Grading Obama's Speech at Notre Dame, Meeting with Israeli PM Netanyahu

Bloggers on Obama, Israel, Netanyahu, Notre Dame, abortion, and Woody Allen.


Our daily look at stories and topics that are lighting up the Internets:

Obama at Notre Dame, Pro

As we noted in today's Public Opinion, controversy has been brewing within the Catholic community over Obama's commencement speech at Notre Dame delivered over the weekend. A transcript of the speech is available here. Reactions to the speech within the blogosphere are mostly positive, but that doesn't mean the pros and the cons can't be neatly divided. So let's get to the positive reviews: Andrew Sullivan thinks Obama's message will hit home with Catholics: "I believe that these sentiments will resonate with all Catholics of good will and serious purpose. When we are called by God to oppose the evils of abortion or torture or terror, we need to remain civil and fair and attuned to the calm that comes from knowing that we fight the good fight." Conservative Mary Kate Cary is energized by the president's words: "It's one of the best he's ever given. If you do nothing else today, read this speech." Amy Sullivan breaks down Obama's decision to deliver the commencement speech here. "In some ways, the half-hour address was a great example of Obama doing precisely what he enjoys doing," writes Steve Benen. "It was clearly the right call." And liberal columnist E.J. Dionne's positive review into today's Washington Post had quite a few bloggers talking. Money quote: "By facing their arguments head-on and by demonstrating his attentiveness to Catholic concerns, Obama strengthened moderate and liberal forces inside the church itself."

Obama at Notre Dame, Con

Conservative Allahpundit is unhappy with the whole thing. Here's a video he posts to give you a sense of the depth of the controversy. Elsewhere he writes: "I'd accept legal abortion in the very, very early stages of pregnancy, before the embryo can feel pain—but I sympathize enough with true-believing pro-lifers to see how insulting the 'agree to disagree' approach must be to the depth of their conviction." David Freddoso thinks Notre Dame's invitation was a bad choice: "To tomorrow's Catholic leaders, Notre Dame has said that the direct and deliberate taking of innocent human life through abortion is just one issue among many, and nothing worth getting too upset about." Conservative Kathryn Jean Lopez doesn't like the E.J. Dionne op-ed we linked to above. And Jay Nordlinger covers Tiger Woods, disrespect, and patriotism while siding with the protesters of Obama's speech.

Bibi and Barack

One is a genius, the other's insane. (Admittedly, that last sentence was completely uncalled for, but we've been waiting for an excuse to link to that video for a while now). The Israeli PM was at the White House today, discussing the future of the Middle East with Obama. And the question that everyone's asking is: will Bibi and Barack, amid potentially rising tensions between the two leaders' policies, cooperate or clash? Tony Karon explains the six issues that divide Obama and Netanyahu. Stephen Walt dreams up the perfect meeting between the two. Conservative Max Boot is searching for the next Sadat, but he feels like he's waiting for Godot. Marc Ambinder tells us everything we need to know about the visit, putting today's meeting in the context of Obama's upcoming speech from Cairo addressed to the Muslim world. And liberal Jeffrey Goldberg explains what's on Netanyahu's mind in yesterday's New York Times.

... Meanwhile ...

Controversy over Rumsfeld returns, this time more "religulous" than the last... Meet the slingshot senior citizen (hat tip to Chris Bodenner)... Woody Allen wins (millions) from American Apparel... And medical marijuana wins too.