Friday, September 25, 2009

We must resume teaching civics


I have tried for years to find those words that could make you feel the dread I feel about one fact of American life: we do not teach civics in our public schools anymore.

When you really think about that sentence, you begin to understand the selfishness, greed, denial, decay and the belief that the people are the audience, not the performance of America.

America is a miracle and the whole world knows it except Americans because we don't teach it.

Do you think that the rest of the 21st century will be some kind of cakewalk? No you don't. But our kids aren't taught to balance a checkbook, how to hammer a nail, to cook or sew, or what due process is or why we have it. So how easy would it be to change it to "selective" due process.

I am trying to save my country. My line in the sand is refusing to think, "There's nothing I can do." I can see something that others don't: how diminished we've become to one another.

We are raising up the cheap, the profit-only values.

We punish only the nickel and dimers, and we never demand accountability.

There is 100 percent agreement today that when a public official speaks, he or she is inauthentic.

You can fix Wall Street and the banks, and they will come back with subtler thievery.

You can keep complaining about taxes too high or low, instead of thinking about what we need. If you do, you can watch potholes bloom and see heroes — cops, teachers and fireman — living beneath the poverty line.

We want our kids to be devoted to the nation; what reasons do we give them if we don't tell our tale? That we're south of Canada?

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