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You know, every so often you see something that totally takes you by surprise. Makes you laugh in joy, even.

Over on Facebook this morning there was such a thing. And it stunned me into silence at the sheer magnitude of it all. It referred to an article which was published yesterday, which I then read.

Unbelievable though it might seem, the National Park Service is actually going to modify the current four Presidents at Mt. Rushmore to include a fifth one … that of the current President. Barack Obama.

The modification to the monument is scheduled to begin in late 2015, with a target date of September, 2018 for completion.  The official announcement will be made Monday morning at the NPS’ Washington DC offices.”

Very Interesting.

Every word in the article drew me in more and more. The full text can be found here.

Before you make a judgement call, look at the picture here. This is one of several tentative renderings, vetted by sculptor Irving Gneus who is overseeing the project for the Park Service:

Each of the possible renderings include President Obama, most with him facing in the same direction as President Lincoln.

Even National Parks spokesman Michael Angelo stated he believed the inclusion of Obama on the statue would represent a symbolic healing of racial tensions, which need healing on so many levels in this country.

Naturally we expect some pushback from certain political quarters, however we believe that over time even staunch critics of the President will begin to adopt a more historical perspective as to the nature of his service.

Phil Stone from the New York Times’ interviewed Gneus for this week’s Sunday Magazine: “This is an American monument, not a Democratic or Republican monument.”

Unemployment will be somewhat affected positively, as the project is projected to involve several hundred miners and engineers and will utilize state of the art machinery.

Nevertheless, perhaps you consider this a bit premature … but according to the article it has been in the works since 2010. The modification to the monument is scheduled to begin in late 2015, with a target date of September, 2018 for completion.

Knowledge of this impending honor has spread among the Republicans although, since it is still a breaking story, comments are few at this time. When the subject was breached in 2011 on his radio show, Rush Limbaugh said:

If this becomes a reality I will personally strap a load of C5 to my stomach and lower myself down onto the Obama sculpture’s nose.

Everyone appears to have an opinion on this matter. Some opinions are more predictable than others. The project, which will be privately funded, has garnered a great deal of positive support.

Directly after word of the addition to Mt. Rushmore became verified, “Witnesses outside of Fox News’ headquarters on Sixth Avenue in Manhattan this morning reported hearing several muffled “explosions” or “pops” apparently emanating from behind the walls of the Fox studios.  Ambulances were dispatched to reports of oddly duplicative, catastrophic head injuries.”

Get It?