September 08, 2009

Schoolhouse Crock

Remember Ronald Reagan's 11th Commandment - Republicans shall not speak ill of fellow Republicans? Well, after today, there's a new one added to the list.

The 12th Commandment:
Thou shalt not permit thy precious little school aged brats to behold the President of the United States, for he shall surely indoctrinate them in things not of Bibleism!

Well, I did it. Against Stew's wishes, I sat Claire down to watch President Obama indoctrinate school children this morning. Of course, after she realized she was about to watch Barack, the Radical Black Socialist instead of Clifford the Big Red Dog, she jumped off the couch to go play with her plastic golf clubs. I don't get what all the
hubbub was about, but I thought it was a good speech about working hard in school... doing your best, regardless of your personal circumstances, blah, blah, blah. Luckily, after the speech, I learned from some Teabagger invited onto MSNBC that it's not the text of the speech that's objectionable to racists, er, I mean "patriotic Americans", but it's more so the accompanying lesson plan that asks the students to write a letter to the president asking how they can help him. I guess it's sort of like how Stew had to write a letter to the Governor of SoDak when he was in 6th Grade, except nobody at the time seemed to care or sharted themselves over it. Or how Stew was forced to listen to Suzy M.'s auditor dad talk about the fascinating world of accounting on "Career Day" in the 8th Grade. Or how each year the Governor of SoDak has an Easter Egg Hunt on the lawn of the Governor's Mansion that's clearly designed to indoctrinate kids about the virtues of unregulated, free-market, capitalism (i.e., bigger kids stealing candy and Easter eggs from the weaker kids). Anyway, according to the Teabagger on MSNBC, the Obama lesson plan is specifically designed to influence kids' thoughts, behaviors and personalities. Of course. It's obvious.

It's true. As a kid, Stew's mother forced him to write "thank you" letters to his relatives following each birthday and Christmas. This act obviously influenced his behavior because to this day, he consistently fails to write "thank you" letters anymore. In fact, he despises having to write them almost as much as he hates having to shave or bathe and, if he actually does send a "thank you"
letter, it's typically six months late. So I submit all this Obama lesson plan is going to do is anger kids by giving them more homework, thereby creating even more future Conservatives after the kids learn to: 1) blame people of color for all the problems in the country (including today's additional homework), and 2) instill an even greater sense of entitlement in the students, particularly those from more well-off families who are accustomed to having things done for them. I'm fairly confident kids from teabagging households won't be very inspired by Obama's words today after they've likely had "socialism" lessons shoved down their throats by their (rational?) parents for the past six months. So my advice to the haters out there is to follow the advice of Jon Stewart and "...pace your rage!"

Can you imagine if Obama's speech contained "propaganda" over what the tax code should be, or the role of government and the idea that students should study moral precepts alongside science and English? That's
freakin' crazy talk, right? Oh, wait... that's exactly what Ronald Reagan did in November 1988. Which is the equivalent of hearing Obama justifying the Stimulus Package in today's speech by citing Roosevelt's New Deal as an example of how Americans have historically made a commitment to investing in their country's future. But he didn't do that. A missed opportunity to indoctrinate the kids. No, instead he just told the kids to stay in school... try your best... don't give up... and take responsibility for your own destiny. What a radical, elitist, commie message we should all fear!

The difference between Reagan's speech more than 20 years ago and Obama's speech today is that Reagan told kids what he believed about American government and Obama galvanized them to work harder. In all likelihood, neither of them were written with the purpose of indoctrination. But only one of them truly inspired.


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Commentary from a stay-at-home dad on daily happenings and misadventures while helping raise a wonderful little girl. The goal is to employ wit, sarcasm and/or humor to make the blog pseudo-entertaining. Then again, setting goals never really worked for me, but maybe you'll chuckle anyway.

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