Socialist Party Member/Union Boss Being To Receive Presidential Freedom Medal

AFL-CIO President John Sweeney speaks at a American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) rally in support of health care reform at AFL-CIO headquarters in Washington on August 31, 2009. Congress is expected to resume the health care debate when it returns from a rancorous recess after Labor Day. UPI/Roger L. Wollenberg Photo via Newscom

The Presidential Medal of Freedom, created by President Harry S. Truman as the highest government award that could be bestowed upon an civilian, is supposed to reward “an especially meritorious contribution to the security or national interests of the United States, world peace, cultural or other significant public or private endeavors.”

I guess, depending on your perspective, the work of a union boss who is also an avowed socialist could fall into that category. But I have to ask: What business of an ideological proponent of government-run everything have accepting an award that has “freedom” in the title? Government is, after all, the opposite of freedom. We give up a bit of our freedom in exchange for a certain level of government.

But more government means less freedom. Socialists are, by definition, opposed to freedom.

And former AFL-CIO union boss John Sweeney is absolutely a socialist.

President Obama today named AFL-CIO President Emeritus John Sweeney as a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor. The award is presented to individuals who have made especially meritorious contributions to the security or national interests of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors.

Sweeney was among 15 recipients, with President Obama stating that “these outstanding honorees come from a broad range of backgrounds and they’ve excelled in a broad range of fields, but all of them have lived extraordinary lives that have inspired us, enriched our culture, and made our country and our world a better place. I look forward to awarding them this honor.”

According to Sweeney’s Wikipedia page he was once a “prominent” member of the Democratic Socialists of America. And it’s worth nothing that Obama himself signed up as a member of the DSA back in 1995.

Now, there may be some people in America who have no problem with honoring a socialist in this manner, but I do. If our government is going to celebrate our citizens they should find citizens who promote ideals in keeping with America’s founding principles. Socialism is the antithesis of those principles.

Rob Port

Rob Port is the editor of In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters.

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