Political children’s book brainwashes the young

Conservative Katharine DeBrecht, author of “Help! Mom! Radicals are Ruining my Country,” portrays Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi as “an elitist, tiara-donning radical out of touch with everyday Americans” in her new book. Is this really the kind of thing we want our children to be reading?

The book is a true children’s book, with bright illustrations and child-friendly vocabulary and structure. An amateur estimation by this writer suggests that the book’s target age is 4 to 7. Think about that; reading about politics at that age. This is well before the preteen years, the time when children form their earliest political beliefs. What gives DeBrecht the right to indoctrinate children at ages 4 to 7? Why would she do this?

There is that word: indoctrinate. Just a few short months ago, conservatives cried bloody murder when President Barack Obama spoke to children in schools around the country. All the fuss was about a portion of the lesson plan that went with the speech asking kids about how they can help the president improve America. That portion of the lesson plan was removed after the outcry.

And yet here we are, with a book targeted to children in kindergarten to second grade that portrays the Speaker of the House as an “elitist.” So who is doing the indoctrinating now? This isn’t about what is said to children; this is about who talks to the children. In DeBrecht’s mind, conservatives are being patriotic and pro-American when they talk to children about their dreams and how they can succeed in life, but God forbid that people with a D beside their name talk to children because of the mass conspiracy to indoctrinate the young with their liberal ideas. Never mind the fact that every president since Ronald Reagan has talked to schoolchildren at one time or another. If they are a Democrat, they are clearly unworthy to talk to schoolchildren.

For goodness sake, DeBrecht, the president was telling children that they could do anything in life if they applied and believed in themselves. Isn’t that the kind of rah-rah message parents give to their children at that age? Clearly DeBrecht’s time and energy would be better spent writing a book about how children can succeed in life free from any political message. But alas, she thinks indoctrinating children against the president and his party is a better use of her talent.

To use an old cliche, “leave the kids out of this.” Childhood is one of the few times in life with minimal worries. At that age, children don’t care who the president is or why he is bad. They care about riding bikes and playing with dolls. DeBrecht, please let children be children and not pawns in your campaign against the president. Have the decency to come out with your hatred for the president and his party like all your other conservative friends, and leave children alone.

Patrick Yoxall is a freshman history major from Auburn, Ala.