Whitewashing the Presidential Speech to Schools

By Jeff Schreiber & Rick Saunders
America’s Right

The real danger of Barack Obama’s speech to schoolchildren on September 8 did not lie in the speech itself, but rather in how the speech is received and how the agenda manifests itself in the classroom thanks to ideological teachers. With questions like “[w]hat is the president asking me to do?” and “[w]hat new ideas and actions is the President challenging me to think about?” and suggestions like “[have students] [w]rite letters to themselves about what they can do to help the president” it was extremely clear that the White House was less concerned with education and more concerned with indoctrination.

Now, however, it seems as though the Obama’s administration’s tendency to simply whitewash previously made statements now proving inconvenient is once again showing through, as the student worksheet accompanying the presidential speech has apparently been revised.

Here’s the old one (click to enlarge):


Here’s the new one (click to enlarge):


In the old version, perhaps the most daunting feature was the mechanism identifying how those letters from students–the ones in which they spelled out their goals to help the president–should be “collected and redistributed at an appropriate later date by the teacher to make students accountable to their goals.” Holding students accountable to everyday goals may be just fine, but goals with regard to how they can help Barack Obama further his agenda crosses the line. If a student needs assistance in identifying such an “approved” goal, might the teacher be enlisted to “help?”

If, for example, a goal of “helping the president” would be to sell $50 worth of lemonade for his campaign chest, and the student sold only $20 worth, would the need for accountability require that they be sent to a Kinder-gulag or junior marketing improvement seminar? Other suggestions in the old version of the directive included the posting of these “goals” around the classroom, graphing student “progress” toward the “goals,” and composing poems, songs or personal essays on the “goals.” Joseph Goebbels would have been ecstatic. And we’re pretty sure Van Jones would have been fairly pleased as well.

Gone may be the directives requiring students to set “goals” for helping the president and be held accountable to them, but there is still no reference in the slightest to the nation as a whole, and the danger has still not subsided. While the superficial traces of the White House’s hope to inculcate young students in the so-called “benefits” of “helping the president” instead of helping the nation may be better hidden, the section on “Extension of the Speech” still leaves students vulnerable to their teacher’s ideals, even more so than in normal everyday classwork.

Many Americans grew up watching presidential speeches in our Social Studies and History classes. But most of those Americans did not grow up with this president. This man has one talent–community organizing–and he’s not afraid to use it to herd your children like an overzealous border collie. America’s Right suggests that you keep your children home on September 8, regardless of what further changes are made to the directive accompanying the speech, and that you seriously consider keeping them home for good (through homeschooling, of course).

There are many good teachers out there, but there are many more who use their position at the Big Desk as a pulpit of sorts, a way to perpetuate the liberal agenda instilled so deeply inside them. When right-thinking Americans are once again able to obtain power in Washington, D.C., the time will come to foster a free-market approach to education, an approach that would bring the right kind of people into our schools in front of the blackboards, teachers concerned with teaching things like Mathematics, Writing, and History — the latter without an ideological tilt.

Until then, parents, be wary.

—————
Rick Saunders is a freelance writer who splits his time between endeavors in southern California and the American southwest. He began writing for America’s Right in December 2008. Jeff Schreiber established the Web site in January 2008.

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Comments

  1. Anonymous says:

    Newsbusters.com:

    …it has been revealed that Democrats complained in 1991 when then President George H. W. Bush broadcast a speech from a Northwest Washington junior high school.

    In fact, the House Majority leader at the time, Dick Gephardt (D-Mo.), said "The Department of Education should not be producing paid political advertising for the president, it should be helping us to produce smarter students."…

    http://newsbusters.org/blogs/noel-sheppard/2009/09/03/flashback-1991-gephardt-called-bushs-speech-students-paid-political-a

  2. Anonymous says:

    Can you imagine the outrage if Pres. Bush intruded into the classrooms with a webcast promoting support in Iraq, increased oil drilling, decreased taxes? Clinton presiding over a talk on sex education? Right or left, big government has no place in our classrooms. It is a slippery slope to the dark side.

