For Discussion: Is President Obama Too Cool To Be Properly Respected?

- By Bossip Staff

With his appearance on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart last night, President Obama may have just earned another spot in the history books… for the most over analyzed presidential interview in the history of the United States.

Some are questioning Stewart’s ability as a presidential interviewer, since he’s the first satirical comedian to get a chance to interview a sitting president. They’re also wondering why Stewart held back, considering how hard he usually goes in on the President.

Others are talking about the President’s vibe on air: was he tense? Did he come off as being on the defensive? Did this appearance affect the public’s opinion positively or negatively?

One statement in particular raised some eyebrows.

Obama said that administration official Larry Summers did a “heckuva job” on financial reform–and the President suggested his words were deliberately chosen to echo the language George W. Bush used to praise FEMA official Michael Brown during Hurricane Katrina. Stewart jokingly told the president, “You don’t want to use that phrase, dude.”

Was it disrespectful for Stewart to address the president using a term that’s more commonly exchanged between two college guys sharing a bong?

Since the days of George Washington, America’s top leader has been addressed as “Mr. President.” Even Martha Washington called her husband “Mr. President.” Congress at one point considered the loftier title of “His Highness the President of the United States of America and Protector of their Liberties.” It’s unlikely the Founding Fathers would have ever considered the title “dude.”

Which raises the question: does our 44th President’s accessibility and down-to-Earth demeanor make him seem too much like “one of us” for us to offer him the proper amount of respect?

Or is it about time that we stop thinking of the President of the United States of America, the Commander in Chief, as someone that is somehow just a little better than the rest of us and thus worthy of a little more respect than most?


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  • Keysha Likes it HOT!!

    The moment he gets “angry” it will be the angry black guy in the white house. Then what? He cant win, it’s a set up…… He wont run Again Michelle wont let him!

    • D Lat

      I agree with you. If he’s incredibly studious, they would say he’s “uptight” or an “Uncle Tom”. When he’s relaxed and relatable, they say he’s “too accesible and down-to-earth to demand the proper respect”. He can’t win. People have always resisted change, no matter how beneficial.

    • HeartBreak

      I agree, Bush and them destroyed the economy and then when the sh*t was burning they handed the black man a hose and said, “Try and put THAT sh*t out!”

      Regardless I LOVE MY PRESIDENT AND THE FIRST FAMILY- even if I don’t agree with EVERYTHING he’s done. CHANGE TAKES TIME.

  • hoe lee crap...

    Has NOTHING to do with him…just his skin color..that all

    • lisa

      true, regarding what he does some white people are bitter and feel he shouldn’t be there because he is Black. It’s obvious from all the over hate on anything he does.

  • RMEs

    I personally want there to be an “air” about the Presidency. Not that he is better than the rest of us, but there should be some “magic” to the office for a lack of a better word. I think with all the tv appearances (the View, Daily Show, Myth Busters, Tonight Show etc) and being seen in “mom” jeans we are getting too familiar. He is beginning to be overexposed.

  • gmollyg

    The President appears so cool and collected because he knows who he is and what he wants. He’s down to earth naturally! Life has had its ups and downs for him. He was persistant and it paid off. I truly believe the President wants to make a difference in this country and get us out of this huge debt and mess we are in. When you’re honest and have nothing to hide; you can be down to earth naturally like President Barack Obama. He’s living it as he speaks it!

  • gmollyg

    Further, I must add; He’s just BRILLIANT! The so-called upper crust of America can’t do anything with him. I’m sure he gets angry and all, but they can’t rattle his chain…lol He’s like playing chess with them and calling check mate over and over. They have resorted to physical violence in an attempt to ruffle his feathers in vain. Why should he walk around with an air of authority? He’s comfortable with himself. I just love it!

  • if anything be noble

    He doesn’t demand respect. He laughs and jokes when he should be putting his foot up tails. It’s not a Black thing. There are plenty of Black men who, if president, foolish whiteguys would think 3, 4… 5 times before they fixed their lips to call them somebody’s ‘dude.’ Just the look on their Black face would say ‘I Am Your President. Call Me Dude If You Want To. There Will Be None of That, Fool.’ I’m convinced there MUST be a subtle element of seriousness — if not downright fear — when Black people interact with whitefolks. Convinced of it. Mike Tomlin comes to mind. (Go Steelers.) Whiteboyplease. Bet you wouldn’t be calling President Mike Tomlin nobody’s ‘dude.’ Pres-o-dent Tomlin would set your butt straight right there on your show. Homey don’t play that. Bottom line is whitefolks will get just about as loose and disrespectful with you as you let them. BO let’s them get real loose. But that’s also how he became president in the first place… He’s a nice guy.

