Upon the education of the people of this country the fate of this country depends.
I have another one of those really full days ahead. Breakfast and lunch meetings as well as a Butler University lecture tonight. I am looking forward to seeing the campus as our whole town is really celebrating Butler Universities making the NCAA Championships Basketball Final Four that will be held right here in Indianapolis next weekend. Since my mind will be elsewhere the rest of today I’ll fall back on a Daily from yesteryear.
Here is the Daily I sent on March 30, 2005
I had lunch with one of my favorite University Professors the other day. Most of our hour and a half together was spent in analyzing and solving the world’s problems. About mid-way through our lunch the conversation drifted into a discussion of the youth of today and to some extent what she is seeing in her students. We both expressed our personal concern that too many young people today either feel disenfranchised or believe that being concerned about national and world affairs is a waste of time. I find this to be tragic as these are the citizens of tomorrow, they are the educated people upon who we will depend to provide us a supportive society in which we can grow old gracefully.
While we had no answers, we speculated that to some extent we have led this generation to see success as winning a good job and then making lots of money. We seem to have instilled the idea that it is not important to enrich their lives through life-long learning, taking responsibility for staying abreast of current events, and allowing themselves to enjoy the great rewards that culture has to offer. I even understand that some University Curriculum Committees are cutting back or even eliminating required courses that do not directly apply to the acquisition of marketable skills, I think of this as curricula de-enrichment.
Years ago one of Indianapolis’ most respected leaders told me how disappointed he was that his son had chosen to get an undergraduate engineering degree. My friend felt that his son would have been much better off taking a liberal arts degree first so that he would be able to see, understand, and enjoy all the world had to offer. My friend had the credentials to make such judgments as he had been the President of a Major Bank, the President of a Major Sports franchise, the Chairman of a number of corporations, and one of our town’s greatest citizens.
I think we owe our youth the opportunity to see and touch ideas and things that would enrich their lives; to not give them that chance is stealing from them the opportunity to discover very best life has to offer. If we don’t provide our youth with a well rounded education we will pay the price in the years ahead.
It is very nearly impossible… to become an educated person in a country so distrustful of the independent mind.
What their mom said:
COLUMBUS‘ MOTHER: "I don’t care what you’ve discovered, you still could have written!"
MICHELANGELO’S MOTHER: "Can’t you paint on walls like other children? Do you have any idea how hard it is to get that stuff off the ceiling?"
NAPOLEON’S MOTHER: "All right, if you aren’t hiding your report card inside your jacket, take your hand out of there and show me."
ABRAHAM LINCOLN’S MOTHER: "Again with the stovepipe hat? Can’t you just wear a baseball cap like the other kids?"
MARY’S MOTHER: "I’m not upset that your lamb followed you to school, but I would like to know how he got a better grade than you."
ALBERT EINSTEIN’S MOTHER: "But it’s your senior picture. Can’t you do something about your hair? OY! Styling gel, mousse, something…?"
GEORGE WASHINGTON’S MOTHER: "The next time I catch you throwing money across the Potomac, you can kiss your allowance good-bye!"
THOMAS EDISON’S MOTHER: "Of course I’m proud that you invented the electric light bulb. Now turn it off and get to bed!"
PAUL REVERE’S MOTHER: "I don’t care where you think you have to go, young man, midnight is past your bedtime."
I can’t imagine a person becoming a success who doesn’t give this game of life everything he’s got.
Here is one of the reasons I like the Irish so much.
A kind word never broke anyone’s mouth.
A dog owns nothing, yet is seldom dissatisfied.
It is better to be born lucky than rich.
A lie travels farther than the truth.
An old broom knows the dirty corners best.
Put silk on a goat, and it’s still a goat.
A friend’s eye is a good mirror.
It’s no use carrying an umbrella if your shoes are leaking.
God is good, but never dance in a small boat.
Even a small thorn causes festering.
Marriages are all happy its having breakfast together that causes all the trouble.
Every dog is brave on his own doorstep.
You’ll never plow a field by turning it over in your mind.
Drink is the curse of the land. It makes you fight with your neighbor. It makes you shoot at your landlord and it makes you miss him.
You’ve got to do your own growing, no matter how tall your grandfather was.
It was a May-December marriage, and as the old man climbed in to bed for the first time with his new bride, he asked, "Did your mother tell you what to do on your wedding night?"
"Yes," she cooed, kissing him lightly, "She told me everything."
"Good," said the elderly gentleman as he turned out the light, "because I’ve forgotten."
"I was thrown out of college for cheating on the metaphysics exam; I looked into the soul of the boy next to me."
While walking through a parking lot, I tripped and fell flat on my face.
As I was lying there, a woman stopped her car and called out, "Are you hurt?" "No, I’m fine," I said, touched by her concern. "Oh, good," she continued. "So will you be vacating your parking space now?"
If money won’t make you happy, you won’t like poverty either.
She said that while visiting her son during his freshman year, she was shocked by the mess in his room: clothes, books, and rubbish lay everywhere. Later, over dinner, she tried to touch on the informal versus formal dress codes that life after college might require. Her son, however, shared his own firmly held dress code guidelines:
1. Informal: socks not required
2. Semiformal: two socks required
3. Formal: both socks must match
You can’t change the past, but you can ruin the present by worrying over the future.
Maureen said: At my granddaughter’s wedding, the DJ polled the guests to see who had been married longest. It turned out to be my husband and I. The DJ asked us, "What advice would you give to the newly-married couple?"
I said, "The three most important words in a marriage are, ‘You’re probably right.’"
Everyone then looked at my husband. He said, "She’s probably right."
Education would be so much more effective if its purpose were to ensure that by the time they leave school every boy and girl should know how much they don’t know, and be imbued with a lifelong desire to know it.
Sir William Haley
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
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The editor is somewhat senile.
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