Posted 10 years ago on Dec. 7, 2011, 3:29 p.m. EST by darkhound
This content is user submitted and not an official statement
Seventy years ago, as Pearl Harbor lay in ruin, President Franklin Roosevelt addressed a shocked nation from Washington. In a speech that lasted less than seven minutes, the president gravely described the "date which will live in infamy." Roosevelt predicted "always will our whole nation remember the character of the onslaught against us." I wonder if we're living up to that prediction.
According to a study of college seniors from elite universities, a third could not identify Germany, Italy and Japan as our World War II enemies. Almost two-thirds did not even know the Battle of the Bulge occurred during World War II.
This is not a matter of simply knowing dates. It's about our obligation to teach our young people about the pivotal moments in the defense of the free world — which still needs defending.
The Roman orator Cicero observed, "Not to know what happened before you were born is to remain forever a child." Are our young people developing into the adult citizens that a free society requires?
Colleges are failing to provide our students with the foundation they deserve and our country needs. A nationwide study of more than 1,000 colleges and universities, What Will They Learn? found 80 percent don't require students to take a foundational course in U.S. history.
Students can describe Occupy Wall Street in impassioned detail without knowing who occupied Europe in the 1940s, or why. Lady Macbeth has receded into near oblivion as Lady Gaga takes center stage.
But if we fail to educate our young people on the importance of freedom, our young people will remain — as Cicero said — children forever.