There’s been opposition to the President’s plan to broadcast a “do well in school” message to the American student body. In and of itself, the message is probably harmless and probably a good idea; who is better able to motivate our students than a good-looking, young President Obama? Why are people making a fuss and opposing the president at every turn? The problem lies in that it is being encouraged (some would say pushed) onto the American school system.
Officially, it is a voluntary program. But we remember other “voluntary” programs like prayer in schools. In that instance, any kids that refused to pray with all of the others were either ostracized or branded as atheists. So I’m sure that any kids that opt out of the President’s inspirational message will be similarly affected. I personally do not mind being branded a discontent at age 10, but it does affect your chances to get hired at the local hardware store for the summer when you turn 14. That’s a heavy burden to bear.
The President should bear in mind other efforts to inspire young people without a chance for other voices to be heard. This one-party messaging could eventually morph into something akin to Hitler’s propaganda machine. One of their weirder efforts was this coloring book exhorting the Young German to do something that was probably decent and helpful. But when a commendable exhortation turns into “obey my orders” and “kill Jewish people” then we have a little problem.1
- Just to make sure my message doesn’t get lost: Hitler was a bad man and killed a lot of innocent people. We don’t want to be like him [↩]