I’m late seeing this, but we actually had some local parents stage a protest over President Obama’s national speech to students here in Edmond, Oklahoma, where I live, a couple of weeks ago before his speech. Given the response (over 180,000 views to date) and learning which has taken place around my daughter’s YouTube-posted response video, this is interesting as well as sad. This short video includes an interview with one of the protesting parents, who was concerned that our President would negatively influence children in our schools. (Unfortunately there is a short advertisement which will play first before the video clip.)
The picture of a young child in the video holding a sign her parent had doubtless created which read, “Don’t Brainwash Me,” is probably the most ironic image from this video. Who was brainwashing who?
See the past posts “Criteria for moderating comments on a viral video,” “YouTube comment moderation is great (and recommended) when videos go viral,” “Over 17,000 views on YouTube in 24 hours,” “Using Blogs and CoverItLive to Discuss President Obama’s Speech,” and “President Obama’s Speech to Students: A Great Opportunity for Synchronous, Live Discussions” for background on my experiences with Sarah related to the speech and her response.
We certainly weren’t among those parents protesting the speech outside the offices of the Edmond School Board.
edmond, obama, oklahoma, speech, president
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So President Kennedy, by extension, was also wrong and backwards to say, “Ask not what your county can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country.”?
This entire episode has been deeply troubling for me.
Most people have missed the point on this issue. My concern with any President directly addressing students, live, during class time is not a result of the speech (at least in this case). The problem here is federal involvement in schools. Our Constitution does not call for a federal dept of ed sending in suggested lesson plans and activities to schools in preparation for a speech to students. School districts are supposed to be locally and state run and influenced, not extensions of the federal gov’t or any of its offices.
The pure fact that the content of the lesson plans was changed after they were made publicly available shows you were the outrage should have been directed (and where my outrage was). The federal gov’t should not provide, nor suggest, any curriculum content, assignments, etc. Originally, students were going to be “held accountable” to their teachers for completing assignments based on the text of the President’s speech. Since when has the gov’t taken on this role?
No US President has spoken, live, directly to students during class time with accompanying lesson plans and activities (Pres Reagan spoke live after the Challenger explosion but only to schools with live TV feeds). What if Pres Obama wanted to do this monthly? What if Pres Bush wanted to address students, live, with suggested lesson plans? Are you telling me “the other side” would not have been up in arms?
PS: Pres Obama’s direction for this country is really “scary”. Who is going to pay for all his proposals? No one can answer that with a straight face.