I feel compelled to add some more thoughts.
President Obama has enormous standing in regards to social politics. This is only enhanced by the fact that our last President was extremely disregarded and demoted as a social and political influence.
Any and all actions and statements are seen/heard by the public, as well as international parties. Therefore, the President and his family must be aware of and understand the results/reactions/influences of all of these actions and statements. This is clear, and in an extreme example, there are laws, such as impeachment, that are there to allow the ruling that the President can possibly be removed from office if an illegal action is committed.
Taking a step in a different direction...Domestic animal euthanasia or claims of overpopulation.
Now...Some may argue overpopulation is a myth.
I agree, most of the stories pro-kill shelters and animal control centers tell you ARE myths, ways to justify euthanasia of millions of animals. Lack of resources and people interested in stepping up to help as well as lack of responsibility as pet owners are the issues here.
However, that does not change the fact that millions of animals ARE euthanized, starved, dumped, shot, beaten, etc. every year. That is a verifiable fact.
How do we fix these issues and/or save these animals? Provide responsible, safe homes for these unwanted animals. Fact is, that is the ONLY 100% sure fix.
I'd like to point towards yet another subject. Responsible verses irresponsible breeding.
In theory, there is nothing immoral or 'wrong' with responsible breeding of cats, dogs, and other domesticated animals. This is how different breeds stay alive and separate. This is also how standards and developments in breed types are set/made.
It is my personal opinion, however, that breeding of any kind should not be considered an 'occupation.' I feel it is extremely immoral to treat an animal like an item to be made money off of, in a similar regard to why slavery is immoral. Animals feel a large and similar range of emotions that we feel, and therefore should be treated accordingly. They do have opinions about where they live, what they eat, who they're around, who they love, what they want, what makes them irritated, and so on. I'm sure anyone with a cat can hurriedly assure you of that fact.
Breeding is a respectable thing to do when done responsibly and with the best interest of the animals involved are considered and upheld. Otherwise done, it is illegal within the U.S.A. and immoral by default.
(Just as a tidbit...Many PWD breeders of a respectable nature have made statements that made it clear they wished the First family would choose another breed of dog because of the rarity and likelihood that illegitimate breeders will pick up catering to the coming trend).
When the Obamas were searching and considering which breed and specific dog to adopt, it appears that the two daughters' allergies were the only factors in consideration. Portuguese Water dogs are not ideal first-time dog owners' ideal.
As most of us know, there are plenty of different breeds that are 'hypoallergenic.' Also, as many of us know, there are many, many pure-breds in shelters and rescues. Twenty-five percent when last studied, to be clear. Also, as another tidbit, mix-breed dogs can have blood tests run to determine which type of mixture they are...Therefore providing information as to whether allergies would be an issue or not.
Now, factor in that the Obamas, (the President and his wife, to be specific), mentioned adopting from a shelter or rescue. Imagine the happiness and excitement involved in shelters/rescues at the idea that the President might adopt an animal from their shelter/rescue. They, in theory, would be more than happy to try to assist the President and his family in any way to find the right dog, wouldn't you think? It's very likely the Obamas would have had the first pick or extra consideration. Also, lest we forget, the Presidential family has nearly unlimited resources available to them to easily accommodate anything required to find this perfect dog. Travel ability, money, power, influence, connections, favoritism, etc.
It would have been fairly easy, (considering as well, the large, nationwide amount of selection), to find a:
-Hypoallergenic shelter/rescue dog
-Hypoallergenic shelter/rescue dog around the right age
-Hypoallergenic shelter/rescue dog around the right age, with a good temperament
-Hypoallergenic shelter/rescue dog around the right age, with a good temperament, and who was cute.
I can call around, visit shelters/rescues, and verify that statement as fact if I need to.
The Obamas made the choice to 'receive' a 'present' from Ted Kennedy. Then, to patch things up, (because Pres. Obama apparently felt there was SOME need to), the President made a large donation to the D.C. Humane Society.
Unfortunately, money does not equal a permanent, responsible home for any of the animals located at that Humane Society. As mentioned above, only those ADOPTING the animals are the ones who actually, finally save the animals they choose. The expected example was not shown and now the Portuguese Water dog is a new trend in the U.S.A..
Not quite a beneficial situation to anyone, and that DOES include responsible breeders of the PWD.
But, so what? This isn't really a big issue. Why should we be pissed over something so small and unimportant?
Agreed, why should we worry about treatment, well-being, and rights of the animals who share the world with us? It's not REALLY that big an issue, is it? Neither is loss of different cultures, resources, environmental habitats, certain species, and so on.
Who is supposed to worry about those issues? Someone has to, and it may not be you, but someone DOES have to promote change, because otherwise, nothing will change.
But ignoring that view, what about the fact that this was a chance to prove why I voted for him? I want change...And I would have really been happy with a step in the right direction in regards to this issue, because it's important to ME. However, the step wasn't taken.
It is a small thing, for now, but it is also a demonstration of Barack Obama's decision making process, one way or another.
All in all, bottom line is that time will tell what type of man Barack Obama is and how he'll deal with all the 'little' issues that face us each day.