TOKYO — President Barack Obama this week became the second president to bomb in Hiroshima, after becoming the first sitting president to visit the site of the world’s first atomic attack and giving a speech that was widely criticized in the press and on social media.
“I would like to apologize on behalf of all Americans for the bombing of my Hiroshima speech,” Obama said in a statement. “I know it left some people feeling burned, even ill. But I am sure the fallout will be easy to contain here in Japan.”
Proponents of a nuclear-free world were hopeful Obama would use the speech to lay out a detailed action plan to quash nuclear proliferation. However, the need to overhaul American nuclear weapons to the tune of $1 trillion over the next three decades, along with the president taking the stage while The Gap Band’s “You Dropped A Bomb On Me” played cast a large cloud over the speech.
The song choice and speech, which failed to mention anything about the 1945 atomic bombing that many say ended World War II, was highly controversial on social media.
“When are we going to tackle real issues like tentacle porn and panty vending machines?” one person asked on Twitter.
Another user, named @TheGodzillazzz, wrote: “I for one, approve any and all nuclear testing. #Trump2016.”
Given the negative press, some of Obama’s staff questioned whether the speech was even necessary. Just his presence, sources said, should have been enough to contain the Japanese people’s attention. However, the effects of the speech may take decades for those like college student Tanzan Kishi to overcome.
“One minute I was listening to the speech, and then there was a flash, and then I felt an intense pain all over my back,” said Kishi, who attended the Hiroshima speech.
“But then again, I was tased by Secret Service agents while trying to climb over a barrier, so I don’t really know what [Obama] said.”
President Obama hopes to regain momentum during his visit to Kokoura three days from now, but stated that he may move his speech to Nagasaki if the weather is not cooperating.