Obama’s next effort: a Children’s Crusade?

posted at 2:21 pm on September 1, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Drudge featured the breaking news story that Barack Obama would hold a nationwide speech for elementary-school children a week from today, touching off a flurry of e-mails wondering what Obama had in mind.  Will this be just an opportunity to learn more about government?  Or will Obama try pitching ObamaCare to the Sesame Street set?

The teaching guidelines don’t really give much of a hint:

President Obama’s Address to Students Across America September 8, 2009

One does leap out: “Write letters to themselves about what they can do to help the President.” Is that an elective or a prerequisite for mathematics?

Presidents often visit classrooms and talk to students. It usually makes a good photo op to put the President with children who obviously enjoy the attention, and there’s no harm in it. It can be a good teaching moment for civics instruction, which this nation does poorly at delivering. The timing can even be explained as the first week in which all children will return to school, and since for many of them it will be their first day, it won’t interrupt their normal curriculum.

Still, the nationwide speech aspect of this is unprecedented, and a little odd. Coming as it does on the heels of a disastrous summer, it’s not surprising that people are suspicious, including the boss:

Will Obama be able to resist issuing a call to youth arms to marshal help in passing his legislative agenda?

The thing is: He won’t need to make the call explicit.

Obama zealot teachers like this one across the country will do all the extra-curricular bullying and haranguing for him.

They probably don’t need Obama pushing them to do that, anyway, although it will certainly give them more energy to do so.

If Obama sticks to education and personal achievement in his speech, there should be no controversy. Parents should prepare their children for the difference between political speeches and actual facts in any case, which will be a most useful education regardless of what Obama has to say in his speech.

Update: One of the first bloggers I ever read regularly, Venomous Kate from Electric Venom, says she’s sending her child to school instead of using a protest absence — and the coolness factor is one of the reasons. Be sure to read her take, and catch the implied lesson of parental involvement.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Comment pages: 1 2 3 7

The historical Children’s Crusade ended up with the unlucky child-soldiers being sold into slavery, IIRC.

Obama’s already done so financially by triple-mortgaging their future with massive borrowing.

teke184 on September 1, 2009 at 2:23 PM

I’d like to see the transcript about a week ahead of time so parents can decide if their comfortable with the message.

BadgerHawk on September 1, 2009 at 2:23 PM

Jeeze, all this worrying?

Lighten up, is my advice.

I swear, the candidate who uses a light touch is going to win everything.

AnninCA on September 1, 2009 at 2:23 PM

Massive gay-out Obama-out day!!! Keep your kids home!

SouthernGent on September 1, 2009 at 2:23 PM

Would Obama politicize a speech to children? My question would be “Why not? He has politicized everything else.” I mean, when his people are astroturfing churches, where are the lines now?

We’ll see, but be prepared for the worse.

AUINSC on September 1, 2009 at 2:24 PM

SIEG HEIL

SIEG HEIL

SIEG HEIL

angryed on September 1, 2009 at 2:24 PM

Looks like I got out of the high school just in time.

Emily M. on September 1, 2009 at 2:25 PM

Oh wait, it’s only elementary kids? When I read this on another site today, they made it sound like it was for all grades.

Emily M. on September 1, 2009 at 2:25 PM

At least he’ll be talking to his intellectual equals.

Doughboy on September 1, 2009 at 2:25 PM

“Cadre Kids, don’t forget…October is bonus recruitment month. Earn a double bonus for reporting a family member!”

-The Running Man

James on September 1, 2009 at 2:25 PM

One does leap out: “Write letters to themselves about what they can do to help the President.” Is that an elective or a prerequisite for mathematics?

Yeah, kind of does stick out, doesn’t it. Takes away the choice making process that builds independent thinking in growing young minds.

Of course, smart alert kids might suggest: “I want President Obama to read the Constitution and what its Framers wrote so he can get his mind right.”

klickink.wordpress.com on September 1, 2009 at 2:26 PM

Or will Obama try pitching ObamaCare to the Sesame Street set?

This propaganda brought to you by the letter “O” and the number 3 Trillion.

