Tuesday, January 22, 2008

From One Dream to Another

What better way to honor Dr. King's memory than to look at the candidates who are fighting for the presidency. In the mix and being talked about as having a great shot at winning are a black man and a woman. Is racism dead? No! We have only to look at the recent incidents in Jena, Louisiana, to see we are a ways off. But perhaps we are getting there, one step at a time.

On a lighter note, here's our discussion for the week. What do you think about President Clinton napping off during MLK III's remembrance sermon? Is it disrespectful, or does it just show the guy's humanity? Who of us have not drifted off during a presentation? Or is it different in this account? If you know you are being watched by hundreds and by a camera, should you try harder? Watch the video by clicking here. I'm not trying to make a mountain out of a molehill. Just wondering what you think of this moment. Don't short change yourself. Give me two full paragraphs and remember you can comment on your classmates responses as well. Also, if using a nickname online, please make sure i get your real name so i can give credit more easily.


LaJoyce Roseborough said...

I think Clinton was being disrespectful. It was kind of funny though. He should have known to get some sleep. Clinton knew he was going to be in front of a camera. Everyone is looking at him right now and he know better being a former president himself. This is the time to watch what he is doing because his wife is running for president. Society is watching him 24/7 and anything he do from now on will hurt his wife in her campaign. Society is waiting on him to mess up. They finally got him with the sleeping mess.

NancyH said...

I do not believe he was intentionally being disrepectful. The man has been on alot of planes lately campaining for a pass to move back into that big white house he used to live in.
He may have had trouble sleeping the night before and ended up taking an over the counter sleep aid too late and then it finally caught up to him when he sat still.
I think maybe he has some PR people that called and vibrated his cell phone to wake him each time we see him stirring awake during the sermon.However, he wanted to return to his dream of Monica.
There are many excuses as to why this type a thing could happen to a person who is under the spotlight twenty-four hours a day when their spouse is a Presidential candidate or any other person for that matter.
I'm sure he and Hillary will come up with a good one to defend this slip up. For all we know,he may have been high!


Gunner said...

Yes, I think that Clinton was being very disrepectful. I know that I have fallen asleep during a sermon before but I am not famous. People look at him daily even though he is not President of the U.S. anymore. Evidently he is not getting enough sleep at night because he thinks about how he cheated on his wife with Monica. He does, although, have alot of resposibilities because he is helping his wife try to win the election. He needs to watch how he does things because this possibly could look bad for Hilary.

Anonymous said...

I think Clinton was being disrespectful, I know he probubally didnt mean to do it intentionally, but I do still think it was rude. A thing like this could happen to anybody at any time, but with it being Bill Clinton of course everybody is going to make a big deal out of this. Especially since his wife is a front runner in the up coming election.
I think that Mr. Clinton is on the campaign trail 24/7 and prob. not able to keep his eyes open, but an ex-president trying to help his wife prob. needs to do everything in his power to stay awake! I know everyone nodds off time after time when someone is giving a speech, but like I said before when you are an ex president of the United States, you might want to keep your eyes open!

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Rosie said...

After all the media attention he has been getting lately for defending comments his wife made. You would think he would have been more careful not to sleep during such an important African American event. Knowing all cameras would be on him.

R. Wickersham said...
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R. Wickersham said...

You know, I have to take this one from my personal experience. In my job I sit through countless meetings and seminars and briefings. Some of these are extremely important, others not so much.

Amazingly, over the years I have had so many of the "very important" ones that they don't get the juices flowing like they used to. Now, I am hard-pressed, no matter how much sleep I have had, to stay awake unless I am actively engaged or truly and deeply interested. If I have seen 10-15 briefings on the same thing, it is more than impossible to stay awake for another one.

I seriously doubt that MLK III had much new to say. I certainly doubt it was of any real interest to a man who, for more than a decade, has sat through countless civil rights speeches and other events with similar or the same messages.

I have heard the man speak (MLK III) and I assure you that he does not have the gift for oration that his father did. Will Bill Clinton's nod at the wheel be taken as an insult? Most assuredly. Is it deserved? Maybe not. Does it matter? No.

Those who will find fault with it would only find fault with some other slight to their fragile egos, perceived or otherwise. It really makes little difference to Clinton. He ran his campaign, he won it and now he is set. His image is expendable to him now. If anyone should be angry with Bill, it's Hillary. I am sure she gave him more than his normal dose of grief when this clip aired!

Tessa Horn said...

I do not think that Mr. Clinton was being disrespectful to Martin Luther King Jr. or Martin Luther King III. Mr. Clinton also fell asleep during Ronald Reagan's funeral. However, Mr. Clinton should have known that he would be on camera during the entire sermon considering that he was siting to the right/left of the speaker. I am quite sure that when Mr. Clinton was President that his staff or others fell asleep during his presentations.
We have all been in this same situation, just maybe not as important, when the speaker is overall boring and no matter what you do, you can not stay awake.
I am sure that with his wife trying to become the next President, he is exhausted. But, he is a role model and so is his wife. He needs to do whatever to stay awake, especially if the event is being broadcast on national television.

