Obama to kids who want to be president: beware of Facebook

September 8, 2009

President Barack Obama advised children who want to be president to beware of Facebook.

“I want everybody here to be careful about what you post on Facebook,” Obama told a group of ninth graders before making a back-to-school speech at Wakefield High School in Virginia.

“Because in the YouTube age, whatever you do, it will be pulled up again later somewhere in your life.  And when you’re young, you make mistakes and you do some stupid stuff. ”

Sounds like some wise advice, but whether the kids will listen to it is another story… high school without letting loose on Facebook? NVRGH (Never Gonna Happen for those unfamiliar with the lingo).

OBAMA/Critics since last week have been screaming that Obama’s education speech was only a ploy to advance his political agenda. A handful of them greeted his motorcade with signs like”Mr. President, Stay Away From Our Kids,” and “Children Serve God, Not Obama.”

Obama did not raise healthcare arguments in his speech, but it came up during his conversation with the ninth graders. He said he can’t prevent someone from getting sick but maybe he can “make sure that they’ve got insurance so that when they do get sick, they’re going to get some help.”

One student asked why the United States lacked universal healthcare when 36 other countries, including Iraq and Afghanistan, have it. Obama replied that he’s asking Congress that very question.

Whether this was a jab at Congress, we’ll leave you to judge, but he said there were a lot of politicians “who all they’re thinking about is just, ‘How do I get reelected?’ and so that they actually never get anything done.”

He told the ninth graders, usually in the 14-year-old age range, “when I was your age, I’ve got to say that I was a little bit of a goof-off” and mainly interested in getting on the varsity basketball team and having fun.

And who would the president most like to have dinner with who is dead or alive? Gandhi.

“Now it would probably be a really small meal,” Obama said to laughter. “He didn’t eat a lot.”

But Gandhi inspired American civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Obama said. “So if it hadn’t been for the nonviolent movement in India, you might not have seen the same nonviolent movement for civil rights here in the United States.”

Obama deployed administration officials to talk to kids about the importance of education, including Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Office of Management and Budget Director Peter Orszag, and Housing Secretary Shaun Donovan.

We’re wondering how many times Sasha and Malia have heard the “do your homework” lecture…

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Photo credit: Reuters/Jonathan Ernst (Obama at Wakefield High School)


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Thanks to President Obama for caring enough about our kids to give some words of encouragement as they begin the journey of another year of school. I can’t think of a better way to send a positive message at a negative time to the most important people in the world; our children. Shame on any parents, school systems and governments who did not want their children to hear Obama’s speech. Just because many of you have hidden motives behind some of the things you do, does not mean every one does. Our president deserves more respect than was shown him today. He always takes the high road and many of you could take a page out of his book.

Posted by Keely James | Report as abusive

I fully agree the President deserved much more respect than he got in all this hoopla. He does take the high and enlightened road. he is articulate, and his whole family is an example of how to get out of challenging econonomic situations and into wonderful lives. he shouldn’t be allowed to address schoolchildren? That embarrassed me – many of us apparently don’t deserve him…but hopefuly he will raise you up as well.

Posted by Jack | Report as abusive


45.7 Million Uninsured Breakdown
Illegal Immigrants = 9.3 million
Medicad Undercount = 6.4 million
Medicaid/SCHIP Eligible = 4.3 million
Childless Adults = 5.0 million
Over 300% of Poverty = 10.1 million
Remaining Uninsured = 10.6 million

Medicad Undercount – People who are on one of two government health insurance programs, Medicaid or S-CHIP, but mistakenly (intentionally or not) tell the Census taker that they are uninsured.

Medicaid/SCHIP Eligible – Eligible for free or heavily subsidized government health insurance (again, either Medcaid or SCHIP), but have not signed up.

Childless Adults – Adults between ages 18 and 34 and without kids.

Over 300% of Poverty – Do not fit into any of the above categories, and they have incomes more than 3X the poverty level.

Remaining Uninsured – U.S. citizens, with income below 300% of poverty, not on or eligible for a taxpayer-subsidized health insurance program, and not a childless adult between age 18 and 34.


Posted by xinunus | Report as abusive