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Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Richard Simmons goes to Washington

Forget Elle Woods from Legally Blonde 2. The new political activist for the day is Richard Simmons the zany Sweating to the Oldies excercise guru known for his, shall I say, less than masculine image. I was thinking about what I wanted to write today when, as always, I got my inspiration from The Today Show. (What would this blog be like without Al Roker and Meredith Viera?) Just a quick tip before I proceed, I learned that the primary way Richard Simmons (who used to be obese) keeps the weight off is to substitute a meal for a salad at least 4 times a week. I've been doing this lately, so it was nice to see somebody confirm it on national television.

According to Simmons, when the No Child Left Behind act was passed, the focus became exclusively on academic performance. Physical Education, unfortunately, was left behind. I have to admit that, during my high school years, I could have done without having to undress with a bunch of other guys in a sweaty locker room-but that's just me. I wasn't too proud of my concave. My guess is that those with a manlier physique probably secretly looked forward to it every day.Richard Simmons is introducing a new bill to restore P.E. as a national priority, thus saving it from being cut from the curriculum in schools across the nation.

I'd like to ask my readers what do you think about physical education being a national priority in our nation's education system? Jokes about Richard Simmons aside (cough....Pete....cough), do you support what he is doing? I'd like to hear what you think.

3 comments:

toby said...

i think if his goal is to get people educated about health at a young age, then that's fine. but to spend money on that when there's really not enough to begin with is kind of a waste.

also, people will still generally be unhealthy because of the way food is marketed towards people in the states. no exercise, sitting all day, a lot of sugar and fat. guess what, it may not matter that little johnny knows how to do sit-ups. he's gonna get fat when he gets a real job. i personally think his time would be better spent elsewhere. yeah, it's pretty cynical, but is it an exaggeration?

Pete said...

Hmmmm, I actually kind of disagree with Toby on this one. I think that America's got a huge problem on its hands with lack of physical activity as well as the unhealthy foods ( guilty in part on both accounts ). I think that if that is ever going to change, it will have to start by bringing up a generation that wasn't taught to worship the TV or computer screen like we were. As part of the first generation of "computer kids" I quite clearly remember being pushed in front of computers and encouraged to lose ourselves for hours in the marvel of human technological and informational advances. Sports and playing outside? Well that is for jocks (read-big dumb people), professionals (read- 1 in a million,not you) and those who don't care about the harmful effects of UV(read- crappy excuse because later we'll teach them to hop into a bed that saturates their bodies with it).
Yeah, recess is due back! Playing outside is due back! Our culture is on pace to erase that thing we used to call childhood in the name of technological advances and "intelligence".
I partially understand your argument here Toby, but your reasoning doesn't hold across the whole of education. How many of these kids will remember or for that matter need to know all of the states and capitals? How many of them will need to write in cursive, or for that matter write in any form on a regualr basis? How many times have you been asked who the commanding officers were at the battle of Shiloh?
Me personally, I think it's probably a little more important to teach these youngsters how to keep their bodies from going to absolute crap within 30 years than it is to do tesselations, but that's just my take.
All that being said, I want Richard Simmons to have no part in the education of America's children. There aren't enough counselors to make up for all of the therapy that our young men would be needing.
Pete

Aaron D. Taylor said...

It had to happen sometime. I actually side with Pete on this one. Sorry Toby, I think health and P.E. should be a priority for our nation's children. I also think Pete has a point when he says that athletes are often unfairly stereotyped.

I should know...with my superb athletic skills and all......(thought I could slip that one by)