Saturday, April 18, 2009
Just One Question Mr. President
Georgetown University hid a religious inscription representing the name of Jesus during President Obama’s address there Tuesday, because White House staff asked the school to cover up all religious symbols and signs while the president was on stage.
The monogram IHS, whose letters spell out the name of Jesus, and which normally perches above the stage in Gaston Hall where the president spoke, was covered over with what appeared to be black wood during the address.
“In coordinating the logistical arrangements for the event, Georgetown honored the White House staff’s request to cover all of the Georgetown University signage and symbols behind the Gaston Hall stage,” university spokesman Andy Pino said.
The White House said that the backdrop, which included blue drapes and a host of American flags, was standard during policy speeches and other events.
Georgetown is a private Catholic institution founded by Jesuits in 1789. The auditorium where the president spoke Tuesday is adorned with religious imagery, but only the symbols directly on the stage – those likely to be picked up by a television camera–were obscured.
The White House insisted that the move was made only to provide a proper setting for the speech—and said that “any suggestions to the contrary are simply false.”
I have just one question, just one: “Mr. President, what’s the problem you seem to have with Jesus?”