Conservatives, not Obama, indoctrinate the American public

Monday, September 7, 2009 | 12:01 a.m. CDT

If fear mongering from the extreme right-wing pundits is not scary enough, they have taken a new strategy in their battle against anything progressive. Their new target: the president encouraging our children to graduate high school.

Conservatives, especially those of the religious right, have been choking the life out of public and secular education for what seems to be eons. They have blocked funding and crossed that fine, but deeply scored, line of the First Amendment that protects our freedom to practice our own religion and prevents any government-sanctioned religion.

Tuesday’s address by the president to the students of America is “on the importance of taking responsibility for their education, challenging them to set goals and do everything they can to succeed.” The right-wing extremists now want to block this noble speech, to put America even further behind the curve in math and science, literature and chemistry.

This will not be an “indoctrination speech,” as conservative talk show hosts Glenn Beck and Martin Steyn (sitting in for Rush Limbaugh) have so boldly declared. The president will not turn “his team of brainwashers on the task of indoctrinating America’s youth,” as Lauri Reagan wrote on It will not, as others have strongly suggested, lead to the recruitment of our children to a Hitler- style youth brigade.

It is not mandatory for every school or classroom to play this speech live or from video. It is not an indoctrination for some extreme left-wing mandate. It is not brainwashing our children to enter some maniacal corps of fascists and communists. It is the president of the United States, who came from humble background much like Lincoln, to be a mentor, to congratulate students for being in school and encouraging them to graduate.

To be a progressive means to move forward, a conservative to keep the status quo, or for more than a few, to move backward. Conservatives are screaming to reduce taxes, to assist the rich to hide their money so they can become richer. They want to avoid funding public education, social services, health care reform, even benefits promised to our fighting forces. It appears that conservatives want to bankrupt our great nation financially and morally. Moreover, we are letting them.

Now who is really unpatriotic while brainwashing and indoctrinating the American people?

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