Do the liquid effect the pennies?

(Me getting on my soapbox)

Just a short history review, Benjamin Franklin was insightful and clever enough to write essays and intuitive political commentary under the pseudonym of Mrs. Silence Dogood at the age of sixteen.  Dr. W.E.B. DuBois was a correspondent for the New York Globe at the ripe age of fifteen.  T.S. Eliot had obtained his BA and MA from Harvard by the age of 21.  Children used to learn Latin and other romance languages in grade school.  In the past it was okay to challenge children academically.  Today we must make sure we don’t hurt the child’s feelings and make sure we don’t leave any one of them behind.

Why the lesson?  Well there is something that has been bothering me for some time now.  There seems to be a reoccuring event each year in our area, and many other areas around the country I am sure.  Every year there is a big news story and celebration for all of the area athletes as they sign their scholarships to various schools, including tough Division 1 schools.  My frustration is that there is never the same reception for someone in the area who receives a full ride on the basis of Mathematics or English or Physics, etc.  Could that possibly be that there aren’t ever any free rides based on academics anymore?

Kim was the valedictorian of our graduating class in 1998, and she sure as hell didn’t receive a full ride to A&M.  Jason graduated number three in our class and wasn’t offered any scholarships to any high profile division I schools.  Why?  Were their academic achievements not as important as Kid A who could run a 4.3 forty?  Not as important as the fact that Kid B could throw a runner out at second base better than anyone else in the school?  Don’t get me wrong, congratulations to all the people that did get scholarships; but, I feel that it truly is a sad day for our culture and our future if throwing a baseball becomes more important than inventing a new mechanized heart, or becoming a Poet Laureate, or finding an equation that unlocks the secrets to the universe.

However, the local news isn’t completely void of stories relishing the academic achievements of some students.  On Thursday evening Channel 6 news ran a story about a science fair in Port Arthur for elementary and middle school children.  The story was to commemorate the children on their job well done and their interests in science.  The story was so interesting that I felt compelled to take a picture of the television and share.

feb-2009-006

Lana noticed first and then I noticed and then we both laughed.  Again, congratulations to the students for actually partaking in something other than sports, but I believe this sheds a little bit of light on how bad our educational system has become.  Thanks to the bloated Department of Education our children don’t understand how to form basic sentences with basic English.  I also find it sad that the parents involved first missed the error and then the teacher missed it as well.  How could this have ever made it to tha fair?  Did no one notice the grammatically incorrect sentence dead center of the presentation?  But again, I suppose they at least deserve an A for effort.

The current state of our economy and our society and our country and our world reminds me more and more of the John Lennon song “Working Class Hero:”

“Keep you doped with religion and sex and TV, You think you’re so clever and classless and free”

Not that religion and sex and TV are bad things, but we all have to have a bit of perspective from time to time.  At work everyday the halls and the offices are filled with mindless chatter about American Idol or the Amazing Race or Kobe Bryant and his 51 points at MSG.  All the while we are steamrolling towards a depression and the state of our country is in peril.  But by all means, please someone tell me which girl Brett Michaels chose!

I am not excluded from the crowd of course.  I love football both American and European.  I love music!  I talk about sports and television.  I watch youtube videos.  But it seems as though the old adage “the dumbing down of America” is probably not far from the truth.  I am trying not to be completely self righteous because I know I am not perfect nor the smartest nor the most attentive.  All I’m saying is lets, as a society, start to show the same enthusiasm for academics as we do for athletics and reality TV.

(Me getting off of my soapbox)

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2 Responses to “Do the liquid effect the pennies?”

  1. I see that President Barack Obama wants everyone to learn a foreign language, but which one should it be?

    The British learn French, the Australians study Japanese, and the Americans prefer Spanish.Yet this leaves Mandarin Chinese out of the equation.

    Why not teach a common neutral non-national language, in all countries, in all schools, worldwide?

    An interesting video can be seen at http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-8837438938991452670.

    A glimpse of Esperanto can be seen at http://www.lernu.net

  2. You’re right, this kid’s crazy. I think the liquid do not affect the pennies.

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