Taliban entrench themselves.
Just ask the people of Syria, where Obama drew a “line in the sand” involving intervention if chemical weapons were used and then ignored it, and then later said he was “very proud” of what he had done.
Or, just ask the over 100 innocent men, women and children who were killed by drone strikes during his presidency.
Either way, why not give the award to the former president? After all, he deserved this just as much as he deserved his Nobel Prize.
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