Column: Staying in school for health care

By Gus Bode

Today, schools across the nation will be asked to air an address by President Obama that encourages students to finish school and set goals in their education.

This type of address to the nation’s school children should be celebrated and promoted, but this is not entirely the case. Some school districts will be opting out of showing the president’s address to students.


The far right has accused Obama of trying to indoctrinate school children with his education agenda.’

The chairman of the Florida Republican Party encouraged parents to take part in a ‘National Skip Day’ on the first day of school to avoid their children being shown the address.’

According to the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics, the dropout rate of students between the ages of 16 and 24 who don’t receive their GED or diploma is 8.7 percent.’

Political leaders should be encouraging students to stay in school and excel beyond high school and earn advanced degrees in science and math in order to compete in the global economy.

So instead of conservatives offering important ideas about the 46 million Americans without health care, they offer taking a day of education away from children.

Offering no plan to end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that have claimed over 5,100 American lives since 2003, they set back children.’

The country still awaits a solution in the six-nation talks with North Korea or the amount of our nation’s debt held by China, but conservatives instead hawk on the president for encouraging students to stay in school.’


Are these the people that have taken over the Republican Party? Is this where the loyal opposition stands?

To only deny children education while offering no loyal opposition plan, but hoping for failure.

Liberals do not escape blame either in this mess.’

The month of August has shown the Democratic Party to be lacking the unity and courage to address the real needs of health care.’ Liberal political leaders and organizations stood by while ultra right-wing groups mobilized against any health care reform.

When hope seemed lost, the AFL-CIO, one of the nation’s largest labor unions, announced it would not support any democratic candidate that voted against a public option as a part of the health care bill.

This was the first real leader that emerged to solidify the left.

The second may be the president; he will be addressing a joint session of Congress on the issue of health care Wednesday.’

It is reported the lines will be drawn and the president will lay out what he wants in health care reform and what he will not accept.

Will this be the backbone some liberals have been waiting for in this debate? Or will this be another opportunity for conservatives to attack an idea and offer no solutions themselves?

If there is one thing the American people want, it is a real and respectful debate on health care. Oh, and keeping their kids in school.

Cratic is a senior studying political science