Now, maybe cats called "Zamboni" shouldn't be tossing off comments about people's names, or reactions to names.
But Representative Steve King is an idiot.
The Iowa Republican who claimed that Al Qaeda would "dance in the streets" if Obama were elected — hey, the only crowds we saw dancing in the streets that night were Americans — now is all tied up in knots about President-elect Obama's plans to use his full name when he's sworn in next Tuesday.
Steve! We have a message for you, and we want you to listen very carefully. His name is Barack Hussein Obama. That's the way it is. He was given that name in 1961, and it has nothing, absolutely nothing, to do with September 11, the current situation in the Middle East, or the dead guy who used to run the country that we invaded on a lie. We think that the 65 million people who voted for him on November 4 understood that.
Besides, it reflects his family heritage, which for the first time for a President in over 200 years is not white or Anglo-Saxon-y. So when you think about it, "Hussein" isn't really any weirder than, say, "Quincy," "Birchard," "Gamaliel," or — our personal favorite — "Milhous." And of course Harry Truman had no middle name, only a middle initial, but we digress.
Mr. King also claims that Presidents do not have a tradition of answering to their full names at Inaugurations, and that, therefore, Mr. Obama shouldn't use his, either. But Mr. King is completely wrong. In fact, we cats vividly remember the frisson of surprise that ran through the crowd in 1977 when Chief Justice Warren Burger said, "I, James Earl Carter," and the 39th President replied, "I, Jimmy Carter..."
So. Steve. Cut it out. You're acting like a clown. We cats HISS at you, and dump our dirty litter box on your head.