I’m sure all he’s going to do is encourage for the kids to turn in their parents for heresy against the state by going to a particular web site so that somebody can contact them and clear up the misinformation they might have been hearing.

highhopes on September 1, 2009 at 2:26 PM

Massive gay-out Obama-out day!!! Keep your kids home!

SouthernGent on September 1, 2009 at 2:23 PM

I’m keeping my kids home. They’ll enjoy that. ;)

Daggett on September 1, 2009 at 2:26 PM

Looks like I got out of the high school just in time.

Emily M. on September 1, 2009 at 2:25 PM

I thought you were like 16.

BadgerHawk on September 1, 2009 at 2:27 PM

Oh wait, it’s only elementary kids? When I read this on another site today, they made it sound like it was for all grades.

Emily M. on September 1, 2009 at 2:25 PM

I’m not taking any chances. Teachers love to turn on a TV and take a break.

Daggett on September 1, 2009 at 2:27 PM

Stay away from my kids.

Alden Pyle on September 1, 2009 at 2:27 PM

Obama has to be channeling Adolf.

Scary stuff going on.

fogw on September 1, 2009 at 2:27 PM

Mommie, the nice man on TV said that if we don’t pass health care, Johnie’s dad is going to die. Please, mommie, pass health care. Wahhhh wahhhh wahhhh. I want Johnie’s dad to live.

angryed on September 1, 2009 at 2:27 PM

Operant conditioning…. writ large.

he’s not convincing any more voters now, so why not convince them before they become voters. Not a surprising tack, but that’s gov’t schools for you. They function to do the will of the state, not the parents.

ted c on September 1, 2009 at 2:27 PM

Since our public schools are doing such a fantastic job “educating” our children and since our test scores and graduation rates are at all-time highs, I can see why taking time out of the day for a campaign commercial is a good idea.

Oh wait, our test scores are in the toilet, our graduation rates are embarassing, our expenditures per pupil are at historic highs and we have the worst K-12 education of any industrialized nation?

Maybe we need public school education reform. Because this is yet another government program that’s crapping the bed.

NoDonkey on September 1, 2009 at 2:28 PM

david hedrick said, “STAY AWAY FROM MY KIDS”

I’m so glad we homeschool!

ted c on September 1, 2009 at 2:28 PM

This can’t be good. Everyone knows he is a socialist and his goal is to change America forever. He wants to soft sell himself to the kids and get inside their heads with his crap. Keep your kids home from school that day.

cjs1943 on September 1, 2009 at 2:28 PM

I would LOVE to see him pitch ObamaCare, but he can not be that stupid. I predict very anti-climactic be-all-you-can-be babble. Everyone watch frame by frame though and look for those one/100th of a second freeze frame of Obama as a Jonas Brother or some nonsense subliminal message.

Marcus on September 1, 2009 at 2:28 PM

Suffer little children to come unto him, and watcheth his head shifting left to right, and heareth of strawmen.

Ted Torgerson on September 1, 2009 at 2:28 PM

Here’s a suggestion: Alert all your friends that are parents and have them keep their kids from school that day and stand outside protesting.

An effective form of community organizing that The One can truly appreciate.

klickink.wordpress.com on September 1, 2009 at 2:28 PM

My Pet Pork?

LOL
excellent

cmsinaz on September 1, 2009 at 2:28 PM

OMG.

Alana on September 1, 2009 at 2:28 PM

Maybe they’ll all be issued their little brown shirts on that day.

Planned sick day – I see it coming.

ChalkPerson on September 1, 2009 at 2:29 PM

I thought you were like 16.

BadgerHawk on September 1, 2009 at 2:27 PM

Was the “like” necessary? I am 16. I’m taking some of my classes online, and the rest at the college.

Emily M. on September 1, 2009 at 2:29 PM

Marcus on September 1, 2009 at 2:28 PM

+ 1 LOLZ

angryed on September 1, 2009 at 2:29 PM

More liberal indoctrination. This will not end until the NEA and public education is destroyed.

docdave on September 1, 2009 at 2:29 PM

I would LOVE to see him pitch ObamaCare, but he can not be that stupid.

Marcus on September 1, 2009 at 2:28 PM

And you base that assumption on what?

