Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Education indoctrination: Obama speaks to the children

By Michael J.W. Stickings

Here's the address Obama is set to make later today to America's schoolchildren. Read it. I defy anyone to find any possible line of indoctrination. There isn't even a semblance of a political agenda in there, let alone the sort of nefarious plot that the president's critics have been alleging.

In fact, the address is actually hyper-American, the sort of up-with-America rhetoric that makes much of the rest of the world laugh off as typical American self-aggrandizement, that makes many of us non-Americans shake our heads in bemused disbelief. Consider, for example:

Where you are right now doesn't have to determine where you'll end up. No one's written your destiny for you. Here in America, you write your own destiny. You make your own future.

That's what young people like you are doing every day, all across America.


*****

The story of America isn't about people who quit when things got tough. It's about people who kept going, who tried harder, who loved their country too much to do anything less than their best.

It's the story of students who sat where you sit 250 years ago, and went on to wage a revolution and found this nation. Students who sat where you sit 75 years ago who overcame a Depression and won a world war; who fought for civil rights and put a man on the moon. Students who sat where you sit 20 years ago who founded Google, Twitter and Facebook and changed the way we communicate with each other.

So today, I want to ask you, what's your contribution going to be? What problems are you going to solve? What discoveries will you make? What will a president who comes here in twenty or fifty or one hundred years say about what all of you did for this country?

There's nothing really wrong with any of that. Sure, America's "story" is actually quite a bit more nuanced, and dark, than that, but young Americans need to believe in the possibility of America, in the promise and the ideal, and in the possibility of what they themselves can accomplish if only they put their minds to it.

And so what are the values being expressed here? Self-reliance, hard work, individual initiative, creativity, and the common good. What's wrong with that? What do Obama's right-wing critics have against that?

Even with respect to education policy, all Obama will say is that he has talked about responsibility, another key value: the responsibility of teachers, parents, and government? Do Obama's right-wing critics suddenly object to the very notion of responsibility, individual or otherwise? Do they object to "dedicated teachers" and "supportive parents"? Do they object to "high standards" and "turning around schools."

Well, sure, many of them -- and this is now common among conservatives -- object to pretty much anything and everything government does, and especially if the the government is run by Democrats (they're far less concerned when Republicans run things, hence their rolling over for Bush, hence their hypocrisy), but, in situating themselves against a profound statement of American values like this address, all they've done is exposed their own partisan priorities, not to mention their personal and ideological insanity.

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5 Comments:

  • Now the problem is that he uses the word "I" too many times. This shows that he is a megalomaniac, the first trait of tyrants.

    The real problem is that they hate that he's not white, but bringing that up is as taboo as breaking the first rule of Fight Club.

    By Blogger Matty Boy, at 9:42 AM  

  • SUGGESTION TO THE RIGHT WING:

    Just sit back and relax, folks. Barack Obama is only performing a routine presidential duty that has been performed by presidents for generations. There's nothing to be afraid of. He's not trying to turn your babies into mini Marxists. This isn't the Trotsky For Toddlers program. The president of the United States merely wants to have a heart to heart talk with the children of America about the importance of a good education, that's all. I promise you, we Progressives do not believe in evil, subliminal messages. Chill out!

    STNERAP RUOY LLIK - NERDLIHC

    Just kidding.

    http://www.tomdegan.blogspot.com

    Tom Degan
    Goshen, NY

    By Blogger Tom Degan's Daily Rant, at 9:56 AM  

  • I found your blog on google and read a few of your other posts. I just added you to my Google News Reader. Keep up the good work. Look forward to reading more from you in the future.バストアップ法

    By Blogger jony, at 6:04 PM  

  • This article is a simple example of the president performing its duty and making the citizens aware of the importance of education and what all they can contribute to their nation. If they believe in themselves, in their work rather than believing in destiny.

    Pass-Guaranteed Scam

    Thanks,

    By Blogger Mark, at 5:16 AM  

  • One thing Huckabee is not is original. He usually seems to be spewing some right-wing nonsense that he's thoughtlessly digested and adopted as his own. TQチャート 生活の知恵袋

    By Blogger jony, at 12:21 AM  

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