  • right

    Let’s call it like it is. No matter what President Obama says or does, the media will over-analyze it due to his being “too black”. That is it. He’s 1/2 black and 1/2 white but that’s too black for America. I get tired of this beating around the bush and trying to act like the situation isn’t what it is. He’s too dark to be taken seriously by the majority in this country. This is why we have the foolishness that is the Tea Party. Keep It Real.

    • RMEs

      I don’t see a lack of respect from the media in regards to President Obama (unless you are talking about the Rush Limbaughs of the world) but I think the majority of media (CNN, MSNBC (Chris Matthews in partic) NY Times etc) want to see him succeed. I think the media helped him win by painting a picture very favorbale to the American public. I have to agree with the blogger who said he doesn’t really demand respect. He does joke around a lot.

  • if anything be noble

    I agree. If he challenges how he’s spoken to, then he’s ‘the angry Black man.’ *Hide yo senators, hide yo interns, hide yo congresswomen, hide yo delegates…* If he doesn’t respond to their subtle foolishness, then he’s a ‘nerdy wimp.’ It’s a game he can’t win. But Geo Bush who couldn’t spell dude if you spotted him the d and the u was respectfully called ‘Mr. President.’ Peeps be crazy.

  • ViSION

    People please stop attributing every criticism of Obama to his skin color.
    It goes with the territory BUSH was ridiculed get off it, As an african american myself i wish we would stop perpetuating this sensitive cry eying, HE IS THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES ..for lack of a better term MAN UP!
    ……Imagine bush harping and crying, oh the people don’t like me, oh the people are unfair to me, oh the media is unfair to me…Get off it……The question raised by many people on both sides of the political spectrum are serious issues…
    The president must present himself to be powerful, this is reinforced by his look, his dress and style. He must present himself in rarefied context…Not be seen on every stage, comdedic show, pseudo political show and talk show available.
    Sorry guys, he is coming off more like a celebrity…I personally think he likes to see himself and hear himself speak far too much….

  • if anything be noble

    But to Bush’s face he was respected. In interviews they’d respect him. He would mess it up for himSELF when they would ask him basic questions and he’d be breakin out with the “I misunderestimated” …making up words that you wouldn’t be finding in nooooo body’s dictionary and carrying on… :::hey Sarah Palin. How YOU doin?::: smh Bush got respect to his face. He just could not answer basic questions with words we’ve heard of.

  • Bohwe

    Pres. Obama was the president of his Harvard Law Review, he went from community organizer-junior senator of Illonois- to President of the United States. He accomplished this by being himself. It’s not always about being the loudest in the room, it’s about manipulating your opponent to control their every move. The great leaders of the world have and had the love of the people, and that is what Obama has accomplished.


    umm…I don’t think of him as being like me…at all. Also, I LOVE MY PRESIDENT!!!

  • if anything be noble

    *sings ‘One of These Things Is Not Like the Other One/ One of These Things Just Isn’t the Same’…* @ Bohwe. President of Harvard Law Review, community organizer, Senator are not US President (AKA Leader of Free World.) This is a whole new, messy, dirty game. Whole different rules. Whole different standards. America can’t name one other Harvard Law Review president or a community organizer in Chicago right now but they’ve had 40+ presidents that have been chronicled in detail. BO might have known how to excel on those levels, but he sure better learn quick how to play this game and win at it.

  • miles davis

    Hell no…i’ve never seen a flunky that was cool.

  • muchluv

    OK, I’m not visiting this site anymore because it is becoming dangerous. I sense some Tea Party tactics here. They keep lay down very subliminal negative plants about the president on an African American website. I’ve enjoyed coming here, but this is my last time.

    • izzo

      bye. you won’t be missed.

    • RMEs

      LOL @ izzo

  • ignoranceisbliss

    I read your rant and well that sounds nice in theory thank god people like you don’t have any power and you are just a meaningless voice in the crowd.

    Ending social services would ruin this nation. Running a government isn’t like running your mouth this wasn’t about the nation it was about if we respect Obama or not for coming off so cool.

    He is doing the best he can under the circumstances he was given.

    Your fool hearted comment makes no season the population of New Zealand can probably fit with in the city of Los Angeles so tearing things up wasn’t that hard think before you ran…I will keep it pushing (Libertarian what ever that is another label of the so called higher minded thinkers) Republican dummy

  • white male

    Obama is very inexperienced. He was never in the military and he was only in the government for a year before he ran for president. He also never ran a business.

