"CHICAGO (AP) -- Chicago Mayor Richard Daley says he's honored that both President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama will head to Copenhagen in support of Chicago's bid to host the 2016 Summer Olympics.
White House adviser Valerie Jarrett told The Associated Press on Monday that the president will leave Thursday for Europe. Obama would be the first U.S. president to take on such a direct role in lobbying for the games."
It is unusual for a sitting President to take off time from a busy schedule to lobby for his home city in such a competition. The AP report did not make it clear what the cost to the federal government would be of President and Mrs. Obama's trip.
What makes the trip particularly poor in its timing was a gang killing in Chicago which was videotaped and made national news Fox News reported on the fight, which caused a Chicago high school student, Derrion Albert his life. Fox News reports as follows on the fight, which was typical of gang fights which occurred on a weekly basis after school in Chicago.
"In all four students were beaten in that melee -- one was released from the hospital Friday morning.
While police continue their investigation, some students say they don't want to go back to Fenger next week.
Rival gang members have been fighting for a month -- and each time one of their fellow classmates is injured.
No knives and no guns were used in Thursday's fight. Just fists, feet and boards.
Derrion Albert, 16, was struck in the head by one of those boards.
Seconds later the honor student hit the pavement. That’s when witnesses, who are other high school students, say gangbangers began stomping on and punching Albert."
Since Fox news posted the article and the video, four reputed gang members have been arrested for Derrion Albert's murder. What is most disturbing about the murder are reports that the fear of gang violence has made Chicago students reluctant to go to school.
President Obama has put a great deal of time and energy into making peace abroad. His energies are much more sorely needed in his home city. Gangs have become a nationwide problem, fed by urban despair and unchecked immigration. Chicago, New York City, Los Angeles and scores of other cities across America are blighted by gang violence. President Obama's trip to Denmark is just one more indication of his skewed priorities and general cluelessness. Cities that seek to host Olympic games usually beef up their infrastructure. It would seem that safe streets would be an additional prerequisite for having Olympic games in one's city.
Obama's trip is a nice exercise in escapism. It is kind of like Mike Bloomberg, the Mayor of New York City, who attempts to distract from issues like affordable housing by focusing on smoking and planting one million trees in New York City. There are a lot of problems that will be waiting for President Obama in the US when he gets back from Denmark.
The juxtaposition of Derrion Albert's murder with President Obama's frivolous trip to Denmark is a cameo illustration of his general cluelessness. Back when he was a Senator, there may have been an excuse for such a junket. Now, he is President of the United States.
Just one bit of advice to the President. You have made your best effort to make friends with rogue states since taking office. You have tried to see the loveable side of terrorists, even as you snub America's long standing allies. If you ever have a youth summit in the White House, please pay attention to the good kids who are afraid to go to school. If you invite the gang leaders themselves, it will look too much like your foreign policy.
In honour of President Obama's trip to Denmark, I am presenting this beer commercial, which illustrates perfectly how most Americans are getting through his presidency.
Tuborg beer commercial
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