I’ll take five dollars of that action!

klickink.wordpress.com on September 1, 2009 at 2:29 PM

The Obies don’t want their kids being involved in politics and publicity.

Why not leave other children alone? Double standards, again.

Cody1991 on September 1, 2009 at 2:30 PM

SIEG HEIL

angryed on September 1, 2009 at 2:24 PM

Nah, it’s more like this….

misslizzi on September 1, 2009 at 2:30 PM

Marcus on September 1, 2009 at 2:28 PM

would not surprise me if he did….not in the least

cmsinaz on September 1, 2009 at 2:31 PM

If I read my kids right, they will be in the principal’s office for having thrown their shoes at the screen.

Wasn’t Bush in a classroom on 9/11? Hmmmmm.

Kafir on September 1, 2009 at 2:31 PM

What a pity! Due to school renovations, our local schools don’t start until the 14th.Dept. of Education (thank-you Jimmy Carter!): Reason 901 why you should homeschool.

Beaglemom on September 1, 2009 at 2:31 PM

I think he’ll talk about service. He wants it to be mandatory for all kids right? Personally, I want to know what will happen to me if I refuse.

Emily M. on September 1, 2009 at 2:31 PM

another in a long illustrious line of “teachable moments”

PatriotRider on September 1, 2009 at 2:31 PM

He can tout the successes of the “public option” in education that he does not use for his own children, even before being elected President.

rw on September 1, 2009 at 2:31 PM

Jeeze, all this worrying?

Lighten up, is my advice.

I swear, the candidate who uses a light touch is going to win everything.

AnninCA on September 1, 2009 at 2:23 PM

Fu*king moron. We’re worried our kids would turn into you.

JiangxiDad on September 1, 2009 at 2:31 PM

SIEG HEIL

SIEG HEIL

SIEG HEIL

angryed on September 1, 2009 at 2:24 PM

No, This has more of the USSR’s Young Pioneers feel to it than it does Hitler Youth.

highhopes on September 1, 2009 at 2:32 PM

Cody1991 on September 1, 2009 at 2:30 PM

don’t be surprise if they have a photo op of the O kids during his speech

cmsinaz on September 1, 2009 at 2:32 PM

My 7grade-schooler will have swine flu that day…

jbtripp on September 1, 2009 at 2:32 PM

Was the “like” necessary? I am 16. I’m taking some of my classes online, and the rest at the college.

Emily M. on September 1, 2009 at 2:29 PM

I couldn’t remember if it was 15 or 16, hence the “like”. 16, rational and smart. You owe your parents a beer.

BadgerHawk on September 1, 2009 at 2:32 PM

If I had children in school I would keep them home that day. I do have Grand kids in First grade and Kindergarten. I’m going to tell my daughter about this. She is conservative and would certainly find this disturbing.The kids are already policing her recycling. Drives her crazy.

sandee on September 1, 2009 at 2:32 PM

Massive gay-out Obama-out day!!! Keep your kids home!

SouthernGent on September 1, 2009 at 2:23 PM

Amen to that – get the word out.

Vashta.Nerada on September 1, 2009 at 2:32 PM

Cowards always prey on the weak and take advantage of the innocent.

Barry is the poster boy.

fogw on September 1, 2009 at 2:33 PM

So Castro-like to talk to the kiddies.
Parents, be on guard.

cubachi on September 1, 2009 at 2:33 PM

Oh wait, it’s only elementary kids? When I read this on another site today, they made it sound like it was for all grades.

Emily M. on September 1, 2009 at 2:25 PM

It’s best to indoctrinate them young.

baldilocks on September 1, 2009 at 2:33 PM

What would you tell the students?

I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than those attending too small a degree of it.

– Jefferson

WashJeff on September 1, 2009 at 2:34 PM

If you know me and my postings here, you know I don’t particularly care for President Obama and his policies; however, I am going to give him the benefit of the doubt on this one (I’m sure he’s thrilled) for now.

This could be kind of cool as long as he sticks to positive messages about the importance of education, etc. If he veers off course into political minefields, the effort will blow up in his face.

