"What Is Missing at Obama's Press Conference? Flags."
Netlore Archive: Forwarded email accompanied by image of Barack Obama holding a White House press conference with no American flags on display claims he is the first U.S. president to do so.
Description: Forwarded email
Circulating since: May 2010
Status: Mixed (see details below)
Email contributed by Becci B., June 4, 2010:
Subject: BO SHUNS AMERICAN FLAGS AT HIS PRESS CONFERENCE
Obama: First U.S. President to hold Press Conference without the American Flags Present.
Posted on Friday, May 28, 2010 2:30:07 AM by Retired Intelligence Officer
Did anybody notice at President Obama's Press Conference on the Deep Water Horizon disaster than something was missing in the background? I noticed something didn't look right and then it hit me. The American Flags was missing behind. Why? Behind him was just yellow curtains, and a couple of gold columns with chandeliers.
I went and researched and looked at all photos of many press conferences (not press briefings) of past presidents as far as I could go and low and behold the American Flags stood proudly behind the President or off to the side. What was the reason for this? This was Obama's first formal press conference since July of 09 which at that conference were U.S. Flags present. I am pretty sure this time that they had plenty of time to plan this and get it right?
So, maybe there was another motive for the flags absence. We know Obama (or his handlers) carefully choreograph his image, his appearances... It's why he's so teleprompter-dependent. Surely he and his advisers know that flag issues have been a lightning rod -- even before he was elected. I think this was deliberate. Could it be that Obama really is ashamed of America? Could it be that he thinks he is the citizen of the world which has no flag? Ladies and gentlemen this is very disturbing coming from the office of the Presidency. This is not normal to not have the symbol of the United States and its government in the east room of the White House and it is not very Presidential either. Many patriotic brave men and women have died under the stars and stripes called old glory. This fiasco coupled with the President skipping the laying of the Wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington Cemetery this Memorial Day speaks volumes of the man (or Usurper) that sits in the Oval Office. What say you?
(Dennis Miller commented that it looks like Obama is standing in front of shower curtains. Another problem that has been pointed out is that this was a Press Conference not a prepared speech, so why the teleprompters? MT)
Illegal immigration is destroying America !! Just look what it did to the White House !!
Email contributed by Yvonne S., June 6, 2010:
Subject: Fw: What is missing at Obama's press conference?
No it is not the teleprompters. See the other presidents pics for a clue.
What is missing at Barack Hussein Obama's press conference?
And I don't believe it was just an accident! It is intentional. So I ask, why is it intentional? He told you he would change America, didn't he?
Vote in November like your way of life depended on it !
Analysis: It's true that there are no full-size American flags visible in photos and video of President Obama's May 27, 2010 press conference addressing the BP oil spill.
It's also true that the settings of such events do typically include at least one U.S. flag.
It's not true, however, that Obama is the first president to hold a press conference without U.S. flags on display.
Photos exist showing Ronald Reagan speaking to reporters in a flagless White House press room on more than one occasion. There are images of Jimmy Carter and Richard Nixon doing the same. George W. Bush held outdoor press briefings unadorned with U.S. flags.
More to the point, the partisan narrative these emails impart that of an "unpatriotic" President who "shuns the flag" because he is "ashamed of America" is undermined by other press photos taken at the same event showing Obama was wearing an American flag pin on his lapel.
Obama Refuses to Salute Flag, Anthem?
Urban Legends, 30 October 2007
Obama (Supposedly) Explains Why He Doesn't Salute the Flag
Urban Legends, 10 April 2010
Obama's 'Crotch Salute' Returns?
Urban Legends, 23 November 2009
Obama's Left-Handed Flag Salute
Urban Legends, 6 January 2010
Sources and further reading:
Obama Press Conference: 'Anger and Frustration' Over Oil Spill
Christian Science Monitor, 27 May 2010
Ronald Reagan Press Briefing - Photo
Life, 4 August 1986
Brady Press Briefing Room
White House Museum
Last updated: 06/18/10