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Parents protest decision not to air Obama's speech live on Tuesday

READ MORE: Parents protest decision not to air Obama's speech live on Tuesday

Kids in Brunswick County had the day off from school, but that didn't keep many parents and even some teachers from showing up at the school district offices Monday afternoon.
They were there to protest the decision not to air President Obama's speech in school tomorrow.

Other than one person, the Brunswick County citizens want Brunswick County school children to be able to watch President Obama's speech live during school hours on Tuesday.
"It is sending a horrible message to students because it says don't respect the President, don't respect the Commander in Chief, don't listen to him if he's not with your political party and that's very scary,” said Michael Burke, a retired professor.

Brewster Hewett is president of the Brunswick County NAACP.  He says this is not a race problem, it's a school board problem.  "You're sending the wrong message to these students and to the parents. You're telling these people what's going to happen before time.  They must be fortune tellers."

Not everyone at Monday’s protest was complaining.  There was one parent which supports the school board's decision to show the speech later this week if the parents deem the speech appropriate.
"I think people should have a choice in the matter, the parents that is.  I think we should always have the choice with anything political,” said Joe Lawson.

Carolyn Jenkins Blue wants her children to watch the speech live.  They will do that at home.   "My children will not be in school on Tuesday.  I hope nobody in this county will have their children attend school on Tuesday,” she said.

New Hanover County schools sent home a letter informing parents they can opt-out of having their children watch the speech.
Pender County also sent parents a letter allowing them to opt their children out.
Columbus County schools did not send a letter home, but will make the speech optional for kids.

Parents who want to read the transcript of the president's speech can do so online by clicking here.

Disclaimer: Comments posted on this, or any story are opinions of those people posting them, and not the views or opinions of WWAY NewsChannel 3, its management or employees. You can view our comment policy here.


Obama's Educational Speech

I am sick and tired of hearing that every time a decision is made where there are ANY persons of a minority involved and it isn't to their liking or belief it becomes a racial issue. Our Brunswick County School Board who are elected officials decided that it was for EVERYONE'S best interest not to bring his speech into the classroom. Call me racial if you must, but I back the school board's decision on this subject. Furthermore, if the NAACP is so stuck on what our youth should see and not see, why are they sponsoring a person such as Cindy Sheehan to speak at BCC?

I just watched the report of

I just watched the report of WWAY. A young lady asked Obama what his aspirations or goals were when he was her age. He replied that he just goofed off all through school. I thought the point of this speech was to impress on children to focus on the importance of education. So when we all tell our kids to do their homework, and they reply that Obama goofed off all during school and look where he is today.....

Lead, or at least read, by example

One would think that the President or his teleprompter writers could manage to use proper English grammar in a speech about education. Perhaps the self motivated top of the class could teach the President's target audience by simply pointing out the mistakes in English grammar in the President's speech. The speech is simply just more pathetic pandering.

I think people are getting

I think people are getting bent out of shape. Particularly by playing the race card. Ever since Obama became president, anytime there is conflict surrounding him there is a group yelling "race". I personally don't care for Obama. I didn't vote for him but I accepted that the majority of the country did. All I can do for the next four years is hope that he betters the country. But my daughter is almost 14 years old. I feel that she is old enough and ready to have opinions on a political stand point. Not that Obama's speech is going to have political undertones. But she can sit in class and listen and make decisions on her own as to the point he is trying to make. In regards to the Brunswick County School board, I didn't vote for any of them either. I feel you should have kids in the school system to sit on the school board. But I do respect their decision to postpone the airing of the speech. They were simply trying to avoid conflict...but unfortunately their intentions blew up in their face. Trust you kids. After all, you raised them. Face it...if they are in 5th grade or below, they're not going to find offense in the President speaking to them. Only the older grades may try to read into it...probably based on concern expressed at home about the speech.

"I want you to write me a letter..."

Just quoting George H.W. Bush in his adress to the school children of our nation in 1991. "I want you to write me a letter..." Where was the uproar then? "I'm not allowing my kids to watch the socialist, indoctrinating speech so I'm keeping them out of school..." Great message to send to your kids, about the public school, that is a social program. If you do not like social programs, send your kids to private school. If you do not like social programs, don't take the free vaccinne when a health epidemic rolls into town. If you do not like social programs, then turn the fireman away the next time your house is burning down. You should not keep your child out of school for anything other than fear for their safety. Are you going to keep them out of church too when the preacher tells them to do good unto others? Or is that too indoctrinating for your stubborn self? How dare that preacher force his priesthood agenda onto your child? Wake up people. The further the divide, the harder to close the gap. I am a republican and Regan conservative. If we ever want to win another presidential election, we have to stop coming off as so paranoid and fearful. You nut-jobs are ruining our party forever.

