CNN's Martin: 'Insane' Objectors to Obama Speech to Kids Acting Childish
On Thursday's Campbell Brown program, CNN's Roland Martin berated the
critics of the accompanying lesson plan for President Obama's upcoming
speech to school kids, calling them "insane parents." He later
complimented Mr. Obama for the planned speech and made another insult:
"I'm glad we have a president who's willing to speak to children,
because maybe these same parents were acting like children."
Martin appeared with Florida Republican Party head Jim Greer just before the bottom of the 8 pm Eastern hour. After Greer explained his position, substitute anchor John Roberts turned to the CNN political analyst and asked, "Was there a little bit of problem there with the additional materials that were provided to go along with the President's speech?" He immediately replied on the offensive:
"No, it's not a problem. What you have is you have some insane parents who want to bring their ideology into the table....I remember, when I was in school, John, the former head of the Texas Republican Party, George Strake, came to my school. Thank God I didn't have some crazy parents saying- oh, no, I want my child to opt out of listening to George Strake because he might indoctrinate my child to become a Republican. This is about ideology. Why is it- I mean, I didn't see people sitting here saying when President George W. Bush went to go read to students- oh, I want to see what book he's reading. I want to opt- pull my kid out of the class because I'm a Democrat, he's a Republican. This is absolute nonsense."
Later, Roberts asked Martin, "Does he [Greer] have a point about this curriculum should not have been distributed?" The CNN analyst replied by continuing his offensive against the Republican leader and the critics of the initial lesson plan:
MARTIN: No. Jim doesn't have a point because what he's complaining about- that students are going to be writing letters to the President. Do you know how many children every day in classrooms, as a part of the process, actually write letters to the president- to the White House? There are kids they send packets every day to the White House from schools all across this country. This is politics, John. Jim wants to dance around it.
You know, people who are bringing their ideology who are saying, I don't want my child listening to this liberal Democratic president-
GREER: I've never said that-
MARTIN: When you don't have people complaining- John, your letter was ridiculous- talking about health care and the auto industry.
GREER: I have never said-
MARTIN: He's talking about kids staying in school. Your letter was incendiary-
GREER: That the President should not be allowed-
MARTIN: And it was on purpose.
GREER: I- I believe that the president, any president, should be allowed to talk to students on the first day of school to talk to them about staying in school and the benefits of an education. I believe that- this president included. But this President- this President made a decision-
MARTIN: You just said any parent should have the ability-
GREER: Let me finish, Roland. Roland, no- no, I haven't said anything about pulling kids out.
GREER: Others are saying that. I do believe- let me finish. I do believe that parents- parents, not the government, should decide what their children should be exposed to, and I would tell you in this day and age, I think the President has enough to do focusing on the economy and finding jobs for Americans than writing lesson plans out of the Oval Office.
MARTIN: Well, you know what?
GREER: That's what's concerning.
MARTIN: You know what, Jim? Considering the dropout rate in this country, and concerning so many kids don't even understand civics in the United States, I'm glad we have a president who's willing to speak to children, because maybe these same parents were acting like children- maybe they can't listen. Maybe the kids can also teach them a lesson on how to have some respect for the President of the United States.
Well, it's not surprising Martin is so uplifted by President Obama, as he was CNN's resident spokesman for the Democrat during the 2008 presidential campaign.
- Matthew Balan is a news analyst at the Media Research Center.