When Fiorello LaGuardia was the mayor of New York City during a newspaper strike, he famously reached out directly to the children of New York City by reading the comics over the air each day of the strike.
A great mayor in many ways, so beloved that he served four terms, this simple, fatherly act earned him more love and respect than almost anything else he did.
A Republican, he was also remembered for this work to alleviate poverty, reforming welfare and improving housing for the poor.
Now we have a young President who plans to reach out directly to children again, to encourage them to study and work hard in school.
For this simple act he has earned the enmity of many Americans, who see his bypassing of the parents and school administrators as a despicable act of treason.
Now a wing of that same GOP party is castigating Barack Obama for trying to improve the attitudes of American youth toward education.
There is a basic difference between what LaGuardia did and what Obama wishes to do. LaGuardia was white and Obama is black.