Tag Archives: President Barack Obama

COMBAT DIARIES #5: WHAT HAS AMERICA DONE FOR ME?

Image courtesy of emptyglass / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of emptyglass / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

This is a guest post by Dana Casey.

It has been so many years since I taught in a school where the Pledge of Allegiance is a normal part of the morning procedures that can’t even remember how long it has been. This year the Pledge was made a part of daily morning announcements at my current school. I do not have a first period class; nonetheless, when the Pledge came over the intercom, I stood with my hand over my heart facing the flag in my empty room and pledged along with Mr. K who leads the school. The flag in my room is one that I purchased, because, just like so many other things, my school does not supply flags for classrooms. I think my room may be the only room in the school graced with the stars and stripes.

One day Mr. K was late getting to the announcements and so he delivered them during second period. I was taken by surprise and was in the middle of doing the drill. I scrambled to prepare the students and to give them quick instructions on my classroom policy. I admonished, “Here is my policy on the Pledge. You don’t have to stand or say the Pledge, but you must respect the moment and sit quietly while others pledge.” Mr. K started the Pledge; I stood with my hand on my heart and said it along with him, and not one — not ONE — student stood up with me.

When the Pledge was done, I looked at my students in disbelief. I said to the class that I was ashamed. I could not believe that not one student had enough pride in America to stand and say the pledge, but the more I thought about it I was not really surprised.

I completely respect someone’s right not to stand for the Pledge if he feels it goes against his beliefs. The freedom not to do such a thing is an important part of American freedoms. Actually, way back in 1973 when I was 12 years old, I alone in my class refuse to stand in protest of the Vietnam War. One wise teacher challenged me in way that I never forgot. He said that though he respected my right to refuse, he wondered if I actually understood exactly what I was protesting and whether I was sure I was making appropriate protest in response. I never forgot what he said and, after giving it some thought, I once again joined my classmates in stating the pledge.

In 1996, decades later, I remembered that intelligent encounter with that teacher when I had a few students who wouldn’t stand. I presented them the same challenge. One young man replied, “What has America ever done for me?” The first response that I gave to him was John Kennedy’s famous quote “And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country.” Then I told him that he should go visit many other countries of the world and he would realize that our poor are their middle class and their poor were always going to be poor unlike in America where a man like Ben Carson could go from dire poverty to being an extremely wealthy and nationally admired man. He would then discover what America had to offer him. His only response was to snort in disbelief.

My current group of students didn’t care at all; they didn’t even throw out a challenge like that young man from earlier in my career. They didn’t refuse to stand up, they just couldn’t be bothered. But it is even worse than that. The students that I teach have no American identity at all. In fact, for most of their school career they have been given a decidedly anti-American education. Common Core will continue that anti-American indoctrination nationally (as I will be further revealing in an upcoming article).

Many of my high school students can quote from Malcolm X, “We didn’t land on Plymouth Rock; Plymouth Rock landed on us.”, but they couldn’t give you a single quote from a single U.S. president, not even from Obama. Neither can they tell you when the Civil War, the Revolutionary War, or any other war took place, why it was fought, or who it was fought against. They cannot say what is in the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution. Most of them do not even know that the Emancipation Proclamation was over 151 years ago and think that it happened only a few generations ago. Most of them cannot tell you the reason for celebrating the 4th of July, Veteran’s’ Day, or Memorial Day. They have no pride in being American, because no one has ever taught them why America is an exceptional nation and what freedoms and opportunities America affords them.

Instead, my students have been specifically taught that America has done nothing but cheat them. One of my students from Honduras insisted that all white people have five bedroom homes with two car garages. I told him that I had nonesuch and lived just up the street in a three bedroom row house in a neighborhood with many of my students. He refused to believe me. My students also believe that minorities are a majority of the country (I know, it is oxymoronic). When asked to estimate the percentage of African-Americans in the country, the answers that I get are 45% to 90%! My students have told me that life for African-Americans in this country just as bad as it was at the beginning of the twentieth century. The national leaders of these minorities like Jackson and Sharpton and even the Clintons perpetuate these lies to stir up race hatred and keep us divided, while they line their own pockets with impunity.

America had better re-educate our children soon on why she is such an exceptional country. We must teach the real history of America, her failings and her successes. Currently, most urban students are only taught an exaggerated and biased analysis of her failings and only in relationship to their minority population giving a deeply skewed perception of what America really is. We must emphasize the opportunities America offers which are unique and exceptional. This is why so many want to come to this great land. We must embolden the rugged individual, unlike Obama who has declared him dead. We must once again instill a sense of pride in our country so that my students proudly stand with me, their fellow American, and voluntarily pledge allegiance to the United States of America.

Thanks for stopping by! What are your thoughts on the pledge? Consider commenting below. If you liked this article, please share it with a friend and on your social media stream of choice? 

Dana R. Casey is a veteran high school English teacher of more than two decades in an East-coast urban system.  She is a life-long student of theology, philosophy, and politics, dedicated to the true Liberalism of the Enlightenment, as defined by our Founders and enshrined in our Declaration of Independence, Constitution and Bill of Rights. You can find out more about Dana over at http://www.candiddiscourse.com/.

