Platitudes and Abstractions? Yes We Can!
President Obama will deliver his Indoctrination Speech™ to the nation’s schoolchildren today. His silver-tongued litany of subversive communist rhetoric is expected to completely annihilate the morals and values of American students. Complicit teachers trained in Saul Alinsky’s tactics will use Obama-approved socialist lesson plans to reinforce the president’s radical Marxist agenda.
I know those are the right wing talking points on the president’s planned address, but I’m having trouble raising my conservative ire to the expected levels. Here’s why:
1. The text of President Obama’s speech is innocuous. Released by the White House on Monday, it looks a lot like a commencement address, sans the humorous one-liners and witty anecdotes. And at 2,540 words, this painfully long speech is almost 10 times longer than the Gettysburg Address. Kids’ eyes will glaze over, their lids will grow heavy, and they will absorb nothing substantive from the president’s vapid string of platitudes and abstractions because it contains nothing substantive.
2. Varying degrees of indoctrination are rampant in American schools. If you’re thinking of keeping your kids out of the classroom today, you might as well keep them home everyday.
I attended public elementary school in New York City in the 1980s. My second grade class was taken around the corner from our school to the gates of the USSR Mission compound to protest the incarceration of Soviet dissident Natan Sharansky. This was done without parental permission.
In 1984, after Walter Mondale selected Geraldine Ferraro as his running mate, my teacher excitedly handed students items from campaign headquarters. My classmates and I spent the remainder of the year with Mondale/Ferraro bumper stickers affixed to our canvas loose leaf notebooks.
From what I gather, partisan bias and philosophical indoctrination are just as flagrant in today’s schools. That’s why conservatives are intuitively wary of a liberal president speaking directly to children. So yes, I guarantee that in some classrooms there will be bias evident in the exercises and lessons that follow President Obama’s speech. But I also assure you that there is informal indoctrination taking place in those classrooms all day, every day. Shielding your children from political bias in the classroom is a laudable goal, but unfortunately, keeping your kids home today is like fixing a leaky pipe with a roll of Bounty.
3. President Obama’s address to the nation’s schoolchildren is a distraction. Conservatives need to remain focused on the health care debate and the far more important speech the president will make to a joint session of Congress Wednesday night.
In the interest of moving on from this particular distraction, I propose that President Obama cancel his speech to kids and instead run the following video with the same message trimmed down to a succinct 30 seconds or so: