June 19th, 2009
06:00 PM ET

How can Obama impact fathers and families?



FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Sunday is Father's Day... and President Obama won't let it go by unnoticed.

He's devoting a large part of today to promoting the importance of being a good father as a national goal. The president is attending a series of events around Washington - including a town hall on personal responsibility and inviting boys from local schools to the White House. He's joined by high-profile athletes, actors and celebrities.

The president also wrote an essay that will appear in Parade magazine on Sunday. In it, he talks about growing up without a father around; and how that helped him understand the importance of fatherhood. Mr. Obama states:

"We need fathers to step up, to realize that their job does not end at conception; that what makes you a man is not the ability to have a child but the courage to raise one."

The president admits that he's an imperfect father - making mistakes, and sometimes allowing work to interfere with his responsibilities as a dad.

On the campaign trail last year, Mr. Obama often talked about the importance of fathers being present and active - especially within the African-American community.

There are about 24-million children growing up with absent fathers in this country; a disproportionate number of them are black. These children are more likely to fall into poverty and crime, and become parents themselves as teens.

Here’s my question to you: What kind of impact can President Obama have on fathers and families?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: President Barack Obama
June 19th, 2009
05:00 PM ET

Global impact if Iran protests are successful

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

After a week of mostly peaceful protests in Iran - it seems like the demonstrators may now be headed for a showdown with the government. Iran's supreme leader is warning of a crackdown on protesters if they continue their massive street rallies.

Iranian supporters of defeated reformist presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi demonstrate in Tehran.

The Ayatollah Ali Khamenei says opposition leaders will be held accountable for "all the violence, bloodshed and rioting" if they don't stop. He also says the re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad wasn't rigged, and pretty much ruled out any chance for a new vote.

This leaves supporters of the opposition candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi with two options: either pack up and go home or continue to protest... knowing that things could get ugly.

Khamenei insists Iran won't see another revolution, and that the street protests won't have any impact. But, what if he's wrong?

What if the 70-year-old supreme leader isn't in tune with the majority of Iranians - 70-percent of whom are under 30-yearsold and tech savvy? Already - these protests represent the greatest challenge to Iran's Islamic rulers since the 1979 revolution.

The hundreds of thousands of protesters could end up influencing Iran's relations with nations around the globe - from the U-S to Europe to Israel; not to mention what a revolution in Iran could mean for citizens of neighboring countries like Pakistan and Saudi Arabia.

Here’s my question to you: What would it mean to the rest of the world if the protesters in Iran are successful?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: Global matters • Iran
June 19th, 2009
04:00 PM ET

If N. Korea fires missile toward Hawaii, is time for talking over?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

U.S relations with North Korea seem to get more tense with each passing day. Defense Secretary Robert Gates says the U.S. could defend itself if North Korea launches a missile toward Hawaii.

S. Korean activists carry a mock missile at a rally in Seoul.

Gates says there are missile interceptors and radar equipment deployed, and "we are in a good position should it become necessary to protect American territory."

This comes after a Japanese newspaper reported that North Korea might fire its most advanced ballistic missile toward Hawaii sometime around July 4. Although the missile isn't expected to reach U.S. territory - it would be a real slap in the face to the U.S. and the international community.

And there's more... the U.S. is also tracking a North Korean ship in the Pacific; it's believed to be carrying illegal weapons or technology.

North Korea has been making waves since May - when it conducted a nuclear test, fired test rockets and threatened U.S. and South Korean ships near its waters. Also last month, U.S. satellites spotted vehicle activity at a North Korean ballistic missile facility.

The UN has since slapped new sanctions on the country... to which North Korea responded with threats of war and promises to expand its nuclear bomb-making program.

Meanwhile, a new Gallup poll shows more Americans view North Korea as a direct threat to U.S. security than any other country in this survey. President Obama says the country's nuclear program is a grave threat to the world.

Here’s my question to you: If North Korea fires a missile toward Hawaii, is the time for talking over?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: North Korea