"What Are Our Children Watching?"
I have experienced some very scary stuff. I've been lost in the middle of the woods in the middle of the night. Once there was a loaded shot gun with the hammer pulled back and the finger on the trigger while someone told me he would have no problem killing me, no remorse. I have been chased by satanic worshipers after stumbling upon their sacrifice ritual. I have confronted a political candidate on the side of the road after he was outed by the local paper for badmouthing a widow who he claimed was campaigning on her husband's coffin. Angry dogs and knives have been drawn against me with the threat of violence while I was a repo-man for a rent to own organization. I have done stupid things to anger violent people.
I've been married. With Children. I've faced the fact that I could have lost one of them in the past. And might again in the future.
But nothing terrifies me more then asking a public official a question while already knowing the answer. An answer I don't like.
Before this goes any further, let me cut some of you off at the past: I don't think ANY political group should be allowed to make political movies to be shown in school. Period. I don't care if the group is Liberal, Conservative, Neo-Traditional, Agnostic or Religious. How hard would it be to make schools a politically free zone? With that said...
Here's a simple question that I had after watching a segment of Glen Beck's show the night of September 22nd, "What are our children watching when they're in school?" Are our children watching political propaganda movies?
I watch a lot of media for these sites. A LOT of media. And I listen to a lot of talk radio - from "Conservative" WRKO (since when is convicted felon and former Speaker of the Massachusetts House of Representatives Democrat Thomas Finneran a "Conservative?") to 96.9FM Talk, to NPR. When I get the chance I'll watch what's going on the networks, like Glen Beck when they put his segments on their server.
On September 22nd, Glen Beck starts off by saying this: "These aren't rhetorical questions, I really want answers. If I'm wrong, let me know how. Help me. Help me figure the puzzle out... People are just trying to open their minds and figure things out."
After watching this and doing some follow-up reading, I have some questions of my own. And a rant... I digress.
Glen Beck shows this disturbing diagram explaining how George Soros of MoveOn.org has ties to organizations with what he thinks are shady characters and nefarious intentions. He showed how "Apollo Alliance," "ACORN," "SEIU," "The TIDES Foundation" are all "tied together" in some strange sort of cabal that would make anyone's hair stand on the back of their neck. The mere notion that there's a man nobody elected that has his hands in more "Social Organizations" and has more influence on the political process then the people we elect into office should be enough to concern everyone everywhere on the political spectrum.
Glen Beck asks the simple question, what is this current administration working towards? What are they actually doing? Who is "actually" in control?
He then seems to move on and talk about The Fairness Doctrine and the "Diversity Czar" Mark Lloyd who says that it wouldn't go far enough. We need to silence the opinion of any one who asks tough questions of this current administration. Some people who are in power now have to step down to make room for someone who is of the "correct" political mindset. By the way, Glen Beck reminds us... Mark Lloyd worked for "The TIDES Foundation."
OK? Totally unrelated. You folks are asking, what does this have to do with what our kids are watching in school?
Glen Beck mentions a movie put together by "The TIDES Foundation" called "The Story Of Stuff," narrated by Annie Leonard. It's a great little movie, it's about 22 minutes long and it talks about the long term repercussions of modern consumerism. There are something's I agree with, and there are other facts that are total crap.
A quick "for example:" It's totally untrue that we only have "4% of our forests left." Logging companies replant the trees they cut, Annie... so we're not losing "all" of our forests. Oh, and flat panel monitors are actually better for the environment because the use less electricity. Crap, why do I bother with people who don't allow a simple fact get in the way of spouting off more propaganda... needless to say that there's a lot of crap that's sprinkled on this heaping mound of half-truths and misinformation. Did I digress again?
There's a lot of good things said in "The Story Of Stuff," the biggest in my book (or website) is either making stuff that lasts, or not getting suckered into buying the 'latest and the greatest' because Madison Ave. tells us to. But that's not the point of this rant.
It's "Propaganda" aimed at children. The point is that a political organization created a video to be shown to our children in our schools, while at the same time someone who once worked with some of the aforementioned groups who is now the "Diversity Czar" wants to physically remove some people from running and operating their own media.
Here's someone like Mark Lloyd who wants to control who says what on the air-waves or the internet, while at the same time has "The Tides Foundation" on his resume, the same group that funded a propaganda video aimed at children?
JJust think about this for a moment.
For those of us who see "no problem" with this, Imagine for just a minute that the shoe was on the other foot. Keith Oberman spends 20 minutes explaining on his show while showing his disturbing diagram that explains how a conservative "Think-Tank" dude has ties to organizations with what Oberman thinks are shady characters and nefarious intentions. He showed how Halliburton, KBR, FEMA, Monsanto, R.J. Reynolds, "BlackRain" and all these other questionable groups are all "tied together" in some strange sort of cabal that would make anyone's hair stand on the back of their neck.
Someone nobody elected has his hands in more "Conservative Organizations" and has more influence on the political process then the people we elect into office. Keith Oberman asks the simple question, what was the prior administration working towards? What were they actually doing? Who was "actually" in control?
In this what-if, this conservative groups made a video that's about 20 minutes long about how the Patriot Act is a "good" thing, which stars an attractive woman in front of a white board animated with cartoons... explaining that there are "bad people" out there who want to harm us, and to get them we have to bend some "good people's" civil rights once in a while. This woman makes the argument that if you're not doing anything wrong and you have nothing to hide, why be afraid of letting the government go through your e-mails or listen into your phone calls? It's all in everyone's best interest. Let's all pitch in and help Uncle Sam catch the bad guys!
