September 13, 2009

Even understanding that anything even remotely related to football in Texas takes on quasi-religious overtones, this might seem rather remarkably tone-deaf. But see, one involved a Texan and former president asking children to volunteer and the other involved a sitting president asking children to study hard and stay in school.

Get the difference? Nah, me neither. Unless it's because one of them is a colored fella?

ARLINGTON, Texas — Arlington Superintendent Jerry McCullough issued a statement Friday apologizing for how the district handled President Obama's live speech on Tuesday.

The decision not to show the speech live to school children became particularly controversial after it became known that the district had previous plans to bus about 500 fifth-graders to attend an event with former President George W. Bush. The event, which is scheduled later this month at the new Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, will be an announcement about a volunteer initiative for the 2011 Super Bowl.

"In retrospect, I can see how the district's decisions concerning these two events could be seen as favoring one event over another," McCullough said in his written statement. He later said, "I apologize that my decisions on behalf of the district have disappointed or hurt people."

The district allowed students to miss half a day of school on Tuesday if they wanted to watch the event live elsewhere and recorded the speech for later use. McCullough noted that he is encouraging teachers to use Obama's speech in their classrooms when and how they deem appropriate.

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