Education: I Did It My Way
Self-loving Obama tells the people that we need more money for education. He doesn't consider that any positive results of this won't kick in for years and that we are currently sixteen trillion dollars in debt. Blowing money on schools is always a crowd-pleaser, except when the impoverished public wakes up and realizes that our educational system has failed and that it is sucking up money from our destitute country like an adolescent sponge.
The problem is not so much the failed educational system. The problem is that the family structure has broken down. The students walk to school with knapsacks of home-failure before they even arrive. It's easier to play with a computer or watch television. Many students have a single mom, and a few are confronting the undiagnosed problem of same-sex parents. Anything goes in this society, and so education goes along with it.
When I was sixteen, my parents moved me from East Meadow to Great Neck because they felt the educational system would do me good. Great Neck North was considered one of the best high schools in the United States. But for all their reputation and expense, I was a distracted boy walking. I paid no attention at school. You could have spent a billion dollars on every scholarly method on me, and I wouldn't have listened.
I was going through a troubled adolescence, and I was more interested in fighting, dating, and getting high. If Obama had been president back then, I would have laughed at his faux concern. I would have said to him, "Shove your education where the sun don't shine. You're just trying to use me to pretend that you're doing something. Don't paint me with your political brush." And then I would have huffed some glue.
What did it take to turn me around? It wasn't a bureaucrat. I had to hit bottom and have nowhere to go but up. One day in the hall at school, I ran into Jimmy C., a jock and a good student who usually didn't even notice that I existed. He surprised me when he addressed me: "You know Dave, everybody's got you wrong. They think you're stupid, but you're really at least average."
I didn't know whether to hit him or hug him. I suddenly realized that he was right, that everyone viewed me as a dope. And his compliment that I was average was insulting. For no reason, I saw myself as a genius. But Jimmy made me see that no one else could regard me as a genius because I behaved like a jerk. I had a C average. I was a moron.
I realized at that moment that I wanted to prove that I wasn't what I appeared. I decided that I would study hard. I wanted others to see me as I saw me -- brilliant, not stupid. From that day I told all my friends I couldn't hang out with them anymore. Previously, I was one of the cool kids. I shocked them with my retreat from the in-crowd. I wanted to be a nerdy student, not a playboy teenager who drove around in his daddy's Jaguar-XKE.
I started teaching myself how to study. I went from zero hours of studying a night to five. I started to make dents in my ignorance. And I became a good student, a brilliant student, just by the dint of my own efforts, not by a grant from an Obama-type or a school's efforts. Studying comes from the heart, from dedication; it is discouraged by Obama-type phony rhetoricians. Kids don't want bull shoveled in their own backyards.
I didn't need my teachers. I taught myself and then handed in papers that received As. The taxpayers didn't have to spend a fortune on me. I could have done this alone in an igloo while ignoring the ice floes around me.
At Hunter College I had a 3.78 cum. At CUNY Graduate Center, a portion of my doctoral dissertation was published, and my index was higher than my record as an undergraduate. I went on to publish articles, poems, and books. My life story, The King of White-Collar Boxing, was published in 2012.
Obama likes to say, "If you've got a business, you didn't build that." I'd like to say back to Obama, "If I got an education, you didn't study for me." Quit throwing away money on educational bluster that fattens the wallets of union teachers and start developing small businesses so that we can have an immediate effect on the economy. Don't use education as another monetary disaster like Affordable Health Care.
Maybe Obama had people encourage him and pay for his colleges. I didn't. I went to free city schools. I was the stupid, angry teenager who turned himself around when no one cared. Except maybe Jimmy C. Not that he cared -- not that he ever said another word to me -- but he was part of the accidental miracle of my creating myself out of anxious mud.
A man is a man because he wants to be a man; he is not an Obama collectivistic production.
Thank God there was no Obama around when I was a boy in Great Neck. He would have ruined the economy and caused my parents to go broke. Which they did anyhow, but at least they did it on their own.
Does Obama even understand the expression "I did it on my own"? Frank Sinatra would walk away from him while singing, "I did it my way."