A school district felt compelled to issue an apology for showing students the "I Pledge" video at an assembly. In case you haven't caught it, it's the public service announcement featuring stars like Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore pledging to do something good for the community. Can't really argue with that, right? Wrong. The video also includes some stars pledging their support to President Obama. And that, of course, set some parents off.
They viewed the video as "political propaganda." To that end, it did include Obama campaign images. Plus, Red Hot Chili Peppers' frontman Anthony Kiedis says, "I pledge to be of service to Barack Obama" and Demi chimes, "I pledge to be a servant to our president."
The parents who attended the assembly apparantly freaked out, forcing the school principal to issue a statement profusely apologizing. But this entire situation was completely overblown. The middle school administrators played the video as a part of its Peace One Day event. The over-arching message of this video has nothing to do with Obama or politics. In it, stars demonstrated the small ways you can be involved and make the world a better place. It's about encouraging kids to get involved and care about something other than themselves. What could be more important than that in this day and age?
With so much technology, it's possible for kids to never really engage in the world outside of the classroom. This is encouraging them to get off their butts and be involved -- even if that means just smiling at everyone you meet, helping an elderly lady in your neighborhood, or volunteering for a charity drive. Now that message has gotten muddled in this controversy. Why can’t people look past their political leanings and look at what the school is trying to accomplish -- getting the kids to care about their world?
Take a look at the video:
Do you think the parents were right to be outraged?