Lv 6
Tim asked in Politics & GovernmentElections · 1 decade ago

My first question; can an Obama supporter please explain the "bitterness" comment?

I like to think I am a fair minded person, so I thought long and hard about what Obama said:

"It's not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations,"

I am not sure I see his logic. How does clinging to guns, religion, et al explain the frustrations of the small town person? I have no doubt that some people are bitter with the economy, but they explain it quite well; they are bitter with the economy because the ecomony has not imporved markedly in their area. What is the clinging about?


Folks, thanks for the responses. Most of you have been thoughtful and pleasant and I appreciate that.

I did read the entire quote, not just the bit I posted. And I still have not gotten the answer to the core question; how does clinging to these things explain the frustration. I get it that people are frustrated and bitter, and I think in many respects he is correct. But why the other things? That is the part I am having difficulty with.

And I did see where he apologized, but if he thinks he is right, why apologize? Why not just explain your thought process and point of view?

15 Answers

  • SDD
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago
    Favourite answer

    Seeking comfort in those things that are stable and reliable in a world that seems unstable and unreliable.

  • 4 years ago

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    The problem with the "bitter" comment is that most people, like yourself, keep leaving out the first part of Obama's quote.

    He said that the people in rural America lost all of their jobs and nothing replaced them.

    That's what make them bitter. And because of this bitterness, they hold on to their traditions, guns and religion, and they are angry at others who they think are the cause of their poor economy.

    If you're going to quote Obama, include the entire quote. Don't just use one part of it and forget about the most important part of the quote.

  • 1 decade ago

    You don't see the logic because you're not hearing the whole statement. He was talking about how politicians go by rural areas and promise them the jobs will come back and the economy will improve and so on but they never remember them once elected. So they get bitter towards politicians and with their lot in life and turn to what they can still rely on.

    Seriously though...don't ask us to explain it. Senator Obama is only too happy to explain the comment.

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  • 1 decade ago

    i just explained this to someone at my job.

    When things around us are beyond our control we 'cling' to the things that give us comfort and security. Religion IS a comfort. It certainly has been a comfort to me in what has felt like a nightmarish 7 years. Obama was saying that as people cling to those things, they are abused by the government into becoming one issue voters-gun rights, gay marriage, immigration...stuff like that. Its not a dig at the fact that we DO cling..its the way that politics takes advantage of it. When you dont fully understand why things are happening, we wrap ourselves in what gives us assurance/release. Obama realizes that and he's exposing the way people are taken advantage of. Not insulting the people.

    But its easier to just 'be offended'..without trying to understand what he meant. Obama is talking to us like adults and asking us to think deeper about how we've been duped by the government.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    First, he has apologized, as his words were not exactly correct....but the sentiment is the same.

    When your government fails you--repeatedly as this one has done--we often are divided on issues that do not actually address the problem....

    Thus, people will argue, fight, and even vote on issues like abortion based on their religious beliefs....or like the 2nd amendment based on their hunting/defense beliefs, when these issues have largely been decided by the majority of americans.....

    While some people focus on religious or amendment beliefs/rights....they often lose focus on the bigger picture...that we need to fix the economy.....that there are many other ways people and weapons can enter our country than just our Mexican border. He is both religious and in favor of the 2nd amendment.....he just feels like, in our frustration, we focus on what divides us more than what we can all agree on and what we can, ultimately, actually solve.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    What Obama said may have been true, but the first and second amendments are about religion and guns. Some of America's core values are... religion and guns. Obama should have phrased what he wanted to say a little more... carefully.

  • 1 decade ago

    Find and read the entire quote, not just the little clip you posted. That will explain everything.

    It's called the truth. I know most of us are not used to hearing it from a politician so its a little shocking at first.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Read the whole quote. He said they were bitter about the government not doing anthing to help them with the economy so they vote on issues relating to religion and guns.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    people are bitter about job loses etc so they turn to things they find comfort in, like religion or hunting.

    I turn to the bible sometimes when things are down and i'm angry.

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