The uproar regarding the President's speech to schoolchildren today was essentially much ado about nothing, from the very beginning. But then the uproar itself became the something, and we were no longer talking about nothing anymore.
All day as "bridgebldr" on the Oprah discussion forum, I have been nursing a thread I started discussing the President's speech. It was #1 in popularity on the front page of http://www.oprah.com all day today, just as it was yesterday (under Everyone's Talking About" on lower left).
What is interesting about this entire controversy is that it started out being a conversation about what really was a molehill, no matter how tall and darkly looming some chose to portray it. Who can really complain about the President encouraging students to take school seriously? And yet complain they did, but it wasn't about the molehill at all, it was about the mountain, that mountain of mythology which looms ever higher and darker, teeming with all sorts of nasty creatures, the constructs of minds filled with fear.
Not long ago I had the pleasure of watching a film that terrified me in my youth. I was not yet born when it was first made, but it found its way to reruns on many a random Sunday afternoon. "Creatures from the Id" lived in this film, those things our fears create, creatures which grow ever larger when gorged by the ever more creative fears of the masses.
If you choose to see a conspiracy, you will see a conspiracy. And even if some conspiracies are real, it is our fears which give them power. Creatures from the Id they do indeed become, tearing our world apart in very real ways.
I choose not to feed the beast. That planet is indeed forbidden to all of us, for that planet, our planet, will be no more, if we collectively choose to take that path. I choose the dawn, which is indeed breaking, despite the lingering darkness of the night.
And when it comes to the molehill, as a Mom, I for one appreciate the President taking time out of his busy schedule, not only today, but probably far more than he anticipated in recent days, to give a heartfelt, honest, encouraging message to our nation's most precious resource - our children.