On Presidents Day we celebrate two of our great heros, Washington and Lincoln, as well as all of the other men that have held the office.  Also, we celebrate the office itself.  The person holding the office is the leader of the free world and the most powerful man on Earth.  Even so, at the end of his term, beloved or reviled, the President will simply walk away, as each of his predecessors has done.  The Presidency is an amazing institution that we Americans are rightfully proud of.

While our nation celebrates Presidents Day, we continue to show less and less respect for the office.  I’ve heard some of my conservative friends talk about how President Obama was actually working for Al-Qaeda.  Likewise, I’ve actually heard some of my liberal friends talk about how President Bush was actually working for the Saudi royal family.  I’ve heard both compared to Adolph Hitler.  Those statements should offend all of us on several levels.

Personally, I was never a fan of George W. Bush.  We are allowed to publically criticize our President; That’s one of the wonderful things about America.  So, for example, I considered Bush to be dim-witted and misguided.  That being said, to suggest he was treasonous or murderous or evil is just nonsense.  I’m sure he did what he thought was best for this country and its citizens at all times.  I just disagree with his ideas of what’s best, that’s all.  And, much as I didn’t like him, I didn’t like seeing somebody throw a shoe at him either.  Disrespecting the President is still disrespecting America!

We are all tired of the negative campaign ads, the constant bickering in Washington, and incredibly adversarial atmosphere between the parties that prevents government from ever getting enough done.  How do we change that?  I believe that a good start would be to show a renewed respect for the office of the President. 

We all need to stop demonizing those leaders with whom we differ on social and economic policy.  We need to recognize that free speech and democracy also applies to people who don’t see it our own way.  This can start by showing a little respect for the presidency, even if you don’t like the current occupant.  The office represents the collective will of our Republic.  Respect for the office is respect for the process.  Respect for the President is respect for democracy, and America.  This can allow us to talk about ideas again.  Let’s give it a try.

 (Of course, you’ll have to ask me if I still feel the same way next February).

About Author

Chicago Accident Lawyer Steven A. Sigmond

Chicago attorney Steven A. Sigmond, a trial lawyer with 35 years experience representing injury victims, blogs about legal news and topics of interest from a trial lawyer's perspective.


  1. I agree the office of the Presidency needs to be respected and Hitler comparisons eliminated, it is naive to say however, that Bush was only dimwitted and misguided. He knowingly lied again and again, leading our country into war, favored economic policies that only the most ignorant or those with ulterior motives could favor, was a proponent of torture, failed to capture of kill Bin Laden when having the chance and according to the 9/11 commission failed to adequately take the necessary steps that arguably could have stopped the terrorist attacks.

    Moreover, Bush is clearly guilty of both war crimes and multiple impeachable offenses. All of this starting from stealing an election, in which numerous studies support indicating that Gore actually won Florida and thus the Presidency.

    As a Liberal, it infuriates me that Bush did so much damage to my country, my life and my child’s life, and all we meek liberals do, is “OH, well, he was dimwitted and misguided. No fellow liberals, the unfortunate reality is that much of what Bush did was with planning and purpose. Generations to come as we are now are suffering for the terror perpetrated by the Bush administration on the U.S. Citizens.

    The latest crop of right wing ideologues should not rose color the memory of Bus 43, or Ronald Reagan for that matter. Today is named “Presidents Day” for Lincoln, Washington and all of the others having served in office. However, just having served, means you served with dignity or honor.

    We need to look no further than President Obama to understand the good the President can do for its people. Having turned the economy, restored international respect, created a healthcare program, saved the auto industry and killing off Bin Laden, to name a few of his accomplishments, portends for more good to come as the office of the Presidency is today shining like a bright light on a mountain top, representing the likes of Washington, Jefferson, Madison, Lincoln, Kennedy and Obama and others who have served us proudly.,

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