Sunday, September 6, 2009

Obama school address debate is driven by mix of politics and racism and demagoguery

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Orland Park School District 135 is giving parents the option to remove their children from participating in a nationwide address that President Barack Obama will be making via the Internet and C-SPAN on Tuesday morning during class.

Obama wants to encourage children to "work hard, set educational goals, and take responsibility for their learning" The President will also call on students, parents and educators to work together to ensure "every child in every school receives the best education possible so they can compete in the global economy for good jobs and live rewarding and productive lives as American citizens."

Right wing fanatics, conservative extremists and the demagogue himself, former Vice President and war criminal Dick Cheney says that the President's goals represent "socialism," you know, the kind that we Americans fought against during World War II and the Cold War and throughout Europe.

Cheney and his ilk say that doing good in school is "socialism?" What a moron. he should be charged with war crimes. The U.S. Attorney's office is slowly winding its way through the criminal actions taken before and during the illegal invasion of Iraq -- which distracted this country from the real enemy in Afghanistan and is forcing our soldiers to face stepped up terrorist threats there today because Bush and Cheney didn't commit enough forces to that country eight years ago.

I remember when Republicans used to say we have to respect Bush whether we like him or not because he is the President of the United States. It's the office and when the president acts, we need to stand by him as a nation. We did that, of course, and over the past five years, we've seen more than 4,000 American soldiers come home in body bags with no real progress against the war on terrorism in Iraq.

Now, of course, the president is a Democrat and an African American, and we are told that he is a "socialist" because he wants to encourage school students to do better in school and to help others to do better.

My son will be listening to President Obama's speech Tuesday. Proudly. I feel sorry for those students who parents will remove their children and don't seem to like a president because a) he's a Democrat, b) because he is Black or c) he wants all students to do well in school. Tragic but symptomatic of the challenge that we face in America where racism, hatred and extremism lingers on from the Bush administration.

The idea was promoted by U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan, who was the Chicago Schools CEO before being appointed to the national post.

If you are interested, you can watch the speech live via the Internet at Tuesday Sept. 8 at 11 AM CENTRAL Time.

I know many children and students will be watching because many of their parents care about improving education for ALL children, regardless of race, color, religion or national origin.

Of course, the debate reminds us that not all share that benefit for our nation.

-- Ray Hanania

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