Obama plans to supply 99% of high school students with high-speed internet within five years
Back in the Dark Ages when I went to high school, we didn’t have computers to use, much less high-speed internet. We had to compose term papers on something called a typewriter. Those of you reading this who are under the age of 30 may have to Google the word typewriter.
Our version of Instant Messaging consisted of tearing out a sheet of notebook paper and writing on it, “Do you like me? Yes or no?” and passing it to our crush under the desk so the teacher didn’t see it. We couldn’t use Al Gore’s “invention”, the internet, until a few years later.
Now, of course there are all kinds of supercomputers and microchips smaller than the spitballs we shot in high school that contain more information than we ever thought possible. President Obama thinks that today’s high school students need access to the information available on the Internet to find jobs competitive in a global economy. To that end, he has proposed a program called ConnectED, which will provide 99% of high school students with high-speed internet within five years.
According to the White House, “… the United States was once a pioneer in connecting schools to the internet, we’re now falling behind while other nations move forward with aggressive investment in digital learning and technology education. In South Korea, for example, all schools have high-speed internet connections, and all teachers are trained in digital learning. Printed textbooks will be phased out by 2016.”
How does Obama plan to pay for this? By adding a modest fee of about $4 to your cell phone bill for the next three or four years. Yes, we are inundated with so many various fees and taxes and surcharges on our cell phone bills, but in this case, I wouldn’t mind paying it myself because the money would go to a very good cause.
I think providing access to high-speed internet to high school students is an excellent way to give students all the tools they will need to succeed. This is such a great idea that surely no one in Congress would even oppose it, right?
Republican Congressman Michael Grimm (R-NY) says our Founding Fathers are turning over in their graves because Obama dares to subvert the Constitution and make an end-run around Congress. I wonder how many times he complained when George W. Bush did the exact same thing, but I digress. Grimm needs to realize that the Obama ConnectED program does not need Congressional approval because the fee is actually levied by the Federal Communications Commission.
I might take Rep. Grimm more seriously when he cries foul if he actually had a reputation for substantive legislation that actually helped preserve the Constitution and our freedoms. His most important legislative initiative to date has been to write an amendment to the Farm Bill, along with Chris Gibson (R-NY) that according to them, would keep the price of olive oil stable and eliminate hidden taxes, which would cost New York jobs.
Personally, I find it appalling that Mr. Grimm chooses to be such an obstructionist to a policy that would help so many students.