And, this video made by Halliburton, Monsanto, or "Blackrain" is pure Conservative Propaganda aimed at children. While you're imagining that. Imagine the outrage from parents who were told by their children that they watched this video. Without your permission or knowledge. You would be pretty mad, wouldn't you.
Or is it safe to say: "pissed off!"
OK, still not getting it?
Imagine for two minutes that there's a "benign" group called The "NSDAP." [Five random letters I put together using keys found on my key board...]
NSDAP started off small as a grass roots organization in someone's basement by concerned citizens who want to fix what they see as severe problems in the world, starting with unfair labor practices in the country and through out the world. The NSDAP is also concerned that smaller countries are penalized for the wars fought and won by larger countries and puts too much restrictions on the losers or countries that serve as innocent bystanders.
After the publication of one or two controversial books and a charismatic membership drive, the NSDAP becomes one of the fastest growing social/political organization with ties to other organizations, most of them with socialist or labor-party ties. This group begins to fund branches in other countries.
These people at The NSDAP are all about "the common good," doing what's right and bringing about change, social justice and equity. They also want to prosecute the people who are responsible for the global economic down-turn and who participated an act of conspiracy through an act of terrorism.
To help in their cause, The NSDAP starts making propaganda videos marketed for children. The first few are kind of benign, talking about how to be a better citizen and how we need to change the fundamentals of our countries economy - not just for our own good, but for the rest of the world. Let's do what's fair and right. In this video there are two references to a "bad" group of people who are the cause of all societies troubles. We don't like them, and we want to put an end to them and what they do.
They make the planet sad! They're trashing everything!
Organizations with ties to NSDAP who promote social justice are making these videos, and teachers, principals and school administrators show these videos to students during class time. Without the parents knowledge much less permission.
But where's the harm? These are fun, amusing and thought provoking videos, Why the angst? There are only a few people in the media who are asking who are The "NSDAP," and those who are have a reputation for being muckrakers, trouble makers and partisan blowhards! [Don't worry, The NSDAP is working hard to pass laws that will keep these non-conformists quiet! If not, they will go to jail!]
The NSDAP is working hard to bring about Change.
The question is, who really is The "NSDAP?"
For that matter, who or what really is "Halliburton," "Blackcloud," and who is this conservative "Think-Tank" dude who's funding all of these Conservative-Christian groups?
And while I'm at it, who really is George Soros who started "MoveOn.org?" Who are these groups like "Apollo Alliance," "ACORN," "SEIU," "The TIDES Foundation?"
Who are these unelected people and organizations that seem to have more power then we, the voters, do?
Now, let's be honest... some people have already figured out that I didn't just make up The "NSDAP," - which in German stands for National Socialist German Workers' Party. NAZI for short. Just as I'm sure that in the beginning nobody suspected that the "NSDAP" was such a vial and evil bunch of thugs. Nobody can deny that they didn't cater some propaganda towards children to lay the groundwork for building future generations of The Third Reich.
Can't happen here? Really? Then let me ask you this...
Who are these special interest groups, some of whom are trying to pull the strings in Washington D.C. either too far to the left or too far to the right? Who are these special interest groups on the polar opposites of the political spectrum who seem to me to be having more power and influence than the people who voted for the politicians who are elected to "protect us." And now some of these groups are producing videos that teach one-sided ideology and are being played in class rooms?
I personally believe that one of the biggest crimes you can commit against a child (short of the obvious) is to brain wash them. The absolute worst type of brainwashing begins when the political indoctrination starts. A perfect example of this is one of our writers here on The Fedora Chronicles has (or by the time you read this, "had,") a young man living with his family and who was a supporter of Politician X. He had no idea why he was a supporter of Politician X, other then the fact that he was told he should by teachers in school. To be a good citizen, you have to be a proud supporter of Politician X. Why? Because if you don't support Politician X things will become complicated and hard? And you have to be a member of Politician X's political party for no other reason because that's the party of "smart, cool and popular people?"
Which brings me back to our original question: Do any one of us who is reading this rant know what their children are watching and listening to when they're at school, and who makes the materials? I didn't know the answer to this question when I was in school, I highly doubt my mother knew. Did any of us even have the time to take to even care?
Now, I don't pretend to have all the answers. I don't know what the conclusion to all of this is or what it should be. This is just a question that I think we should all be asking our teachers, principals, and school administrators. Are they showing films like "The Story Of Stuff?" that are made by organizations that we don't know much about? Who are making the videos that our children are watching, and what's their agenda?
And I don't know what to do. Do I ask everyone to call up their principals and ask point blank: What are kids watching in school? What videos are they watching? Am I advising all of you to request that your schools send home a list of the materials kids will be using in the weeks to come? Tell us what these materials are and who made them? Is that too hard to ask?
The answer to my own question is obvious - of course it's too much to ask. I'm nothing short of terrified to call up the Superintendent Of Schools in my area or the Principal of my sons' school and ask these questions in fear of being labeled a crank. I'm concerned about what this would mean to my sons and the future of their education.
I hope that in this charged political climate that they understand that I'm worried. I don't want either side of the political spectrum to use our schools to recruit the next generation of followers. Who knows who will be the next "NSDAP."
Should ANY political group be allowed to make propaganda movies to be shown in schools?