Thursday, September 03, 2009

How dare he talk to our children?

Obama speech to students draws conservative ire, by Libby Quaid and Linda Stewart Ball, AP via Yahoo! News. Emphases mine.

President Barack Obama's back-to-school address next week was supposed to be a feel-good story for an administration battered over its health care agenda. Now Republican critics are calling it an effort to foist a political agenda on children, creating yet another confrontation with the White House.

Obama plans to speak directly to students Tuesday about the need to work hard and stay in school. His address will be shown live on the White House Web site and on C-SPAN at noon EDT, a time when classrooms across the country will be able to tune in.

Schools don't have to show it. But districts across the country have been inundated with phone calls from parents and are struggling to address the controversy that broke out after Education Secretary Arne Duncan sent a letter to principals urging schools to watch.

Districts in states including Texas, Illinois, Minnesota, Missouri, Virginia, Wisconsin have decided not to show the speech to students. Others are still thinking it over or are letting parents have their kids opt out.

Some conservatives, driven by radio pundits and bloggers, are urging schools and parents to boycott the address. They say Obama is using the opportunity to promote a political agenda and is overstepping the boundaries of federal involvement in schools.

"As far as I am concerned, this is not civics education — it gives the appearance of creating a cult of personality," said Oklahoma state Sen. Steve Russell. "This is something you'd expect to see in North Korea or in Saddam Hussein's Iraq."

That uppity so-and-so. He needs to know his place. Who does he think he is? The President of the United States?

Oh. Really? He is? Well, if you say so.

I would have loved if President Clinton had spoken to our class on television during the first day of school. Actually, I would have preferred Vice President Gore, because he was trying to save the environment. An address from Hillary Clinton would have been nice, too. What I'm saying is any excuse to watch TV during elementary school up through high school probably would have been appreciated by me and my classmates.



Chrissy said...

I know, I always loved it when you got to pay attention to a TV than the teacher!

BTW, love the pic!

Bianca Reagan said...

Thank you, Chrissy!

Stephanie said...

That is stupid. We watched President Bush get sworn in back in grade school (the first Bush). Yes.. I'm that old.. shut it! No one complained.

angryyoungwoman said...

George Bush the first gave an address to students in '91, and do you know what I remember about it? Nothing. I was clearly indoctrinated and brainwashed and I am now secretly serving the republican party.

canonball said...

Agreed. For some reason, when George Bush did this, it was okay.