Talk:The Pet Goat
Bush's do-nothing aside is anyone else as creeped out as I am by the rapid fire tapping-and-chanting method of teaching? Is this how elementary school kids are being taught today? Bizarre. Arthur Schlesinger Jr. wrote something about this in The Disuniting of America (circa early 1990s) that some extreme Afrocentrists were advocating that black children should be taught through "rhythm and rapping" because, well, black and white kids have naturally different brains and the ways of teaching white kids don't "work" with black kids, or something. (Which all just sounds to me like a PC version of
scientific pseudoscientific racism). Wasn't aware to what extent this was actually being tried but it frankly looks ridiculous and a little creepy. Secret Squirrel 07:29, 10 April 2008 (EDT)
What do people actually think he should have done
I think the most amazing thing about this whole thing is that people will criticize him and not even think about what he actually should have done. He read for seven minutes. There was not a damn thing he could have done in those seven minutes that would have had the slightest effect on the events that followed. Literally the only thing that would have changed was that the kids would have panicked. In fact, the teachers in the room said he handled it very well. Dave Kopel said it better:
"Fahrenheit mocks President Bush for continuing to read the book My Pet Goat to a classroom of elementary school children after he was told about the September 11 attacks. Actually, as reported in The New Yorker, the book was Reading Mastery 2, which contains an exercise called 'The Pet Goat.' The title of the book is not very important in itself, but the invented title of My Pet Goat makes it easier to ridicule Bush.
What Moore did not tell you:
Gwendolyn Tose’-Rigell, the principal of Emma E. Booker Elementary School, praised Bush’s action:
'I don’t think anyone could have handled it better.' 'What would it have served if he had jumped out of his chair and ran out of the room?'…
She said the video doesn’t convey all that was going on in the classroom, but Bush’s presence had a calming effect and
'helped us get through a very difficult day.'
'Sarasota principal defends Bush from ‘Fahrenheit 9/11’ portrayal,' Associated Press, June 24, 2004. Also, since the President knew he was on camera, it was reasonable to expect that if he had suddenly sped out of the room, his hasty movement would have been replayed incessantly on television; leaving the room quickly might have exacerbated the national mood of panic, even if Bush had excused himself calmly.
Moore does not offer any suggestion about what the President should have done during those seven minutes, rather than staying calm for the sake of the classroom and of the public. Nor does Moore point to any way that the September 11 events might have turned out better in even the slightest way if the President had acted differently. I agree with Lee Hamilton, the Vice-Chair of the September11 Commission and a former Democratic Representative from Indiana: 'Bush made the right decision in remaining calm, in not rushing out of the classroom.'"
- Well, I for one think he could easily have made a discreet "excuse me, I have a call coming in" and left the room to find out what the hell was going on. Panicking a room full of children is a total red herring. Getting to the radio and making sure that appropriate responses were being made matters - it's also a red herring that there was nothing he could do to change anything - that's hindsight in action, nothing more. At that time, with the situation unknown, there might have been any number of decisions he had to make very quickly. But thank you for your input. ħuman 01:15, 30 May 2009 (UTC)
- Hey, at least it shows he didn't have advance knowledge of the attack! But seriously, blargh. Imagine if he was told that his wife had been killed. Strictly speaking there might be nothing he could do in such a situation, but would we all be cool with his just staying in the room to "avoid a panic"? Lenoxus (talk) 23:51, 8 June 2013 (UTC)