  3. BACK TO WHAT REALLY MATTERS says:
  4. Anonymous says:

    Just another case of this administration saying "oops, that's not what we meant to say" and then audaciously changing their prior statement as if no one is going to remember. It's an incessant stream of trial balloons, to see just how far they can push their agenda before people freak out.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Watching a presidential speech on a general topic is quite different than having kids watch a speech tailored towards garnering personal loyalty towards an agenda! This administration has gone too far and must be taken to court to stop this brainwashing.
    Even more outrageous is this video that is being shown to school children:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wqcPA1ysSbw

    There is a man kissing himself as he says Barak Obama’s name! What kind of psychotic lunacy is this?

    We must sue the schools to prevent them from showing this trash to impressionable children!

    Don’t count on the ACLU to stop this religious indoctrination happening in the schools!

  6. Bodenzee says:

    I bet there'll be a quiz given to many students after Barry's missive is delivered.

    Those that parrot back his ideas get an "A." Students that are capable of critical thinking will get lesser grades.

  7. Holly says:

    I have 4 school aged grandchildren.
    I have spoken to their parents, expressing my concern as to what effect this Presidents speech may have on them.

    They will not be in school on Sept 8 and 2 will now be home schooled. The youngest will stay home. Ages 6 and 9.

    How dare this SOB try to take over our country through our children. It's bad enough that the adults didn't take heed before he got elected.

    It's time to clean house!!

  8. Anonymous says:

    "the time will come to foster a free-market approach to education,"

    Although I understand where the ideology comes, it sadly won't happen in our society.

    In today's world, very few even know the responsibility of parenting. The litmus of society lies in the education of the it's population. How would society be defined when the masses prefer working, day-care, and TV over rearing and sacrifice? What value and quality of educators can be expected when their salaries and benefits are less than jobs in the correctional careers?

    It's supply and demand, and society has defined demand as easy without responsibility.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Our school district decided not to show the speech; however, they also decided to record it and let teachers decide how to implement it in the classroom. They stated on their website that parents have the choice to opt-out, or remove their children from the class to another area. Okay…so now the children will be singled out amongst their peers?
    What an absolute bafoon this man is, aside from his agenda in the speech. He has caused absolute chaos with parents and school districts. Now there is an uproar, people arguing over it on blogs, schools put in ackward positions of decision, teachers having to hear from angry parents whichever decision they make, children being singled out, etc. Then you might consider that teenagers will start arguing over in the halls or classrooms. It's just an absolute mess! What an arrogant jerk.
    Personanlly, my child is not going to participate, but my child is also not going to be singled out and known to others as the child of someone who disagrees with Obama…or any politician…using our children as props and pushers of political agendas. What is this all about anyway? Are we pointing our children to the idea that the president is all-powerful? "How can I help the president?" It's not…."How can I help my country"?
    This is just creating more division amongst Americans. Just sick…

  10. Dee says:

    I lost all respect for most teachers a long time ago. My children have been out of school for many years. However, when my oldest son was in 1st grade I was the PTA President. Our district went on strike that year because the teachers were being asked to work an extra 15 minutes each day. Our PTA had several meetings with them and at one meeting, they complained how they only got paid 9months out of the year. I said that they were aware of that when they went into teaching and they only worked 9 months each year. I also explained that my husband, an accountant, worked many overtime hours and got no extra pay for it. The head of the teachers' union told me that my husband should get his priorities straight. She asked for my name and I would not tell her. I later saw her at a school board meeting and once again she asked for my name and I told her that she didn't need to know it. She then said, "What's the matter? You afraid we'll get your kid?" That's exactly what I was afraid of. My son experienced problems after that for many years. I only wonder if the teachers contributed to it.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Have them all compose a limerick which includes the tricky word fascism.

  12. Lilly says:

    Our principle did get back to me yesterday stating that they will not be airing this at our school. He understood my concerns and agreed. I was polite about the whole thing and explained that I didn't have a problem with a short video from the president stating; study hard, read, educations important etc. but did have a problem with an hour video and assignments for political reasons. I told him that I wouldn't censor my daughter but I would be there during the whole time if they did air it. (Teaching moments) Thankful to live in a small community, especially in IL!

  13. Anonymous says:

    Isn't there a minimum daily attendance percentage for a school to get its state funding for that day? If enough kids stay home on Baracktrination Day, would that cost schools? Not only would it symbolically show parents' displeasure with this planned address, but it would also show schools that if they allow this stuff to happen then it will cost them financially.

  14. Gail B says:

    Just say "NO" to propaganda and drugs!

    His 20-minute load of pelosi is going to be on the Internet, too, at one of his "dot gov" sites.