In reading the comments on

In reading the comments on here, I see that noone has read the previous story or the comments. When this speech was first brought about to the teachers and school admin. it was not a "pep talk" for children. The focus of this speech has changed several times since the first mention of it. The original plan sounded a little too close to indoctrination and school officials, teachers, and parents raised their concerns. So please, dont just catch the tail end of something and assume that all parents that have concerns are conservative wacko's. Do some research and decide for yourself and your children. That is what parents are suppose to do.

Looks like these parents

Looks like these parents need to learn to read and write themselves!

Partisan Politics

The sick irony of this whole thing is "politics". Globally Our children are falling farther behind. Promoting education and inspiring kids to stay in school is an honorable undertaking. But, because the speaker is a politician, the "other" side is automatically against it. If one of the Bushes were delivering the message, the response would be the same. We'd just be on different sides. Maybe our children should not hear the truth about the advantages of staying in school and getting an education. Maybe they'd be better off growing up to be bias like us.

I guess you'd say I'm a

I guess you'd say I'm a conservative, but moderate in my beliefs. I really don't understand the far right's mindset---pick your battles, don't fight over every little thing. From what I've heard President Obama's speech is not that different from Presidential pep talks in the past: "ask not what your country can do for you, etc." This, coupled with all the brouhahah about "death panels" (merely gov't employees that will deny claim after claim) is giving conservatives a bad name, sort of like George Bush did. If I could advise the right wingers out there I'd say 'worry about the important things like getting PROPER healthcare reform & tort reform. Nobody will take them seriously soon....

He did it to himself

Expect far more division. When his Secretary of Education releases lesson plans that ask childsren what they can do to "help the president," it clearly shows the true agenda. I'd expect that from a Fidel Castro or Hugo Chavez, not the President of the United States... ...but as long as Obama and his Democratic cronies believe in looting the productive members of society to pay for more entitlements, you can anticipate far more (and far more intense) division. Many will not go lightly into that dark night....

Help The President

Could it be that the President simply wanted school-aged children to think they are important enough to help the Commander-in-Chief? That he is not a Supreme Being, but just a man who may want input from his constituents? That he is someone who will listen? And where were you when GW was "looting the productive members of society" to ensnare us in two non-winnable wars and allowing the rape of Wall Street and the housing industry? Barrack didn't bring this country to it's knees. Maybe you and your kind did. You are right about "(far more intense) division", I have had it with all of you extremists, right or left. You have ruined this once-great nation, and don't try to blame it on one person who has been President for only 8 months.

If you'd care to look back over older messages....'d see that I was griping about his lousy performance as Commander-in-Chief. I discussed the Principles of War and specifically mentioned that he and Rumsfeld were obviously "honor graduates at the Johnson-MacNamara School of Military Ineptitude." BTW, those wars were only unwinnable because like his daddy, he had no stomach for the slaughter. You can read my analysis of his stopping the Marines at first Fallujah and calling off the Army Rangers when they were within an hour of killing or capturing Muqtada al Sadr. You can also bet that our new policy of not using air power, but instead breaking contact with the enemy when non-combatants are present, will accomplish nothing but the further wasting of American lives while not destroying the enemy and his will to fight. As far as the rape of Wall Street and the housing industry, I'd suggest that you do some research into laws such as the Community Redevelopment Act (Carter) and various other laws passed under the Clinton Administration that basically forced banks to make substandard loans to people without any hope of repaying. Consider me an extremist if you wish, but my extremism is based entirely upon the U.S. Constitution.

Brunswick County School Board Decision

Brunswick County must have the most ignorant school board in the region. The lesson they are teaching their children is shameful. Was it because the White House started out by saying that he was going to ask children to write to him about what they could do to help him? Even George W H Bush had school children write letters suggesting ways to help his presidency.


Wow! Are you serious? Honestly, do you think my son is thinking about what political party he his, is only 6 years old my son has plenty of time to think about that. I do know one thing, if bush was having a speech it would be no problem. Man this world is not getting any better. These parents need to grow up themselves they are the ones who are going to send mixed signals to their own children.


What is wrong with people these days? Honestly this kind of behavior is sickening!!! Allowing the President to speak to your kids is offensive? You should be ashamed of yourselves. What kind of example are you setting for your kids? I'm sorry, but whine radio has gone to far. This isn't about free speech anymore this is about mental censorship. Something aught to be done about any one who advocates keeping children home tomorrow.

America is Free!

It's not about the speech for me. I see on here that My school district sent out "opt out" letters, I never got one. Our school district has a call system that calls us for every bake sale, PTA meeting/fund raiser, pippin performance etc. Then they surely could have sent out calls informing me that this was happening. I and I alone decide what my child watches, and I do not agree that it should be shown in school. That being said, I have no objection to it being shown prime time where he can watch it at home. Our troops are fighting for our Freedom, I believe that the way this speech is being delivered is going against our rights as parents. I voted for Obama however, No one tells me what my child will do. Last I checked America was still FREE!

