As President Obama exchanges the friendly “brother” handshake with Venezuelan dictator-wannabe-almost is, Hugo Chavez, headlines are shouting the demise of liberty in that country. I’ve listed some of those headlines below – headlines from all over the world, but first I want to say a few words about that handshake, because it is no mere greeting.
I ran across a blog by James Burnett, Burnett’s Urban Etiquette. His profile says he is a newspaper reporter and radio correspondent, currently writing for the Miami Herald. Mr. Burnett writes about behavior, good deeds, etc., as well as current events – An August 2006 entry is about The Handshake. Here is a snippet:
You know what I mean by that handshake though – not the standard, traditional firm grip with one or two shakes. I’m talking the light slap of palms, the gladiator grip, and the ending with a flourish, maybe a finger snap or two.
Back in the day they called it “dap.” And I once wrote on another blog in another life that “Dap is that coolest of handshakes. It’s the urban greeting that says ‘I could just grip your hand squeeze and shake twice, but you and I have an understanding, so I am going to throw some ‘English’ on this handshake and jazz it up a little, as a sign of our friendship and mutual respect.” That’s right. That handshake….dap is a personal handshake, not to be traded without forethought.
Burnett’s blog has a new url and a new name these days. The Handshake is left behind, but you can find him here.
Here are the Chavez headlines. It’s an old familiar story. Why is our President giving this guy “The Handshake?”
Opposition accuses Chavez of power grab after ballot:
Chavez has concentrated power since Feb. 15 vote eliminating term limits
Chavez Opponents protest moves to erode power, sideline key critics in Venezuela:
Soldiers have seized ports controlled by governors of the opposition
Top Chavez opponent disappears …; opposition says he could be in danger
Mayor faces corruption charges. Opposition believes no chance of a fair trial.
New Law Weakens Anti-Chavez Mayor
A government-appointed official takes over the city of Caracas
As Venezuela’s Chavez silences critics, opponents lash back:
Mayor denounced Chavez as a tyrant…trampling on the Venezuelan Constitution
Foe of Hugo Chavez arrested in Venezuela:
A prominent political adversary of Chavez was arrested at gunpoint
Remember November 2006 when the protests against Chavez began?
Hugo Chavez Quotes, leaving out those vile attacks on President G.W. Bush:
“I am convinced that the path to a new, better and possible world is not capitalism, the path is socialism.”
“I have said it already, I am convinced that the way to build a new and better world is not capitalism. Capitalism leads us straight to hell.” “I hereby accuse the North American empire of being the biggest menace to our planet.” “The left is back, and it’s the only path we have to get out of the spot to which the right has sunken us, … Socialism builds and capitalism destroys.”
How about the Venezuelan people brave enough to protest their loss of freedom? How about the Venezuelan citizens who realize what’s coming their way? How will President Obama show his solidarity with those people in Venezuela? “The Handshake” is not a promising sign for Venezuela or America.