September 4, 2009

Listening to Speeches

Pam is right, this is getting crazier by the minute. Why are people freaking out about a president giving a speech? I don't care if the president is liberal or conservative or whatever, he is the president and if he's giving a speech to school children I'd probably let them watch it. It could come from President Obama or President Bush, it doesn't matter. At least Ms. Yingling's concerns were more about delivery than content.

This isn't about politics--it's about being rational, thoughtful citizens. We need to be able to listen to differing views and make up our own minds. I personally thought that George W. Bush's first term was illegitimate and that the high court had no business intervening on the election. But if he had stated that he was giving a speech and he wanted the school children to hear it, if I was able to I would have made it available. He's the president for crying out loud. He's not going to tell them to all run around in the streets with water balloons or something. Jeez.

I mean "indoctrinate"? Really? Into what? Being a citizen in a democracy? It's ok, you don't have to agree with everything they say. You don't even have to watch it. But this scaremongering over different points of view are ridiculous. Especially when you haven't even heard them yet.

Let the man give his speech...then if it's loopy you can criticize.

Since we're on the topic of speeches and ideological differences, I want to share another speech. On October 3, 1983 the recently departed senator, Edward Kennedy gave this amazing speech to Jerry Falwell's then-named Liberty Baptist College, now know as Liberty University. Yes, you read that right. The most liberal senator in congress spoke at Jerry Falwell's college during the height of the whole "moral majority" business. He was, like always, warm and funny and unafraid to say what he thought. No matter your personal political views, it's a beautiful thing to watch.

Oh to live in a time and a place in which healthy and reasoned debate are not only accepted, but embraced. If we can't even listen to each other, how can we learn anything?