WASHINGTON, Va. – If you want to mesmerize small children and make them believe everything you’re saying, just grab a guitar and deliver your philosophy in the form of music.
Soft sounds and attractive rhymes ring true with kids, regardless of the content or message. And with musicians being so glorified by popular culture, kids have a tendency to believe that if it comes in a song, the message must be profound and correct.
What a brilliant strategy for left-wing educators across the nation who have openly declared their intent to convert public school students into young liberals.
The indoctrination-through-music effort comes courtesy of a Washington, Virginia-based non-profit called “Kid Pan Alley.”
Musicians who belong to the group visit elementary schools for a reported $1,200 per day, supposedly helping children learn to write their own musical lyrics. The fee comes from school budgets, of course, and schools are encouraged to seek government grants to cover the cost.
When the “workshop” is finished, they help the kids perform “their” songs for classmates in school assemblies.
The lyrics these kids come up with are amazingly adult in their political content, and startlingly liberal for very small children who generally have little coherent understanding of politics at all.
Here’s one example of a song supposedly written last fall by third-graders at Woodbrook Elementary in Charlottesville, Virginia.
“Some people have it all, but they don’t think they have enough; They want more money, a faster ride; They’re not content, never satisfied; Yes, they are part of the 1 percent, I used to be part of the 1 percent; I worked all the time, never saw my family, couldn’t make life rhyme.
“Though I lost my yacht and plane, didn’t need that extra stuff; Could have been much worse, you don’t need to be first; Cause I’ve got my friends, here by my side; Don’t need it all, I’m happy to be part of the 99.”
Wow. Who would have guessed that third-graders were so in tune with the anti-capitalistic message of the Occupy movement?
If we didn’t know better, we might suspect that the musicians who run the workshops are teaching the kids about the glory of the Occupy effort and suggesting a few lyrics here and there.
But they wouldn’t stoop low enough to brainwash innocent, trusting minds – would they?
Not so sweet and innocent
If you visit the “Kid Pan Alley” website, you’re going to get the sugar-coated version of what these people are up to.
You’ll hear background recordings of adults and children singing about making the best of a rainy day, or having to go to school. How sweet and age-appropriate.
The words on the cover page are equally innocent.
“Imagine what it is like to be a child writing a song in their classroom with a professional songwriter,” the website says. “You’d be changed forever. You’d have learned about teamwork, the value of everyone’s ideas, embracing diversity and collaboration through the group songwriting process.
“You might start writing songs to express your feelings rather than striking out in anger. You’d feel really listened to and proud of what you had done. And just imagine that this is the most fun you ever had in school. Well, this is what Kid Pan Alley is doing in schools throughout the country … .”
How touching, and how misleading. These people seem to be unapologetic left-wingers who are seeking to produce a whole new generation of anti-American radicals through music. To prove that point, all you have to do is look at more lyrics from songs supposedly written by children in their workshops.
The following is an excerpt from a song called “Inauguration“:
“The world is as cold as the white snow, the birds have been wondering if it’s safe to return; We’ve all been hibernating for too long; but now we’ve got the power – we’re no longer cowards; We’ll have a brand new song.
“Now we’re ready to shed our old skin; we’re ready for a brand new day; Ready for peace – ready for spring; Ready for freedom – let freedom ring;
“Welcome Barack Obama, he’ll save the day – hip hip hooray.
“Barack Obama, hip hip hooray, Barack Obama, hip hip hooray, Barack Obama, hip hip hooray. Barack Obama!”
Nothing political or one-sided about that. Kids naturally want to honor their president, right?
It’s funny, though, because we haven’t come across any Kid Pan Alley songs praising the virtues of Ronald Reagan, or even Mitt Romney, for that matter. We’re sure at least some of the kids in these workshops come from more conservative homes. Maybe those kids just aren’t very talented lyricists.
This is brainwashing, ‘no doubt, no doubt’
Obviously some level-headed observers have called Kid Pan Alley out on the carpet for this blatant attempt to create a juvenile wing of the Democratic Party. The following comment came from a Virginia resident who read the lyrics to the “99 percent” song quoted above:
“Even after a cursory glance at the lyrics of this song, I find it hard to believe that an eight-year-old would have something to say about the (economic) bubble bursting,” the woman said. “I know it says on their website that the ideas come from kids, but I would question how much input the facilitator had to do with writing the song.”
We’ll take it a step further. We think the “facilitator” wrote the song, and used his charm and musical chords to easily convince the children to endorse it.
Amazingly, officials from Kid Pan Alley defend what they’re doing and dare to suggest that they have no political motive.
“Kid Pan Alley does not promote nor condone any personal or political agenda,” Pat Rogers, the executive director of the group, was quoted as saying. “Our sole mission has been and continues to be to inspire and empower children to work together to become creators of their own music and to rekindle creativity as a core value in education.”
Even less believable are the words of naïve educators who have hosted Kid Pan Alley musicians in their schools.
“There is no question in my mind that Kid Pan Alley is firmly committed to teaching kids, and they are not interested in a political agenda,” Phil Giaramita, a spokesman for a school that hosted the group, was quoted as saying. “We’re confident that Kid Pan Alley has set the right boundaries and are committed to enforcing that.”
Do they think we’re stupid? Do they really expect anyone to believe that elementary kids are coming up with left-wing protest songs by themselves?
Consider the lyrics of another song, addressing American foreign policy, supposedly written by small children. We’re guessing the lyrics are directed toward George W. Bush, and perhaps even President Obama, who continues to frustrate his liberal base by pursuing a military strategy in the Middle East:
“This isn’t Pearl Harbor, this isn’t World War II; This is just a disagreement, and I disagree with you; Why pick a fight, isn’t that the easy way out? In the end everyone loses, no doubt.
“Sometimes we fight just to be in a fight; but in the end it makes the whole world poor.
“Sometimes we fight to be holy; sometimes we fight to be free, sometimes we fight because we’re blinded by might; Let’s open our eyes and look inside and finally see.
“Why pick a fight; isn’t that the easy way out? In the end everybody loses, no doubt, no doubt, no doubt, no doubt, no doubt, no doubt.”
The money source tells the story
If there remains any doubt about the political motives of Kid Pan Alley, just consider one source of its funding. It’s the Virginia-based William and Mary Greve Foundation, which also funds a group called the American Society For Muslim Achievement, headed by a 9/11 conspiracy theorist, according to writer J. Christian Adams.
The Greve Foundation is headed by John Kiser III, author of a book titled “Communist Entrepreneurs: Unknown Innovators in the Global Economy.”
We doubt the Greve Foundation supports Kid Pan Alley because of the balanced political message it shares with children. It supports Kid Pan Alley because it produces songs for children like the following:
“If I could change one thing, I would change all the rules; Freedom would be free. I’d be my own boss no matter what the cost.
“What if kids could vote, it’s love that sets us free; When everyone has what they needed, there would be no more war. Yeah, that’s what kids are for.”
There’s nothing wrong with exposing students, even elementary kids, to the issues of the day. In a society that’s becoming progressively ignorant about its government, children should be encouraged to become more knowledgeable and engaged.
But responsible educators will make sure children are exposed to various points of view, so they can go home, discuss various topics with their parents, and begin to develop their own opinions.
Responsible parents should make sure that teachers aren’t shoving their narrow political philosophies down kids’ throats, even through seemingly harmless venues like musical workshops.
Remember, the vast majority of leaders in the public education establishment are very liberal. They will let this type of thing continue until parents and taxpayers demand otherwise.