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Filed under American culture, Guest Post, Speaking Out

Brief Thoughts on @ArneDuncan’s Attack on White, Suburban Mothers

For those that have not heard, Arne Duncan recently told a group of state school superintendents that he found it “fascinating” that opposition to the Common Core comes from “white suburban moms who — all of a sudden — [realize] their child isn’t as brilliant as they thought they were and their school isn’t as good as they thought they were.”

So, here’s a couple of things I find fascinating. I find it fascinating that Mr. Duncan has never taught a day in his life. I find it fascinating that Mr. Duncan has never been a principal of a school at any level. But somehow, this guy with a sociology degree from Harvard, ended up the head of Chicago Public Schools for seven years and then would go on to head the Federal Department of Education. Who says people of inability can’t rise to greatness? Arne Duncan is quite possibly the biggest fraud ever perpetrated on education.

Now, Mr. Duncan has decided to generalize and stereotype an entire race of females. I thought that all progressives like Mr. Duncan were above this type of behavior? I thought they loved all women and all races of people? I thought they were highly educated intellectuals who saw the world in such a profound and deep way that little old me would never understand?

This comment is indicative of the worldview of Mr. Duncan and our Dear Leader, President Obama. They only see the world through race, gender, and class. Progressives can not stand being questioned by those they believe to be less educated than them. And people (that includes women and men and people of other skin color) are starting to question their “brilliant” education deform initiative called Common Core.

Keep it up! The more you push these people the more their true colors are revealed and the mask comes off. It shows you are making a difference once they start attacking you in ways such as this. People will eventually get tired of the middle school attacks that Common Core proponents often levy against the opposition. We just need to be ready for a solution when this thing comes crumbling down.

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Filed under National Standards (Common Core)

Mandated Behavioral Assessments for Connecticut Students? Homeschoolers Included?

by Gretchen Logue of Missouri Education Watchdog

Do you think you can keep your children from government mandates if you homeschool?  It is increasingly doubtful you can shield your children from having to submit to governmental data mining of their personal information, even if you don’t have your child enrolled in public education.  Government agencies want educational data as well as wanting to require information on your child’s behavioral health.  Watch out for this type of legislation in your state.

From the Family Institute of Connecticut:

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Stop New Mandate Attacking Parental Rights

Stop S.B. 374, Mandated Assessments of Children
In all the years we have been fighting for pro-family values at the state Capitol, we have never seen as invasive a bill as S.B. 374, An Act Requiring Behavioral Health Assessments for Children. This bill would mandate that public school children in grades 6, 8, 10 and 12 and home-schooled children at ages 12, 14 and 17 be given behavioral health assessments, whether or not parents approve.
S.B. 374 will have a public hearing on Friday, March 8th at 11:00 A.M. at Wesleyan University. We need parents to be prepared, to attend the hearing and to help defeat this bill.
No one has the right to force children to have psychological evaluations that are against the will of their parents and possibly unnecessary. This bill may violate Connecticut’s HIPAA privacy law. What does the government intend to do with these assessments? If a child gets a “bad” assessment, the state is empowered to do…what, exactly? What will the test be? How will it be administered? These and other questions remain unanswered by S.B. 374.
S.B. 374 is a significant attack on homeschooling and public school families, interference by the government in compelling the upbringing of a child, something the State Board of Education does not have the authority to do.

Here are four ways you can help FIC Action stop the Mandated Assessments Bill and protect our parental rights: 

1) Use our Grassroots Action Center to send an e-mail directly to your state senator and state representative by clicking on the link at the bottom of this message (then click “take action” at the bottom of the next screen). We have provided some basic points, but please either put the message in your own words or add a brief introduction and conclusion!  Personalized and polite messages have a much greater impact. Let our legislators know that you oppose any bill that forces children to be “assessed” without their parents’ permission.
2) Attend the public hearing and testify against S.B. 374. The Public Health Committee will hold a public hearing on Friday, March 8, 2013 at 11:00 A.M. at Beckham Hall, Wesleyan University, 55 Wyllys Avenue, Middletown. The Committee is accepting electronic testimony via email at [email protected] Please submit electronic testimony no later than 5:00 P.M. on Thursday, March 7, 2013. If you are unable to submit electronic testimony, please submit 10 copies of written testimony at the time of sign-up. Sign-up for the hearing will begin at 9:00 A.M. on the Second Floor of Beckham Hall. The first hour of the hearing is reserved for Legislators, Constitutional Officers, State Agency Heads and Chief Elected Municipal Officials. Speakers will be limited to three minutes of testimony.
3) Click here to donate to the Family Institute of Connecticut Action. FIC Action, the lobbying arm of Connecticut’s pro-family movement, is your eyes and ears at the state Capitol. Your support allows us to continue to be your voice for faith and family.
4) Forward this message to every like-minded state resident you know and ask them to do likewise. We need as much support as possible to protect our children from unwanted state-mandated “assessments.”
Thank you for making your voice heard in the fight to protect parental rights in Connecticut.
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Senator Harp said she is particularly eager to follow-up on one of President Obama’s recommendations with regard to enhanced delivery of mental health services: renewed focus on adolescents and providing for them access to the specific resources they need.

“So much of the gun violence we have witnessed is committed by troubled young people—we really must redouble our efforts to help adolescents with their unique developmental issues,” Senator Harp said. “Researchers are consistently learning more about brain development and the challenges some young adults face. We have to be sure all that new information becomes widely available so it can be useful.”

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Filed under Connecticut, Privacy, State Issues