Glenn Beck and other conservative media figures are now attacking President Obama's proposal to extend the length of school days and the school year, adding to conservative media's recent penchant for fearmongering about children in order to smear progressives. Beck and Rush Limbaugh claimed government mandates for longer school days would give the government more time to “indoctrinate” kids, and Michelle Malkin said Obama is acting as “school czar.”
Beck, Limbaugh, RedState.com attack Obama's school proposal as a time grab for “indoctrination”
Beck: “Longer school days, more indoctrination? I don't think so.” On his September 29 radio show, Beck, presumably referring to YouTube videos of kids singing about Obama, said of Obama's school proposal: “We have the new indoctrination happening at school. Then, the president has come out and said that parents need to have their kids spending less time at home with the family and more time at school. He wants now to have longer school days. ... Longer school days, more indoctrination? I don't think so.” Beck also said the government is “pushing daycare,” which would also mean “they can indoctrinate.” From the show:
BECK: We have the new -- we have the new indoctrination happening at school. Then, the president has come out and said that parents need to have their kids spending less time at home with the family and more time at school. He wants now to have longer school days. He wants them to go year-round.
I -- you know what? I don't have a problem with the kids going year-round. That's the way it happens in Utah, I believe.
PAT GRAY (radio host): Yeah, they do.
BECK: And it works. I mean, we no longer have to have kids go out and plow the fields in the summer. And that's the reason we had it that way, because the family needed help in the summer. They retain more. Longer school days, more indoctrination? I don't think so.
BECK: We now have the government coming in and saying friends can't drop, you know, their kids off at your house so you can get to work. This is crazy. Why would they want -- why would they want to stop somebody from doing that. Because, as we told you last week, they are pushing daycare. They are pushing daycare. That way, they can control the money that goes into daycare, which means they can control the environment, and they can indoctrinate. [Premiere Radio Networks' The Glenn Beck Show, 9/29/09]
Limbaugh: "[W]e all know why he wants this done. This is just more indoctrination time." On his September 29 show, Limbaugh said, “Obama is among those making a case that American kids aren't spending enough time in school; wants to get rid of the summer vacation and have kids in school year-round. Has anybody thought about -- we all know why he wants this done. This is just more indoctrination time ... more time to be indoctrinated into Obamaism and so forth.”
RedState.com: Longer school day pitch is “Obama-speak” for “gosh darn it all, indoctrination takes time!” On September 29, RedState.com contributor “mailloux” purported to translate Obama's statement about the proposal -- what he referred to as “Obama-speak” -- into “everyday English.” Mailloux wrote that Obama meant that he “would like to lengthen the time I hold them as a captive audience.” From the post:
Translation from Obama-speak into everyday English?
Any revolution worth its salt knows its future depends on how well the youth are indoctrinated. And, gosh darn it all, indoctrination takes time! So, instead of strengthening families which will surely draw your children away from me, I would like to lengthen the time I hold them as a captive audience. You know ... stretch out the school day, shorten the summer, and maybe even make them attend Saturday sessions. Families are overrated anyway. It's the village that counts. I heard that somewhere ... oh yeah, and did I mention I'm the village chief!
Townhall.com: “Year-Round Indoctrination?” On Townhall.com, Matt Lewis wrote, under the headline “Year-Round Indoctrination?” that “President Obama wants longer school days and a longer school year." He then wrote, “Will more time at school = more time for this???," linking to a FoxNews.com article about a YouTube video of New Jersey schoolchildren singing about Obama.
Malkin: “Obama plays summer school czar.” In a post on her website titled, “Obama plays summer school czar,” Malkin wrote of Obama's proposal, “If schools wasted less time on 'social justice,' 'Everyday Math' crap, eco-zealotry, field trips to gay weddings and illegal alien day labor centers, rappin', revolution, and radicalism, and searching for children's 'inner Obamas,' they wouldn't need to make up all the squandered days and weeks during the summer."
Media recently fearmongered about New Jersey school kids “SHOCK VIDEO” as evidence of “indoctrination”
Conservative media: Video is evidence of “indoctrination.” Numerous media figures, including Fox News' Monica Crowley, Bill O'Reilly, and Beck, and CNN's Lou Dobbs, claimed a video -- originally flogged by the Drudge Report -- that purported to show "[s]chool kids taught to praise Obama" was evidence of “indoctrination.” Others compared the kids' performance to what might happen in a dictatorship. Beck said that the song sounded like “a hymnal for a dictator.” Limbaugh compared the school activity to those seen in Cuba and Venezuela. MSNBC's Contessa Brewer said it's something “you might see coming from North Korea.” On Fox News' Hannity, guest S.E. Cupp said, “It's like Havana elementary school,” and Nina Easton claimed, “Mao would be proud.”
“SHOCK VIDEO” timeline: From YouTube, to conservative blogs and Drudge, to Fox News. Taking cues from conservative blogs and the Drudge Report, Fox News and its online properties flogged the video. Indeed, in discussing the significance of the story, Fox News host Megyn Kelly said that the video, which the school's superintendent has said was unauthorized, “is getting attention on the Drudge Report website this morning.”
Conservatives fearmonger about kids to smear progressives. Beck and other right-wing media figures have recently fearmongered about how Obama and progressive policies will harm children; among other things, Beck and these other media figures have repeatedly accused Obama of “indoctrinating” schoolchildren, aired unauthorized videos of children singing Obama's praises, and attacked Obama's “school safety czar.” On his September 28 television show, Beck continued the trend by hosting 9-12 Project mothers, along with their children, who are “concerned” about “their kids' futures.”
From the September 29 edition of Premiere Radio Networks' The Rush Limbaugh Show:
LIMBAUGH: So you had kids here singing the songs -- and we meant to get to this yesterday, and I didn't get to it. Obama is among those making a case that American kids aren't spending enough time in school; wants to get rid of the summer vacation and have kids in school year-round. Has anybody thought about -- we all know why he wants this done. This is just more indoctrination time. Plus, it's a way to get raises for the teachers, which is a big union supporter. More raises -- I mean, they gotta teach year-round? Oh, we need more money. Oh, of course, that's the whole plan. And more time to be indoctrinated into Obamaism and so forth.