    • JGunner

      …and your point is what?

  • white male

    yah next presidents will probably be mexicans. My relatives only moved to america like a couple generations ago. my point was its not that obama is “too cool” that some people are worrying about what he is doing

  • CeCe

    Obama time has been up…. And I voted for him! He will not get another vote out of me. I’m so tired of people saying he’s cleaning up Bush’s mess but every president that comes in after the previous president has to clean up some sort of mess. I’m a proud black woman and I didn’t vote for him cause he’s black I voted for him because the B.S he was talking sounded real convincing. His agenda is not getting jobs available and better education his Agenda is making this country dependent on government. Look at the universal healthcare. It’s ran by the government. All the gay people he put on his administration…smsh! There are no jobs, no money no nothing! We don’t have time to be patient with him we need to see results! I’m not a fan of Bush but people had jobs! All presidents in some way are crooked, Obama is no different! U either have what it takes to be president or u don’t and Obama don’t! Now run tell that!

  • Jersey Girl

    What is too cool? Our current president is someone who everyone, except the really wealthy, (of which he is one), can relate. What’s wrong with a president who can appeal to the common man? We have never had a president like this one…only old white folks who appear to be so unrelated to the common man’s plea.

    Almost every country in the world has better health care, one of the richest nations in the world. My husband was appalled when he had to pay for his health care out of his paycheck. I paid for the family until this year. It was too expensive.

    I am so upset with people who are mad at Obama and what he has accomplished so far. Our country, and it’s economy was so f’d up before he took office. He came into office facing a huge deficit, unemployment rates that the country has not seen since at least the 1970s and escalating inflation.

    Really, what is the man supposed to do in two years, PERFORM MIRACLES?

    • Marquis de Sade

      How does Obama “APPEAL” to the common man?

      how the democrats are looking out for the little guy???

      It seems to me that’s a slogan for a ship that’s long since sailed. From where I’m sitting, Obama and the democrats just gave hundreds of billions of our tax dollars to Wall Street, and they refused to regulate derivatives, which now total more than all the money in the GLOBAL ECONOMY!

      Trust, Obama has about as much in common with the poor workin’ c.l.a.s.s. (let alone our best interest), as Bush and the GOP. – They’re one in the same, but (until recently) were just irresponsible with our tax dollars in different ways…And now that line has been BLURRED! 😆

    • RMEs

      I sorry your husband was appalled that he had to pay for health care out of his own pocket. Is he appalled when he has to pay rent out of it too?

  • Jersey Girl

    None of these white folks were posting when our former president was ruining the country. He sent us into a nonsensical war…to defend people who are not shooting at us and blowing up our soldiers.

    Now we have a scapegoat. Think David Dinkins in NYC. He implemented a lot of programs that Guiliani took credit for in the administration after his. Wake up people. Change does not occur overnight.

    [When George Bush, the younger, took office, we had a surplus. He then gave you folks (I didn’t get one and it was okay and I knew what a mess he was making) tax incentives. That helped to deplete the surplus. Then he waged unnecessary wars against people who didn’t want or need our help. So, you tell me, who has been worse for the country? “White male…any comments?”

  • Marquis de Sade

    Jersey Girl

    “Almost every country in the world has better health care, one of the richest nations in the world. My husband was appalled when he had to pay for his health care out of his paycheck. I paid for the family until this year. It was too expensive.”

    No body on the left, right or center denies that heath care in this country needs serious reforms, but if your car needs a new fuel pump, shocks, struts, a break job etc and some other work, are you goin’ to have a professional fix those problems, or opt to have all of the above PLUS the engine and transmission rebuilt from scratch too? – By your plumber? – That’s what we’re gettin’ with Obamacare. The last thing you’d want is the Government facilitatin’ healthcare in this country. (at least in its current overly bureaucratic, overly micro-managed form).

    Not a perfect a.n.a.l.o.g.y, but you get the picture. 😆

  • d.

    I don’t think that he should have went on that show, he should’ve went on a respected journalists show.

  • RMEs

    Marquis, I hear you but the gov’t has done a GREAT job of convincing a lot of people it will take care of us and not that we need to look out for ourselves and our families.

  • J

    Funny that no one has addressed the influence of GW Bush…

    He (and OUR subsequqnt mocking of him) single handedly diminsished the view of the American president…Exhibit A-him getting a show tossed at him

    Now people like Stewart get too familiar.

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