Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Why the Fear?

For someone that professes political ambiguity and general indifference, I sure do write about politics a lot. As stated in other posts, I’m largely confused and torn politically. I consider myself a conservative and I consider myself a liberal but I don’t consider myself a moderate…if that’s even possible. Maybe it’s just easier to incessantly bitch about things when you’re that uncommitted. And I guess it’s a general feeling of helplessness and disdain that motivates me to think and write politically. And right now I feel both.

I’ve been overly sensitive to Facebook Prophets as of late. Those soap-boxers that use FB as a vehicle to vilify Obama or Glenn Beck. Thank God for the “hide” function. I’m routinely astounded at how narrow-minded and silly people can be. Obama is not the anti-Christ. Beck is not the hate-mongering harbinger of death. Liberals have an agenda and they use media to promote it, i.e. Bill Maher and John Stewart (who is brilliant by the way.) Conservatives also use media to promote their agenda, i.e. Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity. Each side can be valid and each side can go full retard. What hurts me is the chaos that is created by such clashing. It is dark and it is ugly. We Americans have lost respect for the system and its offices and I blame the partisan media.

Yesterday my two boys brought home permission forms from school, demanding parental consent for them to watch an upcoming presidential address to American students on the importance of education. You actually had to sign it to allow your child to participate. Not to decline it, but to allow it. In other words, the district’s default position was to keep the kids away from the address unless otherwise stated by their parents. I was dumbfounded.

I cannot believe we have come to live in such a fearful society. What in the hell are we afraid of? Do we think that Obama is going to use this opportunity to brainwash our children into supporting gay marriage or immigration reform? Is he going to subliminally command them to kill the prime minister of Malaysia? Why the fear?!

When I was a child I was taught that the president of the United States of America held an important, almost sacred office. Not because it was Regan, but because he was the leader of the free world. The office stood for freedom and justice. Not the man. The OFFICE. Regan had issues. Bush had issues. Clinton had issues. The other Bush had issues. Obama has issues. But he holds the most important office on the planet and it is our duty to listen to what he has to say, then use our God-given judgment to discern what we believe to be right or wrong, true or false. I believe that he, at his core, stands for freedom and justice…just as Regan did. I am not an Obama guy. Some of his ideas scare me. But I believe his intentions and motivations with regards to my children’s education are pure.

Bottom line, this is an address on the importance of education. I don’t care if it’s the president, Glenn Beck, or Charles freaking Manson speaking. Any help in strengthening the importance of education in the minds of my children is quite welcome. It doesn't matter if the office is held by a democrat, republican, libertarian, or whig. My children will grow up to respect that office and hopefully aspire to it.


Jayd McFerson said...

Last year's EQ Labor Day BBQ was at Milburn Park just days before Obama's first ever address to kids about education. A reporter with the local throw-away newspaper was asking people what they thought about it and people told them to go talk to me, perhaps thinking I'd have some fiercely conservative opinion on the matter. I was like "He's talking about education? More power to him". If he was addressing them about his desire to advance the welfare state, I'd have some concerns, but isn't "hey, you kids need to get an education" still a bi-partisan desire (in spite of the press trying to differentiate the liberal/conservative divide on every topic known to man)? Teach education, teach character, teach honesty, that's all non-political.

On a related note, I've gotten to the point where I feel like only God is allowed to take an extreme stance on anything. I believe that God is omniscient and also that He has our back, so I trust him if He needs to take an extreme stance on something to help us keep ourselves straight. But, anyone else? Nobody else is smart enough to truly know (not Obama, not Beck, etc). So, I agree, their occasional forays into total extremeness can get really annoying.

ZAC said...

Oh Texas. We feel the same way about the Presidential Speech. However, our school didn't make us sign to let our children watch it. They told us to let them know if we didn't want our children to see it, and we're just not that closed-minded. I hope your open-mindedness spreads Tyler!

The Barker Family said...

reminds me-Last year, Jada's school sent home one of those same kind of permission slips. I signed it and sent it back. . but when it was time for them to go watch the address, they made her stay back in the class because they misplaced the permission slip or some crap. wth? I was excited for her to listen and hear her reaction when she came home, so i was furious! This year, they only sent a notice home saying we needed to send a note to school if we didn't want them to watch. So strange. But you're right. . why the fear?