‘John Q. Public’ Demands Recitation of the Pledge

In quite-possibly the strangest event in the 2008 presidential campaign so far, a heckler identifying himself as ‘John Q. Public’ interrupted Senator Barack Obama’s (D-IL) town-hall meeting in Berea, Ohio, with complaints that Obama had not had the audience recite the Pledge of Allegiance. The heckler, who has not been identified, carried a professional-grade SLR camera, apparently had press credentials, and was in the press area taking photographs throughout the remainder of the event.

Obama, a consummate presenter to be sure, responded to the interruption by inviting the man to lead the crowd in the Pledgewhich he did—and then thanking him afterward.

While ‘John Q. Public’ wasn’t nearly as obnoxious, pathetic, and immature as certain other hecklers/protesters have been in the past, this is definitely not the way to get your point across. Getting in people’s way, interrupting them, and being an all-around jerk will not win sympathizers to your side. Mr. ‘Public’s’ behavior is especially bizarre, since he wasn’t trying to make a point . . . he just, inexplicably, thought that this political rally should start with the Pledge of Allegiance.

Regardless, kudos to Senator Obama for handling the interruption in a classy, professional manner.

Scott Bradford has been putting his opinions on his website since 1995—before most people knew what a website was. He has been a professional web developer in the public- and private-sector for over twenty years. He is an independent constitutional conservative who believes in human rights and limited government, and a Catholic Christian whose beliefs are summarized in the Nicene Creed. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Administration from George Mason University. He loves Pink Floyd and can play the bass guitar . . . sort-of. He’s a husband, pet lover, amateur radio operator, and classic AMC/Jeep enthusiast.