Rooney: We're All Americans ...

<b>Andy Rooney</b> Gets Feedback On His Speech For The President

A weekly commentary by CBS News Correspondent Andy Rooney.
Last week, just for fun, I wrote a speech I said I'd like to have President Bush give.

I hoped it was both amusing and true, but a lot of people didn't think it was either.

There were angry letters and angry phone calls. Some of them were never going to watch 60 Minutes again.

"I'll never watch 60 Minutes again," said one caller. "I do a national radio show and I'm going to make sure everyone knows my opinion."

"Andy, apologize next week or you'll never hear from me again. That is ---- what you did to this country tonight," said another viewer. "Don't do it again...OK. … Please knock this ----- off, OK? Be an American."

Fortunately for my ego, there were also a lot of calls and letters saying it was the best thing I ever did.

One viewer called it "a classic piece." Another said: "It was brief, it's short and it was the best thing I've ever seen him do."

I don't know whether you think I'm a liberal or a conservative, a Republican or a Democrat. Whatever you think, you're probably wrong. I tend to be more liberal than conservative, but don't count on it. I'm not middle-of-the-road. I'm all over the road.

I wish Americans weren't so viciously biased, though. We're all so nasty talking politics.

If people disagree with the president, why do they have to hate him? George W. Bush is not an evil person. I don't think he's the smartest president we ever had, but I doubt if he thinks he is either. He's doing what he thinks is right even if a lot of people think he's wrong.

I actually know Democrats who felt terrible last week because the good news about the economy made President Bush look good.

And there are people taking satisfaction from the terrible news out of Iraq because that makes Bush look bad.

One of the best things about our democracy has always been that when we elect someone, that's it. The losers accept the results. We just barely elected George W. Bush, but whether we voted for him or not, we accept him as our president.

If people are really patriotic Americans and Democrats -- they bitch and complain but he's their president. They're more Americans than they are Democrats.

That's what was wrong with the election recall in California. Gray Davis was a lousy governor and Arnold Schwarzenegger seems surprisingly good, but the people elected Davis and should have stuck with him.

I'd like to conclude my remarks tonight by saying something to those of you who said you'd never watch 60 Minutes again.

Thanks for watching.

Written By Andy Rooney