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Inflamed rhetoric

September 13, 2009

Re "Bipartisan praise for school speech," Sept. 9

Some parents didn't want their children to hear President Obama's back-to-school talk to students last week?

Apparently they must believe that parental influence is very weak. Otherwise, why would they think that a single talk could "indoctrinate" their children to believe what is contrary to the parents' beliefs?

Jim Goodenough

Canoga Park

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The Hysteria Alert has been raised to Code Silly.

Lock up your sons and daughters, dangle those tea bags from your earlobes and keep your sets tuned to Fox News for emergency instructions: Unbelievable as it sounds, the president of the United States is telling schoolchildren to play fair, work hard and stay in school.

Do not, we repeat, do not remain rational. Wait for our instructions, and we will tell you what next to fear.

Paul Tellstrom

Pasadena

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What has become of the idea that presenting a wide range of opinions to students ensures a well-rounded education?

What other curriculum topics will these parents decide their children should not learn?

It is an even greater shame that parents do not trust their kids enough to give them the freedom to learn, the opportunity to make their own decisions and choices, and the chance to develop their own opinions.

Terry Walker

Sylmar

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There is nothing wrong with Obama speaking to school kids.

He is merely advancing his version of the three Rs -- readin', 'ritin' and radicalism.

Edward Golden

Northridge

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Well, now that I've read Obama's speech to students, it's obvious why the Republicans did not want their kids to hear him.

The president's vital message of "work hard," "study hard" and "learn to read" are all designed to make kids socialists.

Must be why they do what they can to limit money to schools and do what they can to prevent public school to continue.

After all, an educated public is not going to fall for the distortions of Obama's plans.

Gary Coyne

South Pasadena

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Obama's speech to the kids of America taught us a few things about his alleged socialist agenda:

It teaches kids to go to school, whether they like it or not. It teaches them that they are responsible for themselves. It teaches them that they need to work for what they want, using knowledge and problem-solving skills.

It teaches them not to quit. It teaches them not to use bad circumstances as an excuse. It teaches them to make their futures their own.

It teaches them to get involved. It teaches them not to believe in the illusions of the media.

It teaches them that success is hard. It teaches them that it's OK to ask for help.

Ultimately, it challenges them to be productive Americans. If this is a socialist agenda, then hasn't the United States been socialist since 1776?

Bruce R. Stevenson

Newbury Park

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The media, as usual, are as much to blame as anyone, because they perpetuated the "controversial story," which, of course, turned out to be a noncontroversial nonstory.

The speech was nothing more than the concerned advice of an adult to children.

Mitch Russell

Valencia

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Thank God some Republicans were successful in keeping thousands of schoolchildren from hearing Obama's speech.

Otherwise, they might have been indoctrinated with the socialist concepts of staying in school, studying hard and fulfilling their dreams.

Maybe they can capitalize on their success and get schools to focus on creationism and guns instead of the dangerous concepts of English, mathematics and history.

God forbid our children should be smart enough to see though misinformation about things like Grandma getting unplugged by government-run healthcare.

Sadly, a once-rational party about business and defense has become the party of the ignorant.

Vince Scully

Long Beach

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The children who got to see this motivating talk by one of the country's great leaders are the lucky ones.

Their parents are not teaching their kids that politics comes before respect for the nation and the president.

I taught in public schools for 34 years. I cannot believe that any parent or school board would not have trusted the president, any president of the United States, to deliver a nonpolitical, stimulating and motivating talk to those of an impressionable age.

Stuart Lubin

Los Angeles

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Let me see if I've got this straight:

Parents make their children skip school in order to avoid having them hear a speech about the importance of staying in school.

This certainly puts the moron in oxymoron.

Kay Giles

Ventura

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