I Support My President

I was once a political “junkie” listening to every speech, flipping through the various channels to get a taste for all of the pundits, but in recent time I have tried to divest myself of these habits because they were in a word – DEPRESSING!

Last night was one of those nights when I could not listen because I knew that so much of the rhetoric would be laced in hate and venom. Why so much hate? Well in my opinion it has to do with the “browning” of this country and a fear of loosing control.

The “browning” is not just in the White House, it is the fact that there are more and more minorities in this country, and a lot of people can’t handle that! Some minorities included.

But this post is about me supporting my President and why. I support him because I believe that he has the best interests of all Americans when he attempts to shape the policies of this country and because he is a man of character.

It takes a man of strong character to admit that he hasn’t satisfied the masses and an even stronger one to once again extend the “olive branch” to his dissenters in an effort to move this country forward. I have not read his statement in its entirety, but this reporting suggests President Obama is once again open to dialogue.

I will begin to watch in a few days when the volume of rhetoric has been reduced to a reasonable level, because it is now time for the Republicans and the Tea Party to play their hand. It’s a hand I believe we are all familiar with, but now it is up to the American people to choose between substance and rhetoric. Allegedly the people have spoken and they want to “Change the Course” according to Rep. Boehner, but what is the course and at what cost?

So as not to ramble I will end by restating – I Support President Barack Obama, and it has nothing to do with the color of his skin, but everything to do with the content of his character!

Standing Up for Education – Where is the Problem?

  • so·cial·ism
  • Pronunciation: \ˈsō-shə-ˌli-zəm\
  • Function: noun
  • Date: 1837

1 : any of various economic and political theories advocating collective or governmental ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods
2 a : a system of society or group living in which there is no private property b : a system or condition of society in which the means of production are owned and controlled by the state
3 : a stage of society in Marxist theory transitional between capitalism and communism and distinguished by unequal distribution of goods and pay according to work done

The definition above is courtesy of the Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary, and I post it so that we can see first hand what this term that has been bandied about over the last several days really means. Now from what you read, where does education come into play? Where does advising children that the best path in life is one that includes studying hard, and preparing yourself for the future fit into that definition?

President Obama prepared a speech to give to Arlington, Virginia high school students, and the mission of this address is to motivate students to commit themselves to preparing for their futures. He wants them to take an active role in their own destiny – where then is there a problem? In reading the speech I was pleased to see this passage, which I think speaks volumes about the problems that we as a country face in schools, I’ve talked a lot about your government’s responsibility for setting high standards, supporting teachers and principals, and turning around schools that aren’t working where students aren’t getting the opportunities they deserve. But at the end of the day, we can have the most dedicated teachers, the most supportive parents, and the best schools in the world – and none of it will matter unless all of you fulfill your responsibilities. Unless you show up to those schools; pay attention to those teachers; listen to your parents, grandparents and other adults; and put in the hard work it takes to succeed.”

Helping students understand that they have a key role in their own success is a good thing. It is something that needs to be reiterated by parents, teachers and community members. Thinking back to my school days, I don’t know if it was presented to me in this manner, but I was always aware that my “job” was to go to school and to do the best that I could. I wonder if this message is being communicated in enough households today, and if not – then I wonder how will this message be communicated?

One of my strong views is that we must first educate many of our parents. Unfortunately, we live in a society where a number of our parents were not prepared for the role that they took on at the birth of that infant, and they continue a cycle of that includes under-achievement, self-doubt and satisfaction with mediocrity.

To have a President concerned enough to speak to students about their role in their futures should be an event applauded by all, because if we work in a trickle down theory – the top is saying education is important and that should be spread throughout the ranks.

Criticism is a part of the job, but aren’t we all interested in a better prepared and educated America? How is this a bad thing?

As always, I would love to hear your feedback, so if you have an opinion please post it in the Comments section.

~Peace

President Obama Comes to Cleveland

The news junkie in me was in full force yesterday as I trudged through monsoon like rain (exaggeration intended) to hear President Barack Obama discuss his plans for health care reform at Shaker Heights High School. Shout out to Kelly for hooking me up with a ticket!

Knowing that parking would be a high commodity I drove a couple of blocks and found a decent spot, and as luck would have it the rain begins to come down in torrents, but I would not be deterred and began my trek to the school.

Carrying my straw bag with my 35mm SLR, palm sized digital, Flip video, note pad and othe goodies I arrived soaked from my thighs down. The upper body was insulated by my hooded raincoat. Everything was held in my straw bag because the letter with my ticket said no bags, so I figured my camera bag might not get in – a fact I would later find was probably incorrect.

Again, as luck would have it as soon as I arrived at the line to enter the gymnasium the rain stopped! Luckily I had timed my arrival pretty good, and didn’t have to stand in line more than about fifteen minutes before reaching the security checkpoint. The officers manning security were very nice and conversational, one actually telling me I could ony bring in five items as he checked out all of my electronic equipment. They were also very helpful in assisting me in retrieving my cellphones and bluetooth – inadvertently left at the check in table. I guess I had too many items after all!

Inside I chatted with a few local politicians and media types and awaited the President’s arrival. I was surprised at how punctual he was, starting only about five minutes later than scheduled.

Introducing the President was a retired autoworker who spoke of having to work part-time in order to pay the rising costs for health care.

The president stuck to his message ensuring those present that his proposal is an effort to help more Americans receive adequate health care. He knows the plan is not without some flaws, but that it is desire for the various Congressional Committees to hammer out the details.

When questioned about the timeline, the President said he believes that in order to have anything done in Washington you have to set deadlines, and his true goal is to have reform in place before the end of the year.

Speaking to a largely Democratic audience, President Obama’s message was well received and he closed by urging the attendees to keep the heat on their Congressional representatives.

Really now, it was a fly!!!

I’m back and although there have been a number of things to talk about over the last several weeks, time has not been on my side. Today, I have a little time and what is everyone talking about – President Obama killing a fly! Give me a break, they are disease carrying insects that annoy everyone at this time of the year. The fact that PETA has been contacted by “multiple media outlets” seeking a statement shows just how nonsensical the media has become.