Monday, September 7, 2009

Furor Over Obama Speech To Schoolchildren Is Epitome Of Right-Wing Lunacy

By Manifesto Joe

Reagan did it, in 1988. So did Bush I, in 1991. So, why is it controversial for President Barack Obama to address schoolchildren tomorrow about working hard to become good scholars?

Today the White House released a Web page with Obama's address. Here's the link.

Now, here's a video of President Ronald Reagan's address of Nov. 14, 1988. If this wasn't at least a generically political speech ... well, compare it with Obama's personal, rather than ideological, tone.

My first impression about the White House releasing Obama's speech a day early is that perhaps the intention was to embarrass the right-wing goons who have stirred so much feces about this. But you can't embarrass insane people.

And when insane people -- at least, the right-wing brand -- become vocal enough, authority figures listen. School districts around the country have been opting out of carrying Obama's speech in their classrooms.

Among these are a number in my home state of Texas. A bunch are in Tarrant County (Fort Worth, Arlington and suburbs), which, unlike neighboring Dallas County, was carried by McCain-Palin in 2008. Here's some of what the chairman of the Tarrant County Democratic Party, Steve Maxwell, had to say in a recent e-mail:

As you may have heard, President Obama is planning to deliver an address to the young people of our nation, on Tuesday, September 7. The message he will deliver is one of hope, of encouragement and of importance. President Obama is a shining example of what can be accomplished in this country by anyone willing to dedicate themselves getting an education, and has the willingness to pursue his or her dreams. This is the message he wants to deliver to the school children On Tuesday, the President will encourage students to care about their education, to apply themselves, to stay in school and to graduate. I believe this is a message our kids cannot hear enough.

There can be no more effective promoter of such a message than the President of the United States.

Unfortunately, some local radio hosts and Conservative activists have interpreted this as an attempt to indoctrinate students. Predictably, schools have received numerous complaints. As a result Arlington ISD, Aledo ISD, Mansfield ISD, Eagle -Mountain Saginaw ISD and Grapevine Colleyville ISD are all declining to show the speech live.

And then, there are those parents who have declared that they are simply going to keep their children home tomorrow so that they don't hear the simple story of an African-American who, against great odds, became a law professor, a U.S. senator and finally the leader of the "free world."

It's been said that it's often better to laugh at, rather than weep over, a sad and grotesque situation. So I'll leave you with a bit of morbid humor gleaned from YouTube:

Here's one of the comments this comedy video got:

Tell me something then, WHY does Obama need to address the CHILDREN?!? WHY??? Their own parents and teachers can't tell them to try hard and be good little communist fascists?  Hitler did the same fucking thing. Ever heard of the HJ? The Hitler Jugend or Hitler Youth.

That's coming next. Obama has already laid out his plans for MANDATORY civil service or community service. Either you are too stupid to see it or you approve of BIG BROTHER OBAMA telling our CHILDREN what to do and think.

Sigh ...

Manifesto Joe Is An Underground Writer Living In Texas.


SJ said...

This situation is just another case of Right wing establishment idealogues using the nation's (sadly still present) racist impulses to block anything this President does -and on the other hand, actual racists hiding behind partisanship to mask their blanket opposition to this administration's efforts.

What's next? -Federal buildings and school offices will refuse to hang his portrait on the wall? The FBI and CIA refusing to hang his portrait in their offices?

The GOP lost.
The president is Black.
These angry bat-shit lunatics don't want the President telling their kids to stay in school?
Tough shit.
McCain lost. Period.


Cranky Daze said...

Hi Joe,
I still have problems believing that there are people in this country that are so moronic as to have written some of the comments I've heard about tomorrows speech. One from a teacher who wants to see and hear the speech before she decides if it's fit for 8th graders to hear. She's talking about the president of the country, and this bimbo thinks she should censor what he has to say. If I had a child, and if this woman was his teacher, I'd be either picketing the school, or finding another school for my kid.

The idiocy involved in the reaction to having a black president is nothing less than mind boggling. On the other hand, we shouldn't be all that surprised. Look at the hate still directed at Bill Clinton.

Jack Jodell said...

Just another in a long line of ignorant and paranoid spasms from the current batch of knuckle-dragging far-right conservatives. They hate Obama because he's black and not just like them, and therefore they question and stonewall everything he does. These people belong in the Dark Ages. They are intolerant, anti-progress, and anti-intellectual. I call them the American Taliban.

Marc McDonald said...

I noticed this article from Think Progress:

"Texas school district that barred students from hearing Obama speech will bus them to Bush speech."

Brother Tim said...

Marc beat me to it. The Arlington ISD already had plans to bus 500 kids to a G W Bush speech when they cancelled Obama's speech.