28 August 2008 09:20 AM

Election Time Continued...

by Dr. Rick
Just imagine.

Imagine a presidential campaign where candidates inspire us to value learning rather than joking about their own poor academic records in an adolescent bid to be seen as someone voters “would like to have a beer with.”

Imagine a presidential campaign where candidates exhort us to read more, learn more, and excel in intellectual pursuits. Why do presidents usually leave topics like that to First Ladies? First Ladies bring prestige and awareness, sure, but the president brings power.

Imagine a presidential campaign where candidates address how education helps us to become better people, not just helps us get better jobs. Where they cheer on success in school, encourage a culture of learning, work to enhance the status of teachers so the best and brightest choose the profession and then find it fulfilling enough to stay in it.

Imagine a president who sets the education bar high, who makes literate comments that motivate us to reach for our library cards, who displays his intellectual curiosity, who challenges our brains and elevates our hearts, who understands the role model he is, who recognizes that we’re hungry for inspiration and eager to be proud of ourselves again.

Imagine the impact he could have on parents who know they are the most important factor in their children’s school success and who, because of his words, will find new and creative roles to play in schools, despite the challenges of 21st century parenting.

Imagine the impact on the mass media and popular culture that today put such high stock on violence, “reality,” and stupidity.

Candidates, you’ve asked us to hope, to work for change. It’s my heartfelt hope that you start this conversation, that you give us the opportunity and the vocabulary to address an issue that many see as less pressing than the economy, the war in Iraq, or the price of oil but that any thinking person knows in his heart is just as relevant and crucial to the survival of our nation – maybe even more so in the long run.


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