  15. Rix says:

    The district I live in happens to be rather conservative, and the teachers are stuck between the hammer of the slobbering-liberal union and the anvil of the conservative Board. I called my daughter school today and received an answer to the following tune: "The TV channel which is supposed to broadcast the speech is extected to be broken by 9/8. The recording will be available later to everyone who asks."

    PS: Hmm, the verification key is "sable". I thought it doesn't use dictionary words. Or is it hinting at something?

  16. Anonymous says:

    Maybe he will sit and read Larry's book to them. Obama, what a role model.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Yeah, or maybe he'll sit and read "Met Pet Goat" to the school kids while the nation is attacked to set an example.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Really? Have you seen our s chools lately. Most of our kids have little to no support from parents or adults for that matter. Teachers have to wear more than their teacher hat to help our children succeed. So now there is someone telling them to work hard and succeed. Boy what a crime! Have a little faith that teachers know how to handle the situation and guide our children through this speech. I bet most of you making comments are not teachers because it is usually those who don't know that are the first to criticize!

  19. Anonymous says:

    There are about twelve teachers in my circle and they all ooze global warming/climate change out of every pore of their body…. and we are supposed to think they can steer clear of Obama worship?

  20. Martin says:

    I firmly believe that no matter what the president says, it will be twisted into a political rant and rage for the supposed GOP members and their constituents to make hate with. Introspective commonsense speaks volumes for the root cause of each hateful comment made as of late. Non of the followers of the Right wing nut media personalities realize that they themselves are the victims of ill repute. I mind is a terrible thing to waste. It appears that on this blog there are many wasted.

  21. Starys says:

    What amazes me about all this is how concerned people are about what he might say. Not that I am saying we all don't have cause to be concerned, it's the fact that so many of us are wee-wee'd up that amazes me. Saying this administration rubs many of us the wrong way may be the understatement of the year.
    I think I read somewhere this speech is supposed to be an hour long. How can it possibly take an hour to give a pep talk about how important education is? My elementary school boys will be bored after about 10 minutes. How can he possibly go on for a full hour about how important education is? There simply has to be something more to this speech.

    I don't know yet if they are showing it in my district or not. I am guess they aren't just because I know how strictly they stick to their schedule. I will find out tomorrow and decide if my kids will watch or not. I am undecided.

  22. Scott says:

    I am both a teacher and a student. At 33 I have thrown myself back into collage. I also have the pleasure of helping my wife home-school our two children. I am glad that we do not have to worry and pine away over what the Pres. has up his sleeve for the kids at school.

    That said, I agree that this indoctrination of children to his political point of view is wrong. For that matter shame on any public teacher who falls for this manipulation of power. I do not think that the job of public school teachers is to raise our children. But, I do believe it is thier job to shelter the education process from political or intelectual corruption in their individual classrooms.

    Ironically, my son age 10 is an Obama supporter, and my brother a H.S. History and Econ. teacher is not.

  23. PSYDOG says:

    Thank God all my children are home schooled!!!!

  24. John says:

    man why would you bother with leaving your kids in this system. what a joke.

    I use to say to hell with parents who homeschool…but now I totttaly understand..good for them.

    What an OBAMA-NATION leaving your kids to hear this clutter. Revolution is just around teh corner guys and gals…

    Go over to http://www.forecastfortomorrow.com/news

  25. Anonymous says:

    John,

    I agree, but be careful in here with the word revolution… you're borderline to a spanking.

    verification word: rusky
    What ALL Obama's advisors are

  26. Craig says:

    I'll tell you what was political and that was Reagan's speech to kids. He specifically went into his political agenda. Right now conservatives are so far off the beam they wouldn't know a good thing if it hit them in the face.

  27. Anonymous says:

    Once again the mainstream media is trying to blow off the outrage over this blatant attempt to create personal loyalty to Obama among school children as partisan politics.

    During the election, Obama commercials were played every day on the school district’s closed circuit television that the children are forced to watch in homeroom.

    Obama posters were lining the hallways – no other candidates posters were on the walls.

    Now the district is promoting Obama by airing this hour long indoctrination speech, complete with directives to children to read about Obama and think all about him and how they can help him. The original wording of the materials revealed the true intent of this exercise, no amount of massaging can change that.

    Obama is a political child predator, plain and simple. I plan to initiate a law suit against my school district – parents can sue districts without a lawyer. I highly encourage all parents to investigate this option as well.

