Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Meet the candidates: Barack Obama

We wanted to give our readers a chance to learn a little about the various presidential candidates. We'll present you with a snippet of a speech by each candidate.

The first candidate we will look at is the Democratic front-runner, Sen. Barack Obama (D, IL). The following is an excerpt of a speech Senator Obama gave in Manchester, NH on November 20, 2007.

I've visited many schools and spoken to many teachers and students throughout my two decades of ##### service, but one I'll always remember is my visit to Dodge Elementary School in Chicago just a few years ago.

I was talking with a young ##### there, and I asked her what she saw as the biggest ##### facing her students. She gave me an answer that I had never heard before. She spoke about what she called "##### Kids Syndrome" - the tendency to explain away the shortcomings and failures of our ##### system by saying that "these kids can't #####" or "these kids don't want to #####" or "these kids are just too ##### behind." And after awhile, "##### kids" become somebody else's #####.

And this ##### looked at me and said, "When I hear that ##### it drives me nuts. They're not ˜##### kids.' They're our #####. All of them."

She's absolutely right. The ##### child in Manchester or Nashua whose parents can't find or afford a quality pre-school that we know would make him more likely to #### in school, and ##### better, and ##### later in life - he is our child.

The little ##### in rural South Carolina or the South Side of Chicago whose school is ##### falling down around her, and can't afford ##### textbooks, and can't attract new teachers because it can't afford to pay them a ##### salary - she is our child.

The teenager in ##### Boston who needs more ##### and better ####ing to compete for the #### jobs as the teenager in Bangalore or Beijing - he is our child.

These ##### are our children. Their future is our future. And it's time we understood that their ##### is our responsibility. All of us.

This is a defining moment for our #####. Revolutions in communications and technology have created a ##### economy of high-tech, high-wage jobs that can be ##### anywhere there's an internet connection - an economy where the most valuable skill you can sell is your #####.

##### is now the currency of the Information Age. It's no longer just a pathway to ##### and ##### - it's a pre-requisite. There simply aren't as many jobs today that can support a family where only a high school degree is required. And if you don't have that degree, there are even fewer jobs available that can keep you out of poverty.

In this kind of economy, countries who out-#### us today will out-#### us tomorrow. Already, China is graduating eight times as many ##### as we are. By twelfth grade, our children score lower on ##### and ##### tests than most other kids in the world. And we now have one of the highest high school ##### rates of any industrialized nation in the world.

Well I do not accept this future for America. I do not accept an America where we do nothing about six million students who are ####ing below their grade level - an America where sixty percent of African-American fourth graders aren't even ####ing at the basic level.

I do not accept an America where we do nothing about the fact that half of all teenagers are unable to understand basic ##### - where nearly nine in ten African-American and Latino eighth graders are not proficient in #####. I do not accept an America where elementary school kids are only getting an average of twenty-five minutes of ##### each day when we know that over 80% of the fastest-growing jobs require a knowledge base in ##### and #####.

This kind of America is ###### unacceptable for our children. It's economically untenable for our future. And it's not who we are as a country.

1 comments:

  1. Jane Says:

    I had no idea Obama had such a potty mouth! :)