By this time, Senator Barack Obama is now President Barack Obama. Around the beginning of the school year, President Obama took the time to try and inspire American schoolchildren, the next generation of workers, innovators and leaders. Whatever your opinion of President Obama, I was impressed with his desire to be personable and direct with middle schoolers. Not that a speech from the President of the U.S. will definitely motivate the unmotivated, but to me it was nice to know he cares.
But, of course, the knee-jerk reaction of the paranoid Fox News crowd is to cry out "Indoctrination!" "Socialist brain-washing!" Hey now. It's not every day that your son or daughter gets to sit down and have a chat with the most powerful man in the world. (And, at least recently, it's not every day that the most powerful man in the world has conversational skills* more advanced than that of your son or daughter.) This is a man elected by more than half of the population, so it's safe to assume that he's not an extremist on the fringe. That's more Hollywood stuff. In reality, we have an articulate and intelligent president who endured more trials than most to get to where he is today. He probably has some wisdom to share, and we probably shouldn't deny him the privilege to share it. (If he does say something just a little too far to the left, then discuss it with your children at home. That's your job.)
Some parents I know weren't freaking out over some conspiracy theory, but were still concerned. They argued that they should be allowed to see a speech transcript prior to the speech. I think it's a valid argument, but if it doesn't happen (and it didn't), it's not the end of the world.
*(Number 3 is especially applicable.)