D2Boston on September 1, 2009 at 2:34 PM

Obama: National Parent.

lorien1973 on September 1, 2009 at 2:34 PM

Cody1991 on September 1, 2009 at 2:30 PM

don’t be surprise if they have a photo op of the O kids during his speech

cmsinaz on September 1, 2009 at 2:32 PM

Yeah, I can see it. “We’re the president’s children, and WE go to private school. Neener, neener, neener!”

Cody1991 on September 1, 2009 at 2:34 PM

What will you guys say when it turns out to be nothing more than a basic civics deal?

Which, surely you realize, it will be just that.

Michelle is stirring the pot.

AnninCA on September 1, 2009 at 2:34 PM

“Hey Kiddies, you know those little pieces of green paper in Mommy and Daddy’s wallet ?? Please grab as much as you can and send them to me, OK ??”

Jerome Horwitz on September 1, 2009 at 2:34 PM

Y’know what would be nice?

If Obama would give a speech and interact with the adults who elected him…

Talking to one school class or school is good PR.

Talking to all of them at once is a call to arms.

Skywise on September 1, 2009 at 2:34 PM

This brings back fond memories of being sent to the dean’s office for disagreeing with my teacher that the soviets were better than us, or that we needed to unilaterally disarm. Those were the days.

Vashta.Nerada on September 1, 2009 at 2:34 PM

He’s going to instruct the children, as done earlier for the census, to take a message to their parents, to tell their parents that they are bad people if they don’t support his nationalizations.

After that, he’ll arrange a mechanism for children to give him feedback on how well their parents are following his directives.

petefrt on September 1, 2009 at 2:35 PM

AnnInCa,

Why

Do

You

Type

This

Way?

It

is

fu***ng

annoying.

angryed on September 1, 2009 at 2:35 PM

If you know me and my postings here, you know I don’t particularly care for President Obama and his policies; however, I am going to give him the benefit of the doubt on this one (I’m sure he’s thrilled) for now.

This could be kind of cool as long as he sticks to positive messages about the importance of education, etc. If he veers off course into political minefields, the effort will blow up in his face.

It’s not going to be another Gates remark that sets off a firestorm, for sure. *haha

He’s not that stupid.

AnninCA on September 1, 2009 at 2:35 PM

It is a teaching moment for those who will pay for the Obama Administration’s debacles. Obama Youth Brigade…

d1carter on September 1, 2009 at 2:35 PM

Well, the good thing is if when {he won’t be able to resist the urge} he politicizes it he and the Dems will probably lose another few hundred thousand more voters.

He’s only just beginning, its going to get a lot worse in the next three years.

johnsteele on September 1, 2009 at 2:35 PM

Fu*king moron. We’re worried our kids would turn into you.

JiangxiDad on September 1, 2009 at 2:31 PM

Amen to that!

thomasaur on September 1, 2009 at 2:35 PM

Well I can guarantee you both my kids will BOOOOOO him.

anniekc on September 1, 2009 at 2:35 PM

I think he’ll talk about service. He wants it to be mandatory for all kids right? Personally, I want to know what will happen to me if I refuse.

Emily M. on September 1, 2009 at 2:31 PM

Refuse? Why would anyone want to refuse to volunteer. Unless you aren’t in your right mind. In which case ObamaCare will provide a nice rest and some medicine at a soon to be depopulated Caribbean resort . . .

rbj on September 1, 2009 at 2:35 PM

Y’know what would be nice?

If Obama would give a speech and interact with the adults who elected him…

Skywise on September 1, 2009 at 2:34 PM


interact
being the key word….

misslizzi on September 1, 2009 at 2:36 PM

What will you guys say when it turns out to be nothing more than a basic civics deal?

Which, surely you realize, it will be just that.

Michelle is stirring the pot.

AnninCA on September 1, 2009 at 2:34 PM

Of course it will be a “basic” civics deal. It’s obviously a giant speech about how you can better serve the government of Obama.

Skywise on September 1, 2009 at 2:36 PM

One does leap out: “Write letters to themselves about what they can do to help the President.” Is that an elective or a prerequisite for mathematics?

