Obama socialism is coming to New York! Councilmember Eric Gioia is proposing that New York City high schools include a “community service” requirement for graduations. Under Gioia’s plan, juniors and seniors would have to spend 20 hours on Obama Youth activities such as “serving food at a soup kitchen or serving on a neighborhood revitalization board,” or else they won’t get a diploma. Gioia points out that other cities — not Russian cities, but cities right here in America — have even more onerous community service requirements: Seattle kids have to do 60 hours, and in Maryland — the Old Line State! (whatever that means) — they must submit to 75. (Our cause was lost, we now realize, when we allowed fluoride to be put in our water.)
Like all do-gooders, Gioia says this forced volunteerism is for the kids’ own good, and cites a Center for Information and Research on Civil Learning and Engagement study that says doing community service raises students’ average grades — we assume because the local commissar pressures teachers to raise them. First they come for the children, comrade, and next they will come for you. Meet us at the old red barn at dusk.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on January 19, 2009