    Our children should be protected from every attempt to manipulate them for political gain from either party (particularly when the Teacher’s Union is in the pocket of a candidate).

    Use all means available to protect your children from the Predator in Chief!

  28. Chuck in San Diego says:

    Have not heard from my child's school administrator concerning Obama's speech on Tuesday. Since Monday is a holiday (there are literally only minutes left to exercise my rights as a parent), I am sending this my child's principal right now.
    ===================================
    Dear XXXXXXX,

    As a parent I am writing to you today to inquire what your guidance you are providing teachers at XXXXXXX School concerning President Obama's televised address for students on Tuesday September 8.

    Will you be deferring the choice of viewing this address to the individual classroom teachers; or, will you mandate that the address be presented in every classroom on campus?

    Will parents/guardians be given the option to opt out their child(ren) from viewing this address at school? How can parents directly contact their child(ren)’s teacher to ensure that their wishes are known since parent signed notes don’t always reach the teachers in a timely manner. And what foreseeable impact do you envision with follow-up classroom discussions concerning the President’s address if the child(ren)’s parents decided to opt out?

    While I support educating our children to respect both the office of the President and the value of community service, I still prefer to review the content of the President’s address before my child views it.

    Will you allow “equal time” for alternative views if the President’s address delves into topics or areas that might be interpreted as “political”?

    Also, were you aware that Federal law expressly forbids the Secretary of Education or any officer from exercising “any direction, supervision, or control over the curriculum, program of instruction, administration, or personnel of any educational institution, school, or school system.” 20 U.S.C. § 3403. Interpret this as you may.

    Thank you for your prompt attention and reply in this matter.

    Very respectfully,
    XXXXXXX

  29. Robert Wallace says:

    "Insanity is catching…"

    You're right.

    Sort of.

    Look, the idea of a president – any president – giving a speech to schoolchildren doesn't bother me. What – is he going to convert them all to raving liberals in the span of 15 minutes? Is 15 minutes of speech from President Obama going to outweigh an entire childhood of teaching from their parents?

    There's definitely a tinge of hysteria in the right-wing reaction. Pulling their kids out of school because they are afraid of ideological contamination makes about as much sense as getting them a shot for the cooties.

    On the other hand, I find it EQUALLY insane for members of the left to either:
    1. ignore the fact that the pre-speech memo was blatantly across the line
    2. play the race card

    As far as (1) goes, the instructions to have kids think about ways to "help the President" was out of line. Obviously. Help the country? Sure. Help their families? OK. Help their communities? Whatever.

    Help Barack Hussein Obama?

    Not their job.

    He's our civil servant, not the other way around, and in any case it's the OFFICE that matters, not the man inhabiting it.

    The race card?

    That's too pathetic to even deserve a response.

    Grow up.

  30. PlugandPlayEvents.com says:

    Insanity is catching… NO ONE said "boo" when Bush spoke to classes or graduating classes during his two terms as President, they CERTAINLY never caused this kind of an outpouring of blatant racism. You folks need to gather up your Glen Beck paranoia and focus it on something positive… like basket weaving. The Republican party is literally imploding. Why don't you guys go after Bobby Jindel for using 46 thousand in tax payer dollars to self promote himself and hand out stimulus money to churches in new orleans in the form of giant checks with his name on it.

  31. Anonymous says:

    I think this really shows that Hussien Obama isa low class individual.I can just see teachers instructing children to explain the benefits of socialized medicine to their parents to help Obama. How evil to use children against their parents in this manner to try to further his agenda. Reminds me of Hitler.

  32. Anonymous says:

    You right wingers are so hypocritical. We just lived through 8 years of you saying "if you don't support the president, then you aren't patriotic." Now, we have our president (your president) simply telling kids to study hard and set goals.

    It's funny how you believe your own conspiratorial lies, even when they contradict each other.

    You should be ashamed.

    Be a patriot. Support your president.

  33. Rix says:

    Anonymous@9:03PM:

    All other issues aside, he is technically not "my President". He is nothing but an usurper who squats in the White House on borrowed time granted to him by the radical-left congress and sycophantic media jackals.

    But heck, I'm most willing to support him. I'll even pay his U-Haul bill if he starts packing right now.

  34. Lisa says:

    I think that this has gotten out of hand, students should be able to listen to the President.

  35. Anonymous says:

    Sieg Heil… that's Kenyan, right?

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