September 4 2009, 11:09 AM
It used to be that regardless of his party, if the president of the United States had a special message for children, their parents told them to listen politely. But Douglas County apparently didn't get the memo on basic manners in our republic and is protesting President Barack Obama's effort to deliver an address that simply urges kids to stay in school. After all, this is 2009, The Year of Yelling---a contrast to the 1980s, when President Ronald Reagan touted the value of tax cuts to kids without causing a national ruckus. But rather than turn Obama's address into a learning opportunity, officials in Douglas County will let kids opt out of seeing the president (via Westword). Sorry, Timmy. Report to the lunchroom for some Sponge Bob Square Pants instead. The Denver Post highlights the divide in which parents who don't want their kids to see the webcast on Tuesday deem it "political recruiting" for a "liberal agenda." Highlands Ranch parent Shanneen Barron wrote in an e-mail to the Post, "I believe in the Bible and I believe it has educational value, but teachers aren't allowed to teach on that. So why this? We won't be sending our kids to school on Tuesday." In a headline that could have come from The Onion newspaper, the Colorado Springs Gazette asks, "Area schools ponder how to handle Obama's 'stay in school' speech." Seriously? Many pundits just can't understand the fuss. Gawker writes that the "speech amounts to nothing more than our nation's Commander-in-Chief urging kids to stay in school, for, if they do, perhaps one day they'll be president."