On the day of Barack Obama’s second inauguration, David Keene, President of the National Rifle Association, continued his attack on the President by airing another infomercial. “Are the President’s children better than your children?” the TV advertisement asks. “What right do they have to live in the White House? Just who does Obama think he is? Letting his hoity-toity children show such airs only gives them the feeling that children in America are precious, of some value, not simply expendable objects. Think of the terrible example this sets for everyone else. Children don’t have any value. They can’t even shoot straight. Only guns have value.”
Rick Santorum—also part of the advertisement—supported Keene’s argument by adding to the ground fire that has exploded ever since the Newtown shootings on December 14th. “It’s worse than letting those children live in the White House. He sends them to an exclusive private school in Washington, D.C. What a snob. I educate my kids at home—as every parent should—so I can teach them how to shoot guns as part of the curriculum. If someone tried to enter my house, my kids would shoot them dead. They’re prepared. I can guarantee you that. The President thinks he’s better than anyone else. Just because he got re-elected. Big deal. Why doesn’t he take the time to educate his kids himself? What else does he have to do? Raise more taxes?”
Commenting on the NRA’s latest advertisement, Congressman Paul Ryan brought up the question of letting the President’s children live rent-free in the White House at the taxpayer’s expense. “Isn’t it the same thing as giving those kids fancy food stamps? He’s creating a generation of black children who think that they don’t have to do any work. Just sit around, and welfare will take care of them. By the time I was the same age as—what’s her name, the President’s older daughter?—I almost had a full time job. Think of the incredible waste involved in keeping these kids in iPhones, fancy dresses, their own rooms—all at government expense. And this guy refuses to balance the budget.”
“It’s that damn dog that bothers me,” ‘Rushed’ Limbaugh lamented during his daytime show. “Pooping in the Lincoln bedroom. What’ll happen if one of those little black girls asks for a monkey next? It’s a desecration. Children shouldn’t be seen or heard, but these Obama girls seem to run the whole show. And that dog—if he got into my yard, I know what I’d do with him.”
“Guns or children,” Donald Trump was overheard muttering. “I can tell you what I’d rather have. Guns don’t talk back to you. Guns don’t criticize the way you comb your hair. Guns don’t ask for the latest gizmo they see on TV. Guns keep silent, watching, waiting. You can even take your gun to bed with you, and you know you’re not going to be embarrassed.”
David Keene replied, “Isn’t that what most NRA members already do?”
Charles R. Larson is Emeritus Professor of Literature at American University in Washington, D.C.