A viral YouTube video capturing a young boy praying for–or to–Barack Obama has ignited outrage in cyberspace, generating hundreds of negative comments from viewers.
The video, Prayer for President Barack Obama, was posted on Sunday, and soon skyrocketed in hits shortly after being uploaded. An African American boy named Steven introduces the recording as being his prayer for Obama.
“Barack Obama, thank you for doing everything and all the kind stuff,” he begins, head bowed, eyes tightly closed. “Thank you for all the stuff that you helped us with. Thank you for taking the courage and responsibility for everything you have done for us.”
“God has given you a special power,” he continues, “And you are going to handle it just fine.”
The boy’s prayer then ends with an exaltation.
“You are good, Barack Obama. You are great,” he says. “And when you get older, you will be able to do great things.”
The video closes with the young boy throwing his hands in the air, proclaiming, “Barack Obama!”
Response to the video has been largely negative.
“As long as we are praying to Obama, allow me to add my sentiments,” one viewer wrote. “Thank you Barack Obama for all the children your drone strikes have killed and will continue to kill. Thank you for spying on U.S. citizens en masse. Thank you for undermining the Constitution and Bill of Rights every chance you get. Yes, you are truly great!”
“Thank you for a free Obama phone. Thank you for having millions of Americans on food stamps. Thank you for an economy that is in the crapper. … Should I go on?” another posted. “Oh yeah, and thanks for me and my wife being first unemployed and now underemployed.”
Some stated that they felt sorry for the child and criticized his parents.
“Wow, that’s not sacrilegious or blasphemous in any way,” one viewer wrote sarcastically. “I feel bad for this kid being so heavily brainwashed.”
“Praying as if Obama is a god–Well, he’s only a kid; He doesn’t know any better,” another wrote. “But the parents who uploaded this do. To the parents: Obama is not God, ok, he’s just a man.”
Other comments were harsh and laced with profanity.
While many were shocked by the video, controversy over perceived Obama worship has been erupting since the 2008 election. As previously reported, writer Dave Jolly notes that during the election, Maggie Mertens, associate editor for the Smith College newspaper, penned an article entitled I Will Follow Him: Obama as My Personal Jesus.
“Obama is my homeboy. And I’m not saying that because he’s black – I’m saying that in reference to those Urban Outfitters t-shirts from a couple years ago that said, ‘Jesus is my homeboy,’” she wrote. “Yes, I just said it. Obama is my Jesus.”
Additionally, to mark Obama’s 100th day of presidency, artist Michael D’Antuono unveiled a painting that depicted Obama in the oval office wearing a crown of thorns and raising his arms as if on the cross.
During the Democratic National Convention last September, a number of vendors offered products that depicted Obama as a type of messiah. One poster that was sold at the DNC displayed the head of Obama, which faded into a graphic of an open Bible with the word “Barak” highlighted. Above Obama was the headline “Prophesy Fulfilled.” T-shirts were also sold by vendors that cite Psalm 110:1, which says, “The Lord said unto my Lord, ‘Sit Thou at My right hand until I make Thine enemies Thy footstool.’” Additionally, Obama calendars were up for sale, which used Scripture for each month of the year to point to Obama.
Prior to the 2012 election season, Florida A&M professor Barbara A. Thompson also penned a book entitled The Gospel According to Apostle Barack in which she claimed that she was given a series of dreams by God where she was able to realize Obama’s purpose as the leader of the free world.
“I learned that Jesus walked the earth to create a more civilized society; Martin (Luther King) walked the earth to create a more justified society, but, Apostle Barack, the name he was called in my dreams, would walk the earth to create a more equalized society for the middle class and working poor,” Thompson wrote. “Apostle Barack, the next young leader with a new cause, had been taken to the mountaintop and allowed to see over the other side. He had the answers to unlock the kingdom of ‘heaven here on earth’ for his followers.”