As you probably know, the Obama administration has set up a "We the people" section on the White House web site so as to solicit petitions from the American people. While there are a few well thought-out petitions, the majority just serve to demonstrate that many Americans have no idea how our federal government is designed to work nor what the function of the Executive branch is. For example:
- Amend the Constitution, making the Internet an unalienable right. Newsflash: the president does not have the power to add amendments to the constitution. Not even close. Petition for it all you want, he can't make this happen.
- Void the voting results that took place in Nicaragua this past Sunday 06 of November due to fraud by the FSLN. Seriously? He's the President of the United States. When did Nicaragua become a state?
- Legalize Mixed Martial Arts in New York. The President doesn't pass laws, much less state laws. You too are barking up the wrong tree.
- Re-establish and maintain the separation between investment banks and commercial banks. I'm 100% for the restoration of the Glass-Steagall Act...but the President doesn't pass laws. You need to petition your Congress-critters to get this done, not the Obama administration.
- Bar courts and lawmakers from a "second-class religion" status for minority religions like Wicca and NeoPaganism. He's the President, not Dictator; he can neither tell courts nor lawmakers what to do. Have you not heard of the separation of powers?
- Actually take these petitions seriously instead of just using them as an excuse to pretend you are listening. See above. I imagine it is hard to respond to petitions demanding the President to do things he has no legal power to do. Well, respond with something other than "/facepalm", that is.
I'm sure some of the authors of the above petitions would try and defend their misdirected efforts at government participation by pointing out that neither the Senate nor the House of Representatives offers a similar venue for soliciting petitions. That is true, and it is unfortunate. But that doesn't change the fact that the White House cannot act on many of the petitions. And, when some staffer writes a lengthy explanation of what the Executive branch has been doing to try and support your cause, it is doubly unfortunate that you don't seem to comprehend that it is all that he can do to support your cause.
If you want to change the laws, you need to write your Congressman. It isn't the President's job to get your Congressman to vote the way you want.