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Opening Arguments

Gumming up the works

President Obama has been scolded -- again -- for chewing gum at a public event, this time the Republic Day parade in India:

However, this is not the first time that Obama has been spotted chewing gum during an important function. Though there was a lot of commentary on social media on his chewing gum at a formal ceremony. 

Comments on Twitter included remarks by author Shobhaa De, who said, "Barack bhai working his jaws overtime and chewing gum! At least it isn't gutka. But seriously - gum during a formal parade?". 

"Glad to see @BarackObama is so human. Like most Americans, he chews gum. Anyone know what brand?," was how noted film-maker Shekhar Kapur reacted.

Granted, such a pdjm (public display of jaw movement) has a certain, well, blue-collar crudity about it. But I'm inclined to cut Obama some slack if, as has been widely speculated, it's nicotine gum. If he's honetly trying to quit, I've been there, done that, and it is hell. If you've ever smoked, you know that those who say quitting is the hardest thing they've ever had to do are not exaggerating.