Deanna Wilson said...

After watching the video, I have to admit that I laughed. But, I also think that as a former president it is disrespectful. Especially, when your wife is running for president and the media is doing everything they can to make Hilary and the Clinton family look bad. I agree with Nancyh that he probably was not intentionally trying to be disrespectful, but he really did look like he just took an Ambien!
Sure, there have been tons of times that I have drifted off during a lecture, but I think this was a little more serious. I mean, if I knew I was going to be on national TV and everyone and their mom was going to be watching me; I would be doing my best to look interested in what the MLK III was saying. If Hilary were not running for president and this would have been just them at a local church on Sunday morning, I think most people would have just laughed it off. The news would have blown over that day. Since, it was MLK Day and Hilary is campaigning for the presidency it has been made into a much bigger deal.
Yeah, he should not have fallen asleep, but he did and it was a mistake. The man has been traveling like a maniac on the campaign. People should cut him a little slack and start focusing on what his wife is saying. Hopefully, people will be able to move on and focus on more important issues; like who is going to be the next president!

Heather Noble said...

I definitely think that Clinton was being disrespectful. As LaJoyce and Gunner said it's not like he didn't know that he was going to be on camera. Of anyone on the campaign trail, he should know better than to nod off during MLK III's sermon. His wife is running for President and he is a former President, every move they make will be dissected, scrutinized and analyzed by every arm chair quarterback out there looking for a reason to hate the Clinton's.

Do I think that it was intentional? No, but it was pretty funny. I can't say that I haven't fallen asleep during a sermon because I have. Each candidate and their families are under an extreme amount of pressure and the schedules that they maintain currently is exhausting. Of all of the candidates the Clintons are the only ones that are essentially campaigning as a couple. Other candidates wives are able to stay home if necessary to reet up, why is it that that's not acceptable for Mr. and Mrs. Clinton?

sean said...

With the video of former President Clinton sleeping, many people can interperate the video in many ways. One can see the President as a man that is disgracing the honorable memory of one of America's greatest civil rights leaders, or one can see the President as a man that is respecting the honorable memory of one of America's greatest civil rights leaders with his presents. On the other hand, one can see the President as a man. A man that is like any other man or woman on this planet. The former President has been working lately as the public can take notice of on the American stage, and it would be understandable that he has not had much down time. However, he could have managed to find time for rest prior to the ceremony held for Martin Luther King Jr.

Nevertheless, we should not judge Clinton's character for the incident in question. He is a man, and no man is perfect; therefore, the actions he performs by his own hands should be the actions that he is questioned for by the public.

Lauren said...

Wow. It is pretty bad that he was sitting right behind the man speaking and still could not manage to stay awake. It's not like the guy had a monotone voice either.

I know that Bill Clinton leads a very busy life that I would never want to have to do; however, he is a former President of the United States so of course much more is expected out of him than an average citizen. I think it reflects bad on him that he could not stay awake for an important event on a special day.

Barbara said...

After watching the video I think it was disrespectful for Clinton to be napping during the sermon. It also, shows a like of interest and concerns. One thing I did notice while watching the video Clinton looked at his watch, and maybe this meant that the speech was boring or he was ready for the sermon to be over. It was dishearten to see such an outstanding politics figure to show such disinterest in black historic past. If I was tire, and some very important evident was going on I would excuse myself, instead of sitting there napping. When in a position such as Clinton, he have to very careful of the things he do, the way acts, because the media is watching every move he made and is waiting on him to made a mistakes. Therefore, Clinton cannot afford to made a simply mistake especially since Hillary is running for president, and the way Hillary and Obama has been going after each other later.

Jessica said...

Jessica Hunter

First of all..let me say that your title is funny as h***! Second of all I want to say that as an African American I am not offended by this. I have been to a lot of baptist churches with long winded preachers and decided to take a nap. Bill Clinton has tried his hardest to stay awake but sometimes sleeping in places where you shouldnt be provide the greatest sleep.

I have to admit that it does not look good for the Clinton campaign but I cant say that I do not understand. Im sure that once the media gets wind of this they will have a wonderful time smearing the Clinton name once again. I would be more offended by George Bush nooding that Bill Clinton becuase GWB is the one that acts like he knows nothing about the legacy of MLK Jr.

That is all. :)

c.mcnair said...
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c.mcnair said...

In the military, we call it "the A-train," or "Ambien", affectionately. But, we know Mr. Clinton did not deliberately became a sleep-deprived spectacle in the congregation that morning. Americans are fascinating, overworked animals. And, the sooner we dig deep to find some kind of empathy for the least of them, the sooner we apply similar scenarios toward experiential context.

What Mr. Clinton did that morning may well suffer him a long campaign. He must now prove the past decade has not effectively rendered him/her obsolete. This remains to be seen, and the American electoral machine will be left, long after November, to pick up the pieces, with or without Clinton charisma.

