In a speech resembling a TV re-run (the liberal website The Daily Beast called it "dull"), President Obama accepted his party's nomination for a second term. In doing so, he made the most ludicrous claim of this campaign, indeed, of his presidency: "You didn't elect me to tell you what you wanted to hear. You elected me to tell you the truth."
With this president, truth telling remains an unfulfilled promise. Telling Democrats what they want to hear was what the Charlotte convention was all about.
Perhaps the only truth-teller at the convention was Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the archbishop of New York. In his benediction, Dolan stood against the anti-life tide of the Democratic Party when he prayed: "Thus do we praise you for the gift of life. Grant us the courage to defend it, life, without which no other rights are secure. We ask your benediction on those waiting to be born, that they may be welcomed and protected."
It was a gutsy move by Dolan. But, according to Media Research Center's NewsBusters, "The only networks respectful enough to show the prayer in its entirety without interruption were Fox News, Fox Business and C-SPAN. ABC, CNN, and PBS kept it in the background, while talking over it. MSNBC completely ignored it." Dolan's prayer was also a rebuke to a convention that failed to include the word "God" in its party platform. The three voice votes appeared to favor omitting any reference to God in the Democrats' platform, but because of how it would look to some religious voters, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, the convention chairman, declared the necessary two-thirds majority vote. The response? Boos from the crowd.
The party platform would be more truthful had it left God out. Would God approve of abortion on demand and same-sex marriage? Not according to the Book delegates could consult in their hotel rooms. A convention dominated by the left's fixation on this modern form of child sacrifice, along with contraception and same-sex marriage, is not the type of agenda likely to find favor with God, or appeal to many in Middle America. Bigger government programs to "help" the poor reach the middle class are unlikely to cover this multitude of sins.
I would be perfectly fine if both parties stopped talking about God. In fact, I would prefer politicians end their speeches with something other than "God bless you and God bless America." What's wrong with "thank you for listening and good night"? Why should God bless America? What are we doing that would earn His favor? This is sloppy theology that any first-year seminary student, or serious layman, could dissect.
Then there is the matter of Jerusalem. In the Democratic Party's 2008 platform, distinct reference was made to Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. "Jerusalem is and will remain the capital of Israel," it stated. That language went missing in 2012, though it was later reinstated. The 2012 platform addition now reads: "Jerusalem is and will remain the capital of Israel. The parties have agreed that Jerusalem is a matter for final status negotiations. It should remain an undivided city accessible to people of all faiths." Why was the language omitted in the first place? Could the omission have been a reflection of the Democrats' desire for Muslim votes?
A major reason why the Obama acceptance speech was regarded as "dull" is his overexposure. He's on TV too many times a day, every day. We've heard it all before. Instead of a crescendo in Charlotte, President Obama became his own diminuendo.
Friday's jobs report didn't help the president's claim of an improving economy with better days ahead in a second term. The official percentage of unemployed declined slightly from 8.3 percent to 8.1 percent, but that may be because many of the unemployed have stopped looking for work.
If voters elected this president to "tell the truth," can he be fired for not telling it? We'll know in less than two months.
Readers may e-mail Cal Thomas at firstname.lastname@example.org.