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A time for peace….

Today, President Barack Obama won the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize for “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.

Other than change the word “between” to “among,” I would not change a thing! :-)

The “California connection….?” Today I was in a classroom with gifted 7th graders, and the reaction of one of them was that the efforts of President Obama were much like the efforts of many American Presidents, and that the recognition was racially motivated. The “rub….?” The student is a male Asian-American. I told him that I disagreed in this case but that we could “agree to disagree.” (By the way, “agreeing to disagree” is something that you can get a gifted 7th grader to “agree to!” :-) This is how a 7th grader DIFFERS from a more “mature” individual.) :-)

And then I told him why I have my opinion…. We are at a very dangerous time in world relations. Perhaps there has never been a time when we have not been, but the potential for nuclear weapons in the hands of what some folks call “rogue nations,” (and actual nuclear weapons in the hands of other nations that are not particularly “peaceable”) makes this time like no other.

It looks like the reaction of social networking sites was also “split.”

I also told the students that I have a number of friends who have nothing but bad things to say about ANYTHING (and I mean anything) that President Obama does. I would ask those friends to examine their feelings, and ask themselves the question, “Why?”

I told the students that no matter what opinions they have about our President (and the variety of expressed opinions is a VERY GOOD and a VERY American thing), the fact that President Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize is also a very good thing for the image of America. The world’s image of America has had some tough times lately – some deserved, some undeserved. America has not always had its current image. There was a time when America was known more for freeing Europe from a Nazi regime and for feeding the hungry than for some questionable military incursions.

Although I am still looking for the “third” sitting U.S. President who won a Nobel Peace Prize (according to one news broadcast that my half-awake brain heard this morning; it looks like it was Teddy Roosevelt), former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002, called the selection of Mr. Obama, “a bold statement of international support for his vision and commitment to peace and harmony in international relations.”

And for me, the first thoughts rushing to my mind were the lyrics to “Turn! Turn! Turn!” sung by The Byrds (play the Lyrics Scroller on the first link to hear the music) and see the incorrectly transcribed lyrics):

“A time for peace, I swear it’s not too late….”

-Bill at Cheshire Cat Photo™

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