Flies Over Colorado Speaks at Hospital without Prepared Text, Visits Victims and Families
Conservatives are in a rage this morning that the White House released a photo of President Obama visiting with heroine Stephanie Davies and shooting victim Allie Young at the University of Colorado Hospital.
Although the media was barred from the visit, this morning the White House released one photo, in order to inspire Americans. After all, 21-year-old Stephanie saved her friend Allie’s life. A grieving nation needs to hear about brave acts like Stephanie’s; it reminds us of what is best in us as we struggle to make sense with the monsters among us.
Naturally, this means the President is being “tacky” and politicizing a tragedy, also known as actually showing up (instead of peering out of the window of Air Force One like conservatives favored leader, President Bush).
The President spoke at the University of Colorado Hospital in Aurora, Colorado last night, after visiting victims and their families without media. Watch here:
The President said, “Scripture says that “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more. Neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” And when you have an opportunity to visit with families who have lost their loved ones — as I described to them, I come to them not so much as President as I do as a father and as a husband. And I think that the reason stories like this have such an impact on us is because we can all understand what it would be to have somebody that we love taken from us in this fashion — what it would be like and how it would impact us.”
Compassion. Relating to the victims and their families as a parent and husband. We’re not supposed to like this about our President.
The President noted that while the perpetrator was getting much attention right now, in time, the attention would shift to the stories of the victims.
Then the President shared the inspiring story from the photo released this morning; the story of Stephanie and her friend Allie. Obama shared, “There’s one particular story I want to tell because this was the last visit that I had and I think it’s representative of everything that I saw and heard today. I had a chance, just now, about five minutes ago, to visit with Allie Young — Allie is 19 years old — and I also had a chance to visit with Allie’s best friend, Stephanie Davies, who’s 21. Stephanie was actually downstairs with Allie as well as Allie’s parents when I walked into the room.
And I don’t think this story has been heard — at least I hadn’t read it yet — but I wanted to share it with you. When the gunman initially came in and threw the canisters, he threw them only a few feet away from Allie and Stephanie, who were sitting there watching the film. Allie stood up, seeing that she might need to do something or at least warn the other people who were there. And she was immediately shot. And she was shot in the neck, and it punctured a vein, and immediately she started spurting blood.
And apparently, as she dropped down on the floor, Stephanie — 21 years old — had the presence of mind to drop down on the ground with her, pull her out of the aisle, place her fingers over where she — where Allie had been wounded, and applied pressure the entire time while the gunman was still shooting. Allie told Stephanie she needed to run. Stephanie refused to go — instead, actually, with her other hand, called 911 on her cell phone.
Once the SWAT team came in, they were still trying to clear the theater. Stephanie then, with the help of several others, carries Allie across two parking lots to where the ambulance is waiting. And because of Stephanie’s timely actions, I just had a conversation with Allie downstairs, and she is going to be fine.
I don’t know how many people at any age would have the presence of mind that Stephanie did, or the courage that Allie showed. And so, as tragic as the circumstances of what we’ve seen today are, as heartbreaking as it is for the families, it’s worth us spending most of our time reflecting on young Americans like Allie and Stephanie, because they represent what’s best in us, and they assure us that out of this darkness a brighter day is going to come.”
Out of this darkness a better day will come… Shares inspiring story that represents the best in us, attempting to remind us that all is not horror. You know, like a good leader does; he is pointing us to the best in us.
Conservative reaction? A sampling from Mediaite this morning, wherein they accuse the President of being tacky and express their confusion over why a photo like this would be released (one wonders if Issa will start another investigation):
Just a littl etacky to release a picture….can he do anything without a political side to it! PHONY!!!!
It’s clearly a photo op for the president and it’s tacky to release this photo literally days after the tragedy. Have some class, do it later.
Not a much higher setting of the bar for Obama.
Obama seems to show up around a lot of tragedies. More so than any President in my lifetime. It all started with His Royal Highness having a beer with a couple of guys in Boston.
Yes, tacky tacky tacky.
Me me me me.
President probably worked a Fund Raiser or two in
on the way back.
and on the way. hell he prolly had one at the hospital! Lol
Whats the purpose of releasing pics of the victims?
Have they no shame? Must they carry their hatred into every single moment of our national debate? I could say that conservatives are “politicizing” Stephanie’s story by hating it because they hate this President, but perhaps it’s just that conservatives find compassion icky and gross. One thing is certain; water seeks its own level.
Expect conservatives to continue raining on this small saving grace – this moment of Stephanie’s love for her friend saving her life. We are not allowed to even have a moment of warmth. If it were up to conservatives, we would live in the dregs of hatred and rage, swimming in heightened fear and anticipation of what they view as inevitable, assuming that all people are the worst among us and arming ourselves with nuclear weapons and automatics in a terror-filled race to the bottom.
But we can ignore the joy trolls among us, and take a moment to appreciate this story – the inherent love for humanity and bravery of Stephanie’s actions and the swell of relief that she saved her friend’s life, in the wake of such tragedy. And we can take the President’s message to heart, “Out of this darkness, a brighter day is going to come.”
This, ladies and gentlemen, is what conservatives hate about this President. He is, in fact, an example of what is best in us. He not only showed up, he spoke to the victims and their families and as a leader, he found a way to relate to them as a human being while also offering us a glimpse of light out of the dark despair.
It’s sort of like flying over the post-Katrina devastation of New Orleans in Air Force One, peering out of the window removed and ensconced in awkward, bumbling, blue-blooded privilege, only not. And yes, it matters. It matters that our President has the ability to lead us in dark times, that he can step in and fill the void with something that reminds us of who we can be, who we are at our best. It’s a course he’s setting us on: Don’t be the worst of us, be the best of us. Be someone like Stephanie.