Yes, it's been a while. I'm in NYC, travelling. The United States is perhaps not as bad as you'd expect from reading about it, but I still did view what was apparently an American citizen (he was in the US-passports line at immigration) get fingerprinted and photographed coming into the country. It sends a little chill down your spine when you see that sort of thing; it feels a bit like you're going into East Germany or something.
But reading about this I can only say, "wow." I'm not even big on the whole "huge amount of respect for the President" thing, but you'd think it would seem reasonable that students would be allowed to see and evaluate a statement from the leader of the country that they live in. This is the most shocking thing to me: I'd not really realised until this point how certain groups are really trying to shut down discussion more than anything else. Ironically enough, I've not seen anything like this since totalitarian communism was a major idea in the world.
Were I leading the White House press-release folks, I'd just put out a statement saying that it's very sad that certain parents don't want their children to hear a "work hard and stay in school" message. It seems so simple. But I suppose that that's why I'm not a publicist.