Anonymous said...

I understand Mr. Clinton is getting older and may need to nap on occasion, who doesn't? But, he is certainly staying busy in the midst of his wife's campaign. Still, this was disrespectful at such an event. This is Bill being Bill though. He should have excused himself if he was having this bad of a problem, it would not have been the first time someone had excused themselves for exhaustion. It might even have scored them some points in the media. What he did was inexcusable. You don't fall asleep while being watched by so many people, he knew that people had their eyes on him, he's used to it, he was simply being disrespectful.

krc said...
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krc said...

I do not think he was being disrespectful intentionally. I'm sure he has been busy doing a lot during his wife's campaign, and it probably caught up with him finally when he dozed.
I do think however, that someone being in the public eye like he was should have tried to not let it happen knowing there were cameras watching. It does leave a negative effect for Hillary's campaign.

Kimberly Cook

Anonymous said...

I do not think Bill Clinton meant to be disrespectful by noding off during this speech. He has been campaigning hard for his wife and probably has not had any sleep.

Everyone is looking at Bill Clinton right now, and they are looking for negative ways to attack his character and hurt the campaign of his wife. It has obviously been working by Hillary's loss in South Carolina.

Farzana said...

My understanding of the word "disrespectful" is that there must be intent. If the intent to hurt others is absent, it's really a mistake. I doubt very much that Clinton intended to sleep during the speech, and he clearly struggled to stay awake. (I think glancing at his watch should have been avoided however). I appreciate the common sentiment that he should have gotten more rest beforehand, but the truth is, we are not privy to his calender of events and haev no way of knowing whether on that particular day he could have managed more rest. It's also much harder, if you are physically exhausted, to stay awake doing something entirely passive such as listening to a familiar speech,than if you were the one speaking.

So I won't demonize him for his slip. Having said that, he does have the experience in staying awake through endless familiar speeches, and he should have made all efforts to stay awake. If that means a cup of coffee immediately prior to the speech, or playing mental games such as counting up in fibonaci numbers he should know by now what works for him and have done it.

elizabeth bowling said...

I think it is human to fall asleep during a presentation, I know I have, and I don't think I know anyone who hasn't. That being said, none of them were former presidents. I would have expected more from him, or anyone for that matter who has so much experience being in the spotlight for so many years. He should have known better.
I do not think he was intentionally being disrespectful but it did come across that way. There is no reason for a grown man who knows what the days agenda will be to fall asleep especially when he knows there are cameras aimed at him and people will be talking about what all happened that day. I think that he should have taken into consideration the fact that he was tired the night before and not during a speech.

Rebecca said...

I do not believe Clinton was intentionally being disrespectul. I know he has been working very hard campaining for Hillary, and probably did not get enough sleep.I think he should take some time off for himself and get some rest, so he can be ready for the challenge ahead of them.

I can't say I haven't drifted off during church sermons, or even boring presentations at school. Most of the time I would have an article in front of me and when I hold my head down I would pretend like I was reading the program in my hand, so as I looked down with my eyes closed and once I woke up I pretended to have been reading the program. Surely, he wasn't being direspectful, because it would not look very impressive for society or for Hillary.

Mari said...

I couldn’t believe Mr. Clinton did this - I thought it was a joke until one of my friends confirmed that it was true. I understand he is tired because of the campaigning for Hillary but please; stand up, if you are tired. I know none of us are prefect but with the title comes responsibility and respect; therefore, have enough respect for Dr. King's memory to stand up if you are tired or just walk out. Mr. Clinton should have told one of his Secret Service Agents or aids to keep him up. .

For me, Mr. Clinton nodding off made me think twice about the remarks he made to Mr. Obama being in a “fairy tale land”. I always wondered what were Mr. Clinton’s true intentions with those remarks. I am really starting to see him in a new light and I don't like it at all. I know I will not be voting for his wife. I like McCain, at his age - at least he can stay up when he needs too.

Mari A. Brunson

Roslyn W. said...

Although that clip was kind of funny, it was very disrespectful to the MLK III remembrance sermon and he should have tried his hardest to stay focus during the sermon. Maybe the sermon was boring or maybe he had a busy day or a long night before. I don't know which would have been worst, napping during the sermon or just walking out of the sermon but I would have just walked out for a few moments to regain myself. President Clinton knows that you have to make very smart decisions because the media is watching at all times for the perfect story or scandal. I am sure the media ran with this story and Clinton was embarrassed and shame.

With Mrs. Clinton running for President, I ask myself was he trying to get attention because he felt left out? Maybe the cameras wouldn't have caught the clips if he was in the audience but to be on the stage front and center his behavior was very inappropriate during the sermon also negligent to his wife's campaign. President Clinton owes the people of the sermon a big apology for his rude behavior and also for bringing negative attention to Mrs. Clinton election. What if he would have gone completely asleep (snoring) and the speaker had to turn around and address him now that would have topped the cake. VH1 would love to use that clip as one of the most funniest celebrity moments.