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President Obama Includes Harry Potter Story in Education Speech

Posted by: Melissa
September 07, 2009, 10:12 PM

Tomorrow President Barack Obama will address the nation as it goes back to school; the pre-released text of his speech (which you can read here) includes remarks on the beginnings of Harry Potter as proof that not all great ideas or ventures are accepted as such to start:

But the truth is, being successful is hard. You won’t love every subject you study. You won’t click with every teacher. Not every homework assignment will seem completely relevant to your life right this minute. And you won’t necessarily succeed at everything the first time you try.
That’s OK.  Some of the most successful people in the world are the ones who’ve had the most failures. JK Rowling’s first Harry Potter book was rejected twelve times before it was finally published. Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team, and he lost hundreds of games and missed thousands of shots during his career. But he once said, "I have failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed." 
These people succeeded because they understand that you can’t let your failures define you – you have to let them teach you. You have to let them show you what to do differently next time. If you get in trouble, that doesn’t mean you’re a troublemaker, it means you need to try harder to behave. If you get a bad grade, that doesn’t mean you’re stupid, it just means you need to spend more time studying."

Pres. Obama will deliver the address at Wakefield High School in Arlington, Va., at 10 a.m. MDT; it will be live on the C-SPAN cable channel and streamed life at

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265 Points

Great speech! I really don’t understand what people are so upset about either? People sure do get flustered over little things these days.

Posted by sgreeter8888 on September 08, 2009, 06:20 PM report to moderator
1722 Points

I was in second period, Advanced Algerbra this morning, and my teacher turned it on. Very good speech!…. :o) I had to smile when he mentioned J.K. Rowling!

Posted by johndeeregirl12 on September 08, 2009, 06:40 PM report to moderator
2333 Points

I SAW IT!!!!! Once he said Jo’s name everyone looked at me in my whole school and I was like YES! HA….oh sorry!!!! It was amazing.

Posted by theREALGinnyWeasley on September 08, 2009, 06:41 PM report to moderator
88 Points

How dare President Obama tell students they have a responsibility to themselves and their country! I can see why some parents are outraged.

Seriously, ignorant people get a total FAIL. I thought the speech was very good and enlightening. What some of those parents need to realize is that not every child is so lucky to have parents that care so much about their education.

I personally believe that it is none of the parents business what children learn is school. School is run by the government thus by the president. And when they U.S. is lagging behind education compared to Europe and Japan it is the president’s business to encourage students to be all that they can be. And if the parents don’t like it then that is what home-schooling is for.

Posted by lowlizah on September 08, 2009, 06:44 PM report to moderator
580 Points

:D thats awesome.

Posted by weasleyalltheway(rrooaarr!) on September 08, 2009, 07:06 PM report to moderator
460 Points

A very nice and appropriate speech, I appreciated it.

Posted by qwill on September 08, 2009, 07:52 PM report to moderator
177 Points

My school got to watch it in school! and when he said J.K. Rowling’s name I gasped and my friend (who knows i love it) looked at me and laughed…. but i was so happy!!!!

Posted by HattFerg on September 08, 2009, 07:54 PM report to moderator
202 Points

I normally do not get involved in politics, but when I heard everyone making a big deal about this speech, I decided to give it a read. I find absolutely nothing wrong with this speech. I don’t think healthcare was even mentioned (except the part about washing your hands and staying home when you are sick). I would be proud to let my kids listen to this speech. It would remind them of the importance of school, and give them some positive role models to look up to. Kudos to Obama!

Posted by HPHealer on September 08, 2009, 08:27 PM report to moderator
1365 Points

Very Obama, that. Its pretty cool.

Posted by  HeartbreakDX  on September 08, 2009, 08:32 PM report to moderator
92 Points

this is the worst. he shouldnt use harry potter, my fav in one of his speaches! >:((

Posted by dobbyis_free on September 08, 2009, 09:10 PM report to moderator
192 Points

He isn’t my ideal president but glad he sees the wonder of HP and JKR :)

Posted by PadfootLover4ever on September 08, 2009, 09:34 PM report to moderator
64 Points

obama’s trying to brainwash kids.


Posted by Zoom on September 08, 2009, 09:46 PM report to moderator
61 Points

rejected 12 times? im glad it got accepted. i dont know how life would be without hp!

Posted by Portia Potter on September 08, 2009, 10:01 PM report to moderator
111 Points

I am sooooooooooooooooooo thrilled. Let the indoctrination begin!!!!!!!!

Posted by blockaderunner on September 08, 2009, 10:28 PM report to moderator
111 Points

I am sooooooooooooooooooo thrilled. Let the indoctrination begin!!!!!!!!

Posted by blockaderunner on September 08, 2009, 10:31 PM report to moderator
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