by Ernie McCray
I feel like Arsenio Hall because everywhere I roam I see things that make me go: “Hmmm.” Like these crazy people I’ve seen on TV. You know the ones, they’re all blue in the face, looking scarily Incredible Hulkish, some of them without a shred of insurance, shrieking at a man who has: put keeping them healthy and well so they don’t have to foreclose on their American Dreams high up on his list of things to do.
The president is trying to cover their angry sick behinds and they’re screaming about how he’s a nazi looking to brainwash our children “so he can take over the country.” And I’m walking around wondering, “Hmmm, am I on Candid Camera? Twilight Zone? Punk’d?”
And what was with that not wanting the president to encourage students to do well in school – like he did, for goodness sake. I mean how many people can look our children in the eye and say: “Hey, kids, study hard and make something of yourself and someday you might be on the Late Show with Letterman. Harry Letterman.” Talking about misdirected anger.
Now I wouldn’t be the least bit interested in these enraged mobs of American Patriots if it weren’t for their BS concern about children. See, I don’t remember any of them taking to the streets and dominating town hall meetings at times when some righteous anger was truly called for.
Where were these “love the children wannabe’s” when, say, Dubya, got in their face, selling wolf tickets that were a disgrace, feeding them some jive about Saddam hiding some bombs when he, as Commander in Chief, had scopes at his disposal that can detect a pimple on a mosquitos’ behind and, in no time, he sent their children, their eighteen and nineteen year olds, off to a war that broke all the rules for starting wars. And for too long they perished in the madness practically anonymously.
But, hmmm, that wasn’t “Shocking and Awful” enough for Them the People. So they won’t likely rattle Obama’s cage about a matter they should: his war mentality; his support of Bush’s No Child Left Behind which militarizes far too many of our children as their school districts lose funding if they don’t provide military recruiters with information about them.
Sadly, here in San Diego, there are students who began the school year finding out that their back-to-school enrollment forms were pre-marked with the answer “yes” to the question regarding whether or not they would want information about them released to the military. This, after a number of students and parents and teachers and relic community activists like yours truly, representing ENAC (Education Not Arms Coalition), struggled for nearly two years to ensure that students would no longer be enlisted in JROTC involuntarily or without their parents being properly informed. We also ended JROTC shooting ranges at our schools.
Having to print “No Weapons Training” picket signs and fliers and rent buses and form car pools and meet for hours and wait in line to speak at a podium after sitting all evening just to ensure a minimal just environment for our children – that should be enough to make anyone angry.
Hmmm, so it appears that when there’s real harm being done to our children, at school of all places, there aren’t enough angry people around. So we have to settle for small victories. A few hundred can’t match the thousands/millions of people needed to protect students properly. The Department of Defense knows that very well. There may no longer be shooting ranges in San Diego’s schools but they still exist on many campuses throughout the country, sponsored by the JROTC which denies being a recruiting tool of the military – while the DoD boasts before Congress in the House of Representatives (right) about its success in recruiting students for the armed services. Add the JROTC’s success with that of the spit shined sharply dressed military recruiters who frequent our nation’s campuses, trying to make quotas with smooth “you can make a difference” speeches so they don’t have to get back in harm’s way – Well: “Another one (of our kids) bites the dust!”
Now, I’d say if we just have to get our Hanes in a bunch about something where our children are concerned it ought to be about our government’s unrelenting efforts to enlist them to fight its wretched wars.
Seeing our children put at risk of becoming cannon fodder should make us go: “Hmmm.”