Having spent nearly forty years of my life teaching in classrooms at the University of Kansas and elsewhere, it puzzles me that, on the one hand, Americans in general seem to believe in the virtues of a good education but, on the other hand, they ultimately also seem to distrust their teachers.
Barack Obama was a professor. He taught constitutional law at the University of Chicago Law School from 1992 to 2004. He was depicted by the media as the epitome of “cool” and “hip” on the campaign trail, through the inauguration, and through his first 100 days in the White House. But then, inevitably, the tides turned. Now the same pundits are saying that Obama is much “too cool” and “aloof.” Why does he seize every opportunity to give us “teachable moments” as though we’re still in school? He’s just “too professorial.”
Is there something really intrinsically wrong or untrustworthy about our teachers and professors? If so, let’s stop sending our kids to school, stop taking out student loans to go to college, stop funding universities and all higher institutions of learning. We don’t really need a president who is “too professorial” and makes us feel stupid. What we really want is a folksy leader whom we can chew tobacco and go to church with, hunt abortionists and four-legged animals with, go bowling or balling with, have a beer with.
Now is the time for the Republican Party to inherit the “cool” factor. They should get “with it” and start wooing all the women and other marginalized voters in this country by bringing back George W. Bush and Dick Cheney in drag. If “ignorance is bliss,” then who better to lead us in 2012 than faux females like Sarah Palin and Liz Cheney? Who wouldn’t want to have a drink with these two charming Airheads of State? Well, perhaps not a beer. Maybe an aperitif, or is that too European, too socialist, too liberal, too elitist, too professorial? Well, then, maybe a Screwdriver. At least the orange juice will provide some healthy Vitamin C while we’re getting screwed into alcoholic oblivion.