It's not about race, it's about encouraging the kids

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By Angye Morrison

It seemed the whole country went nuts last week as it was announced that President Barack Obama would be visiting America’s classrooms via a live podcast on the White House Web site.

As I watched commentary on television about it and read online news sources and blogs, I saw both ends of the spectrum and beyond. Some said it was a poor use of taxpayer dollars and was being used to “spread President Obama’s socialist ideology.” Others were upset that parents were excluded, and that children could possibly be shown the message without parental consent. Others were concerned about the separation of church and state.

Folks, all Obama wanted to do was encourage kids to stay in school and do their best while there. There was no political agenda.

Perhaps the timing stunk – there are those that felt it was a well-timed attempt to garner support for Obama’s health care reform – but the message was still quite simple.

What upset me was I heard a couple of women at a local restaurant discussing it...and they made it all about race. These ladies said the only reason people were upset about it is because Obama is black. One of them even said, “They wouldn’t get upset about this if he was white.”

First of all, I’m not sure who “they” are, but this wasn’t about race. People gave Bush a hard time in 1991 when he did the same thing. The same issues were raised, with the main concern being the violation of separation of church and state.

I wasn’t disturbed by the fact that the president wanted to do this podcast. I was disturbed by the fact that it suddenly became about race.

Folks, get over it. Let’s move on.

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