The Obama School Speech – Appropriate?
When I heard that Barack Obama was going to be speaking to America’s schoolchildren last Tuesday, like many other parents of public school students, I blew a gasket. It seems like Americans cannot avoid hearing or seeing this man wherever he goes. It already bothers the hell out of me that he has a radical homosexual (mature content) working in his Dept. of Education. It further disturbs me that his education secretary sought to establish a school for homosexual students when he (the education secretary) was in charge of Chicago’s schools (I moved to Indiana from Chicago). Now he was going to be up to something – obviously not going to deal with this issue but perhaps use the school children to prop up his failing Obamacare that significant majorities of Americans repudiate or address some other form of his political agenda.
What was even more troubling were the content that was distributed to teachers as laid out in the Dept. of Education’s (DOE) plans – here for Pre-K thru 6th grade and here for 7th thru 12th. On top of that, though I have no link source to back it up, rumor had it that Obama and Secretary Arne Duncan intended for these items to bypass school boards and go directly to the teachers. Speculation is that because school boards generally are the ones that give approval to the textbooks and other sources used in school classrooms and many school boards would not be approving of this material. However, I cannot officially confirm this as true, though it is believable.
But what is believable is that the speech that was given last Tuesday, which was relatively tame but nothing I couldn’t have said myself, was altered shortly before being aired because of the outrage across the country. Many parents prepared to opt their kids out for the day unless the school districts either decreed that they would not allow the Internet video to be shown or that parents could sit in on the video with their children. Many parents rescinded their intents after reading the content of the speech online. I read it myself but that stlil did not change my intent. My son stayed with his grandparents last Tuesday. It was the right decision. My son, though having learning difficulties, now knows that while the office of the president of the United States is worthy of the highest respect, the current occupant there, whose U.S. citizenship status is questionable, is not.
I find it already disgusting that Obama would even think to address our kids, given the connections he has had thru the years – Jeremiah Wright, Bill Ayers, Tony Rezko, Khalid Rashidi, Louis Farrakhan, “Father” Mike Pfleger, etc., let alone his dangerous agenda. One parent on an education blog said he didn’t want Obama within 10 feet of his child. But it wasn’t just Obama opponents that were outraged. Even liberals like this one found it “creepy” and a close friend of mine saw the similarities to Castro’s Cuba. I agree with both of them.
As a taxpayer in my son’s district, I was displeased to find out of the deafening silence that came from it. When I first heard that this speech was coming, which was on the Wednesday prior to, I e-mailed and faxed every high official in the school district as well as the principal of every school in this district and e-mailed the entire school board (no fax or other contact info was available for them) as to why the silence. I urged the district to do one of three things:
- Put a note for every student to take home regarding this event and advise them to follow the procedures in the school district’s handbook if they were uncomfortable with Obama speaking.
- Post a notice on the district’s website as well as on each school’s site as to the pending speech and the options parents have.
- Leave a message on each school’s “dial-a-home” recorder (they call every Friday afternoon with announcements from the school) so parents would be aware of what was coming.
Unfortunately, the school district ignored all my recommendations and other than an e-mail from the district’s superintendent advising me that Stevie (my son) could be excused during the speech, I heard from no one. This was a disservice to me and to the community, many of which were not aware of what was to come for whatever reason. The school district here is overall a pretty good one and very respective of parents. They succeeded in removing an offensive high school reading book last fall, thanks to one concerned parent. But their silence here was very disappointing.
Thank goodness Northwest Indiana’s number one paper, the Northwest Indiana Times, covered the story before and after and was for the most part fair and unbiased in its coverage. It’s too bad some parents found out about this speech this way rather than thru the school system.
I could say much more but I want to hear what you have to say, particularly if you have children in the public school system. Did your district notify you in advance of this speech? What was the overall reaction of school and district officials? Did they commit to air this video? If you opted out for the day or just the session, were you hassled in any way? Please share your experiences with me or feel free to make any other related comments to this event. If I have time, I’ll be glad to respond to your points or try to answer any questions you may have. I appreciate your visit!