When there’s a war, a recession, a ring of Russian spies, and a salmonella outbreak, how dare the man in charge of it all take a week’s vacation? This seems to be the perspective of many Americans, who insist that a week spent on Martha’s Vineyard with his family indicates insensitivity and negligence on the part of President Obama.
The First Family Can Never Escape
When First Lady Michelle Obama spent time in Spain this summer with one of her daughters, news outlets had a field day. “Look at her gallivanting around Spain!” they exclaimed. “Let’s see what this will do for her approval ratings.” And what it did was decrease them—all because of a vacation (sans Mr. President, who stayed home to work). CNN reports that Clinton took polls during his second term in office to determine where he should vacation, and consequently visited the national parks.
How Human Are They Allowed To Be?
One of the Obamas’ great selling points is their accessibility. They have two young girls and a fuzzy new puppy, and they go on talk shows and give magazine interviews to let the American public as far as possible into the White House. As a result, the general perception of the President is that he’s “just one of us”; he doesn’t own a vast ranch in Texas or a private yacht. But why should we expect “one of us” to deal with crisis situations and political minefields on a daily basis for 365 days each year?
The President Has The Right Idea
We always recommend that LearnVesters take all of their sick and vacation days. They’re yours, and you should have them. We also don’t want to set the precedent that we can be expected to work every single day—mental health and stress relief are serious considerations, and ignoring them can take a toll on our health. From an LV perspective, the President is rightfully taking his vacation days. And if we miss him, we’ll know where to find him: we bet he’ll check into Facebook Places.
Tell us in the comments: Does the President deserve a vacation?