A Study in Contrast and Conviction
Peter Barker of the New York Times wrote recently of President Obama's awkward task when speaking at the dedication of President Bush's presidential library after having so criticized President Bush for 4+ years. He turned to Michael Waldman, one of President Clinton's speech writers. Waldman's advice was:
“When a president dedicates the library of someone he opposed politically, it’s interesting and a bit of a challenge. . . .The best thing to do is focus on something that you can really embrace and mean it.”
By all accounts, the President did a decent job of that at the library's opening. Now, apply that to the President's speech at Planned Parenthood's national conference Friday. What does he embrace? Does he mean it?
Now, study a different contrast in conviction. Consider John Piper's words from soon after President Obama was inaugurated.
Watch both videos below and consider what their speechwriters have chosen for them to focus on, knowing what the speaker wants to really embrace . . . and mean.