This should be an interesting year for my first grader. After kindergarten we had to undo the brainwashing, she came home telling us 0bama was going to give everyone money (she likes money!) , my husband explained to her that 0bama was going to take our money and give it away. She didn’t like that, now she goes around saying she doesn’t want 0bama to take her money! Like I said, this ought to be an interesting school year. And yea, what the f*ck happened to reading, writing and arithmetic???!

4shoes on September 1, 2009 at 2:36 PM

If you know me and my postings here, you know I don’t particularly care for President Obama and his policies; however, I am going to give him the benefit of the doubt on this one (I’m sure he’s thrilled) for now.

This could be kind of cool as long as he sticks to positive messages about the importance of education, etc. If he veers off course into political minefields, the effort will blow up in his face.

D2Boston on September 1, 2009 at 2:34 PM

He won’t be able to resist the urge.

johnsteele on September 1, 2009 at 2:36 PM

BadgerHawk on September 1, 2009 at 2:32 PM

My mom doesn’t drink, but she’ll glady accept compliments.

Emily M. on September 1, 2009 at 2:36 PM

I sent this info to my sister. I really hope she keeps my nephew out of school that day.

I hate this man.

jennifernaz on September 1, 2009 at 2:36 PM

Talking to all of them at once is a call to arms.

Skywise on September 1, 2009 at 2:34 PM

Obama, keep your hands off our healthcare, and keep your hands off our children.

petefrt on September 1, 2009 at 2:36 PM

I just sent out a link to this story to people in my email address book. Got to get the word out.

cjs1943 on September 1, 2009 at 2:37 PM

The Obama Jugend will be on the march….

It’s tempting to be snarky about the latest indoctrination attempt by the Child-President, but when you look at everything he has done or professed to support (ACORN, the Civilian Defense Corps, and so on, ad nauseum) the potential for him to do lasting damage is chilling.

If he keeps pecking away at the nation and its Constitution long enough, and patriots confine themselves to saying “oh, he’ll never make that one work” and “wait until 2010…we’ll show him!”

I worry that we will be in the same position as citizens of certain countries in the second and fourth decades of the 20th Century. They believed their lands were immune from totalitarian thugs, too….

MrScribbler on September 1, 2009 at 2:37 PM

LEAVE OUR KIDS ALONE

stenwin77 on September 1, 2009 at 2:37 PM

What will you guys say when it turns out to be nothing more than a basic civics deal?

Which, surely you realize, it will be just that.

Michelle is stirring the pot. planting the seed.

tatersalad on September 1, 2009 at 2:37 PM

AnninCA on September 1, 2009 at 2:34 PM

Yeah. President is going to give a speech on basic civics to everyone. Makes sense. Snort some more kool aid, would ya?

lorien1973 on September 1, 2009 at 2:37 PM

LEAVE OUR KIDS ALONE …you socialist, communist PIG !

stenwin77 on September 1, 2009 at 2:37 PM

He’s not that stupid.

AnninCA on September 1, 2009 at 2:35 PM

So long as he reads from the teleprompter.

Skywise on September 1, 2009 at 2:37 PM

I have no fears unless they outlaw homeschooling. (Which is a legit fear.) With that said,

KEEP MARXISTS AWAY FROM MY KIDS’ PEERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Mommypundit on September 1, 2009 at 2:37 PM

What will you guys say when it turns out to be nothing more than a basic civics deal?

Which, surely you realize, it will be just that.

Michelle is stirring the pot.

AnninCA on September 1, 2009 at 2:34 PM

Can we each have a turn using your crystal ball?

fogw on September 1, 2009 at 2:38 PM

What will you guys say when it turns out to be nothing more than a basic civics deal?

Which, surely you realize, it will be just that.

Too bad, the kids probably know more about the Constitution and civics than he does….

PatriotRider on September 1, 2009 at 2:38 PM

Thankfully, we home school. :)

RedNewEnglander on September 1, 2009 at 2:38 PM

Oh God, nobody tell Glenn Beck. This is the last thing he needs.
—————————————————-
Student: But I do not want to help the president because I do not support his agenda.
Teacher: Are you saying you WANT THE PRESIDENT TO FAIL!?!?!?!