Holy crap people. Get a

Holy crap people. Get a life- why this could cause this much tension and strife in our community is unbeknownst to me. The president is merely giving our children a pep talk. Telling them that in order to succeed they must work hard- he is a perfect example of someone who rose above his circumstance and is much more qualified to talk to that poopulation of students that a president that was given aa silver platter with the world on it. Give him a break. What Obama needs now is a country that will lift him up in prayer so that he makes the right choices regarding the state of our union. Not a bunch of quarreling high schoolers hating on the fact that their pick was rejected from homecoming court. He is the president and he deserves a little respect. He has hardly been given a chance. He can't even talk to kids about the importance of staying in school without parents flipping out. What kind of example is that?

ahh.. the irony

You are keeping your child out of school while the President talks about how important it is to go to school... I understand your point, but perhaps you should have a home school lesson on irony as well?

What's wrong with

What's wrong with encouraging our children to succed in academics. Remember No Child Left Behind? I don't believe it should be drawn to be another person's misconception, but the purity in the message.

i dont get why people wont

i dont get why people wont go through with this. Its like the children's parent dont want their children to hear about how important it is to get a education, this has got to be a stupid protest over something so important, i agree with the decision to show the speech to all kids so they could learn. If we want this nation to be a better place in the future, then why are we holding the "future leaders of america" back. Sometimes parents can be a bad influence on their children.

where was all this concern

Where is all this concern with the troops leaving daily to go fight a war, people loosing their jobs, the funds that are cut from our schools. our medical insurance. LET the man tell our kids to stay in school . Which what us as parents should be telling and teaching our kids to do. Show some respect. He isn't playing mind freak and all kids are going to fall under the spell of CHANGE.Move on

Questions for the members of the school board

It saddens me on the rapid increase in the division of our country. As an engineer and geophysics researcher, I stress the importance of "working together" in all matters or as I like to say "Synergism". I have included the definition of Synergism below: Synergism, in general, may be defined as two or more agents working together to produce a result not obtainable by any of the agents independently. The word synergy or synergism comes from two Greek words: erg meaning "to work", and syn meaning "together"; hence, synergism is a "working together." Continual disagreement only increases division. From a factual standpoint, if one were to research how great civilizations of the past collapsed, surely one would note they all shared one common denominator: "division leads to demise" Questions: 1. What is our school board's decision on not airing the presidential broadcast teaching our children? Would it not be teaching them principles of disagreement and division? 2. What positive outcome is being created for the teachers, parents, and children based on the school board's action of not broadcasting a speech from the president of our country until they deem it appropriate? I would very much like to hear a response from any member of the school board regarding the above questions.

Your coverage of this event

Your coverage of this event was poor at best. Biased editing made it appear that Brunswick citizens who object to the Board's decsion to ban Obama's speech are exclusively black folk. That is/was not the case. Those assembled in protest were black and white, together, in equal proportions. The Brunswick County Democratic Party stands as one with the NAACP in opposing the extreme rightwing ideologues who banned the speech in a way that adjacent counties refused to do.


I don't think we should show the President's speech to the children at school. If the parents want the children want to watch it, then show it on TV for them to watch. My 3 will attend school in Brunswick but will not watch it at school. It should be parents right not to have their kids forced to watch it. Thank you....

Obama Speech to School Children

I think it would be better if Brunswick County made watching the speech optional, based on parental permission, similar to the other adjacent counties. However, the President helped create this controversy due to his original format of questions for students and also by not making public the actual content of his speech until just recently.

The man speaks with a forked

The man speaks with a forked tongue. I don't trust that his message will only be about our kids staying in school. Let him give his speach in the evening so I can watch it with my children and monitor the content. I don't trust him.

Whatever!!!! You shouldn't

Whatever!!!! You shouldn't have trusted Bush, with his weapons of mass destruction lies!!! More than enough of our young men and women have died b/c of his SPEECHES. But I guess that's o.k. Have you ever heard the cliche' " It takes a village to raise a child"? I hope you heard the SPEECH today!!! The president was sending a message to our kids to encourage them, to let them know that education is important. I want to be the first to thank you for showing many people that this is a true fact. Speech is spelled S-P-E-E-C-H, NOT S-P-E-A-C-H! Next time, do what my 7 year old does whenever he writes. Proofread and Edit!

Obama = Forked tongue...uh?

People like this scare me. Did the person who wrote this see the speech...was it with a forked tongue?

Obama's speech not shown in Brunswick Co. schools

Sorry folks, you can't have it both ways. It's ok to keep religion out of the schools because of different beliefs, but you have a problem with not letting them air Obama, one of the most controversial politicians we've ever had? Record it and show it to them when they get home........