Why parents reject the White House’s manipulative appeal to their children.
“Children should be educated and instructed in the principles of freedom.” –John Adams
Tuesday, Sept. 8, is the first day of classes in many schools across the Fruited Plain — and Barack Hussein Obama will use his presidential bully pulpit to interrupt the very start of classroom studies with an unprecedented nationwide speech to students, from pre-school to K-12. Schools technically have the option to show the broadcast from the White House Web site or on C-SPAN, but then again, the ratio of Democrats to Republicans in public education is at least 3-to-1, making forced viewing more likely.
Secretary of Education Arne Duncan wrote in a letter to school principals, “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.”
The truly troubling part of this episode of “Everybody Loves Barack” is that the Department of Education posted “helpful” lesson plans to be used before, during and after Obama’s speech.
One idea included in the initial lesson plan was for students to “write letters to themselves about what they can do to help the president.” Uproar ensued, however, and that was changed. Now students can “write letters to themselves about how they can achieve their short-term and long-term education goals.” Slightly altered, but students are still encouraged to discuss what “the president wants us to do.”
We have a different take for teachers. Back in October, when charged that he was a socialist, Obama explained what he meant by “shared responsibility,” saying, “I don’t know what’s next. By the end of the week [John McCain will] be accusing me of being a secret communist because … I shared, I, I, I, I shared my, uhh… I shared my peanut butter and jelly sandwich.” Of course, Obama wasn’t and isn’t proposing to share his sandwich. Instead, he promises to confiscate your sandwich and give it to someone else whom he deems more worthy.
At the same time, Obama said of McCain’s opposition to tax hikes, “You know I, I, I don’t know when, when, uh, when they decided they wanted to make a virtue out of selfishness.” This from the guy who, between 2000 and 2006, gave a whopping two percent of his income for charitable purposes.
So, if teachers break down Obama’s real philosophy, they will have plenty of fodder for truthful discussions of his nefarious plots against all things American, without his propaganda drivel. Then again, on “Obama Cult of Personality Day,” responsible parents may opt out of this “teachable moment” and just call their kids in sick.
Parents Get Out of the Way – We Want Your Children! Obama Infomercial Enlists Kids to “Help” Push Agenda
The ABC and NBC anchors on Thursday night framed stories, on the controversy over President Obama’s upcoming Tuesday address to the nations’ schoolchildren accompanied by a Department of Education recommendation that teachers have their students “write letters to themselves about what they can do to help the President,” through the prism of Obama as a victim of unfair presumptions.
“It seemed like a simple idea,” fill-in ABC anchor George Stephanopoulos sighed in offering the most benign description of how Obama’s “going to kick off the school year next week by speaking directly to America’s classrooms, the kind of pep talk to encourage kids to do their best.” But, Stephanopoulos noted, “the idea ran into a storm of protests. School districts across the country are fielding calls from angry parents. Some fear their kids will be forced to hear a partisan message.”
On NBC, Brian Williams declared Obama’s “message will be about the importance of working hard and staying in school” and though “Presidents have done this type of thing before,” those occurred, he rued, before “this hyper-partisan era of instant and vocal outrage immediately on both the right and the left.”
(“Hyper-partisan instant and vocal outrage immediately” sounds like a perfect description for much of what’s delivered by Williams’ NBC colleagues at MSNBC.)
In the subsequent reports, both ABC’s Jake Tapper and NBC’s Kevin Tibbles pointed out the controversy was fueled by a classroom guide that originally suggested pre-K through 6th grade teachers have their kids “write letters to themselves about what they can do to help the President,” but that was changed to recommending students “write letters to themselves about how they can achieve their short-term and long-term education goals.” (Screen shot is from the NBC Nightly News.)
PDF of the revised “Menu of Classroom Activities; President Obama’s Address to Students Across America (PreK-6)” from the Department of Education. The item in question is under “After the Speech.”
Story from the MRC’s CNSNews.com, “Revision: Education Dept. Changes Suggested Classroom Activities for Students Who Watch Obama’s Speech.” The Washington Times broke the story.
(Only Stephanopoulos on Thursday night mentioned the “finger” incident: “The fight over health care reform has gotten physical. If you thought the stories out of some of those town hall meetings couldn’t get any stranger, get this. At a demonstration in Thousand Oaks, California, one reform supporter bit off half the finger of a man standing with opponents. According to the victim, he was just passing by.”)
The CBS Evening News didn’t mention that event and also had nothing on the controversy over the speech to schoolchildren.
How the ABC and NBC anchors framed the speech to school kids stories on Thursday night, September 3:
George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s World News:
Brian Williams on the NBC Nightly News:
Unwillingness to Have Obama in Classroom Symptom of Why Schoolchildren ‘Are So Dumb Today,’ Says MSNBC Guest (Not as dumb as the guest)
Once again, one of the masters of the universe trotted out on MSNBC has discovered the cure to one of society’s ills – more Obama.
Daily Voice editor and CNBC contributor Keith Boykin waved off the reservations of some parents about President Barack Obama addressing their children in the classroom. Boykin appeared on MSNBC on Sept. 3 in a segment about the classroom controversy and added his insightful commentary on the matter.
“So much of the debate about President Obama has been politicized in an effort by some to delegitimize his presidency,” Boykin said. “This is clearly much ado about nothing. We’re talking about the President of the United States speaking to school kids. Why wouldn’t schools want this to happen? That’s why our kids are so dumb today, because they don’t want to have basic common sense in the classroom.”
But it’s not as if there isn’t a precedent for politicos to target schoolchildren to push a certain issue or agenda. As Creators Syndicate columnist Michelle Malkin pointed out in her Sept. 2 column, there are a number of instances where this has gone on in the past:
Boykin dismissed those accusations for the bizarre reason that that very few if any of these schoolchildren were able to vote.
“These kids don’t vote. I don’t understand why parents are concerned about health care related to kids hearing a speech from the President of the United States,” Boykin said. “They’re 17 years old. Some of them may be able to vote, but the idea the President of the United States is giving a speech to thousands and thousands, or millions of school kids from the potential of reaching a few 18 year olds doesn’t seem likely. I meant this is about basically encouraging kids to stay in school. It’s a worthy motive. The idea that anybody would be opposed to it is ultimately about politics and nothing else.”
Boykin might be correct – if there were an election tomorrow. However, there will be next presidential election in 2012 and there are 15-year-old school kids entering the ninth grade this year, that could potentially be eligible to vote in 2012 for Obama’s reelection bid.
Boykin also failed to realize that what troubled many parents was not the planned speech, but the classroom activities that the U.S. Education Department suggested teachers use in conjunction with it. The “suggestions” (which were developed with help from White House aides) included having children “write letters to themselves about what they can do to help the president,” and to discuss what “the president wants us to do.”
According to a Sept. 2 report from The Washington Times, the White House has revised some of the language in the video address, which was said to include a message to “help” the President.