Joe Caps on September 1, 2009 at 2:38 PM

What will you guys say when it turns out to be nothing more than a basic civics deal?

Which, surely you realize, it will be just that.

Michelle is stirring the pot.

AnninCA on September 1, 2009 at 2:34 PM

I don’t want a Marxist d!c#wad talking to my grandchildren period. He!!, I wouldn’t let them speak to anyone who thought like you.

thomasaur on September 1, 2009 at 2:38 PM

One does leap out: “Write letters to themselves about what they can do to help the President.” Is that an elective or a prerequisite for mathematics?

Hey, be sure to equip your children with video cams that day. Let’s document the indoctrination on YouTube.

petefrt on September 1, 2009 at 2:39 PM

Refuse? Why would anyone want to refuse to volunteer. Unless you aren’t in your right mind. In which case ObamaCare will provide a nice rest and some medicine at a soon to be depopulated Caribbean resort . . .

rbj on September 1, 2009 at 2:35 PM

Lol. Yeah, I’ll turn into a human folding chair. It’s happened before.

Emily M. on September 1, 2009 at 2:39 PM

Jeeze, all this worrying?

Lighten up, is my advice.

I swear, the candidate who uses a light touch is going to win everything.

AnninCA on September 1, 2009 at 2:23 PM

If George W. Bush had even thought about trying something like this, all you leftists would be howling about how he was “indoctrinating” your kids, the schools would be flat-out refusing to go along, and the ACORN/SEIU buses would already be loading up.

But we’re the ones who are supposed to “lighten up.”

Gator Country on September 1, 2009 at 2:39 PM

Do you think these thug dolts just sit around the Oval Office with their heads together trying to come up with these brilliant “plans”? Why do I keep getting a three stooges vibe from our President and his advisors?

anniekc on September 1, 2009 at 2:39 PM

“Write letters to themselves about what they can do to help the President.”

Help the President! Notice the contrast from JFK’s famous speach, “Ask what you can do for your country!” It’s all about Him. How can we serve him?

He is supposed to represent and serve us!

shick on September 1, 2009 at 2:39 PM

If he keeps pecking away at the nation and its Constitution long enough, and patriots confine themselves to saying “oh, he’ll never make that one work” and “wait until 2010…we’ll show him!” we may wake up one morning to find that his “revolution” has succeeded.

Lost a line while editing….

MrScribbler on September 1, 2009 at 2:39 PM

It would be fair if Sarah Palin came on right after with her own address and they asked the students how they could help her achieve her objectives.

tatersalad on September 1, 2009 at 2:39 PM

I heard the SEIU will be at my school to make sure that any kids that may ask their teacher an “irrelevant” question are delt with accordingly.

WashJeff on September 1, 2009 at 2:39 PM

Seriously, I think this is why the GOP isn’t trusted, either. Read the polls today. People think the GOP is “out of touch” with real lives.

This type of inflammatory demonizing isn’t what regular people in life find remotely credible. It’s just too ridiculous.

He’ll give a talk on democracy and participation, and that’ll be that.

AnninCA on September 1, 2009 at 2:39 PM

I wonder if he will tell them about the scary doctors that cut of limbs and steal tonsils for $$$$$.

Joe Caps on September 1, 2009 at 2:40 PM

now if Bush had attempted … oh. never mind.

Onager on September 1, 2009 at 2:40 PM

If this is just breaking it seems like pretty short notice for the schools. They have their curriculum set well in advance and I’m thinking a lot of schools will have to scramble to get everything coordinated. Our elementary school broadcast the inaugural activities in January but that was during lunch and no one was expected to pay that much attention.

Question: if my first grader is “home sick” that day will that out me as a non-Barry voter among the other parents in my freakishly blue school district? ;)

Missy on September 1, 2009 at 2:40 PM

Stay away from our kids you Marxist lying creep and all your Commie friends! The Kennedy family had no qualms about prostituting their youngsters for KennedyCare – but they glorify some fat jerk who let a young girl drown so he could get himself sober for the cops…………I can’t believe America elected such a totally EVIL Jerk Off as Obama and his ilk……………

Cinday Blackburn on September 1, 2009 at 2:40 PM

Comment pages: 1 2 3 7