Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Teach the Children

Apparently President Obama is going to speak to the nations students next Tuesday (Sept. 8).
President Obama announced that on September 8 — the first day of school for many children across America — he will deliver a national address directly to students on the importance of education. The President will challenge students to work hard, set educational goals, and take responsibility for their learning. He will also call for a shared responsibility and commitment on the part of students, parents and educators to ensure that every child in every school receives the best education possible so they can compete in the global economy for good jobs and live rewarding and productive lives as American citizens.
Naturally this move has engendered suspicion from Conservatives who see this as the forming of a sort of Obama Youth movement. Michael Medved in his latest article takes this tack.
Imagine the reaction of one of these anti-Obama parents to a first grader who comes home proudly announcing that our whole class made promises about helping President Obama.
He also notes that had Bush tried this, many on the left would have slammed into him in exactly these terms. That's still sad; since I am not of a mindset to assume that everything Obama does is suspicious, the idea of the President speaking to students and telling them to, well, study and work hard seems OK to me.


Anonymous said...

If that was what the President intended for his speech to the schoolchildren it wouldn't have been objectionable to most. The problem is, the Whitehouse began a campaign of activities for the schools to assign to the kids to actually pledge support to policies that are partisan and counter to the beliefs of many parents. I would hope that someone who read enough to pick up Michael Medved's article would also have seen that it wasn't the fact that Obama was addressing the kids to "well, study and work hard" that was nearly as objectionable as the recruitment techniques that were intended to accompany his broadcast.

Bryant said...

I have read those materials, and I maintain that conservatives are reading more into them than is intended.

It is somewhat like any national security measures President Bush would enact during his tenure as President. There were plenty of people who saw even benign improvements in national security as sure indicators that President Bush was working to eliminate all of our civil liberties.

By the same token, many Conservatives seem convinced that Obama is hoping to set himself up as a socialist dictator; and thus even benign acts like this are evidence of his supposed messianic insanity.