LatinaLista — Since the dawn of education in this country, every school child has been taught to respect the President of the United States. For children, it’s not about politics but all about being the leader of this country.
Take during his presidential campaign, Barack Obama talked to students at Manchester Central High School in New Hampshire and answered questions about the Iraq war and ways to improve education.
(Photo Source: BRIAN SNYDER/REUTERS)
However, the extreme “partisanism” that has gripped this country since Obama’s election is now threatening the one enclave that was thought to be safe from what has evolved into passionate stupidity by critics of this administration.
The Dallas Morning News reports that Dallas-Fort Worth parents are threatening to pull their kids out of school on the day that President Obama is planning a nationwide speech to school children on the importance of education and why they should stay in school.
The unexpected outcry has left school administrators at a loss to rationalize an irrational response.
By midday, local school districts say, they were inundated with hundreds of phone calls from parents urging them to not show Obama’s speech at school.
Some parents threatened to keep their children home from school if the video was aired.
“We had no idea that there would be a public outcry,” said Laura Jobe, a Mesquite ISD spokeswoman. “It caught us by surprise.”
Cody Cunningham of the McKinney ISD said: “We rarely hear of parents pulling children out of history or government classes where they’re studying the politics or historical significance of a previous president.”
The reason given for not watching Obama talk about education?
Jim Greer, chairman of the Florida Republican Party, said Tuesday that the speech used taxpayer dollars “to spread President Obama’s socialist ideology.”
“Reasonable people can disagree” about Obama’s policies, Neal McCluskey, associate director of the Center for Educational Freedom at the conservative Cato Institute said. “But they don’t want their kids to be indoctrinated. This is potentially a tool of indoctrination.”
Hmmm. A tool of indoctrination to make kids see the importance of school and staying in it.
It sounds like what we’ve been wanting as a nation all along and all the more reason why objection to this speech is not just unfounded but so infected with this conservative irrationality that it’s plain stupid.
Needless to say, some of these hysterical parents have been successful in intimidating the North Texas school districts to alter their plans for showing Obama’s speech. Some will not show the speech but will put links to the video on their school website. Others will make watching the speech optional and only available in school libraries and others have yet to decide how to handle it.
Yet, it’s clear that this extreme partisanship that is trying to undermine the leadership of this country is gaining influence where it has no business.
Schools should be free to decide, without the threat of parental interference, to evaluate the message being conveyed to students.
Giving in to this extremism sends a bad message to our children that a vocal minority can dictate their ideology to a whole district, it is counter to what education stands for and it instills in these children a disrespect for the office of the President of the United States.
These are not the messages that our future generation needs as a foundation to build their own set of values and skills to form their own opinions.
Former President Bush has largely been silent since he left office but this is one time, as a President who valued education, he should step up and encourage people to see that a speech on the merits of doing well and staying in school is one that should be heard and deserves this nation’s support — especially if it’s delivered by our President.