Friday, October 10, 2008

Suffer the Little Children
From Obama's website:
On Sunday, October 12, Washington State kids and families will parade around Seattle's Green Lake. "Kids for Obama Parade" will illustrate one of Barack Obama's core beliefs: Everyone's voice counts. Join us as Obama's youngest supporters rally their families and call for change, for a better America. At 2 pm, rain or shine, children and teens will express with words and drawings their hopes for the future of America on "wish flags" that will be mailed to Obama. The first 300 kids will be given a helium balloon, an expression of solidarity
Sure it sounds like a nice family event and maybe a good day for a picnic, but there's also something a tad creepy about this mixing of kids with the political desires of their adult guardians. As I linked to earlier a group of kids singing some paean to Obama, children are certainly a focus of the Community Organizer.

While it may be pertinent, we need not get into a historical review of activist political movements that have mobilized children in service of the ideology. However, it is vital to recognize the interest that Obama has shown in matters of education. Indeed, a key point about the Ayers-Obama relationship is not merely the fact that Obama chose to associate with the domestic terrorist and left wing hyper-radical Ayers, but that he and Ayers teamed up together to reform Chicago public schools, most notably with their administering of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge effort. Currently employed as a professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago Ayers professional interest is primarily focused toward the teaching and shaping of young minds, as his degrees attest:
1987 - Ed.D, Columbia University, Curriculum & Instruction
1987 - M.Ed, Teachers College, Columbia University, Early Childhood Education
1984 - M.Ed, Bank Street College, Early Childhood Education
1968 - B.A., University of Michigan, American Studies

Bill Ayers's interests include teaching for social justice, urban educational reform, narrative and interpretive research, children in trouble with the law, and related issues. See
Indeed, as his CV reveals, Ayers is working within the realm of public education to achieve his vision for political and societal transformation through the creation of education curriculae designed to achieve such ends. While this isn't the post to get into the revolutionary Marxism espoused by Antonio Gramsci, it is key to highlight one of Gramsci's chief contributions to the development of Marxism as a revolutionary movement was his exhortation to fellow radicals to engage their long march through the institutions. Gramsci understood that in order to affect revolution, one had to first work within the existing system in order to influence incremental systematic change. Once undertaken, such change over time would radically transform the system to one in line with Marxist ideology. Seen in this light, one begins to understand why the revolutionary radical Ayers would devote his life towards shaping the minds of young children - the transformation of society marches on one young mind at a time. Thus, families are rallied, and a solidarity takes shape around a revolutionary push for societal Change.

Win the children and you win the world.


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