Jocelyn Noveck, reporting for the Associated Press, published an article today after spending the last two days interviewing dog owners and other members of the public about this issue. Her conclusion:
"Virtually everyone interviewed gave Obama a pass on the dog meat, calling it a cultural difference."
- end of update-
I woke up early this morning to my phone ringing. It was a reporter, wanting to know the reaction of Dogs Against Romney to "new information" brought up by Romney campaign operatives. I asked her to read it to me. It seems they dug up some info from President Obama's book in which he wrote that he once was fed dog meat, as a young child, while in Indonesia with his family.
"How old was he?" I asked her. "I don't know," she said, "maybe 10."
"I think dog meat is fairly common, culturally, in Indonesia, isn't it?" I asked. She said she wasn't sure.
Still a little groggy from being awakened, I found it easy to come my conclusion: "I think it sounds pretty desperate on the part of the Romney campaign to bring this up as if it compares in any way to what Romney did."
"Elaborate," she requested.
"Well," I said, "it seems desperate for the Romney campaign to bring up something that happened to Obama when he was 10-years old, not preparing his own meals, in a country where eating dog meat probably isn't all that unusual - as if it compares in any way to Romney, as a 36-year old adult, in America, making the conscious decision to strap his family pet to the roof of a car for a 12-hour drive, and leaving it up there even after it got sick."
"Why do you think they brought it up, then?" She asked.
"I think they are desperate to divert attention from what Romney did." I answered.
She thanked me and hung up. I could already hear her keyboard clicking.
As soon as that interview ended, I Googled "Indonesia dog meat" and found a Wikipedia page about it. I found that people do, indeed, consume dog meat there - but not the Muslims.
I've had more time to think about all this now, fully awake. If President Obama had made the conscious decision to eat dog meat as a 36-year old adult, in America, claimed the dog liked being eaten, and still claimed he didn't think there was anything wrong with it, the Romney campaign would have a point and my pack would be on the president like a pack of wild, well....dogs.
But that isn't what happened.