Does Clarence Sasser have anything to teach Minnesota school kids?
The Minnesota House of Representatives thinks he does.
Sasser, a medic drafted into service in Vietnam, is one of the lesson plans created by the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation to try to teach kids that, perhaps, there are lessons from Medal of Honor recipients that kids need to hear.
The House voted 129-3 to pass a bill that encourages schools that voluntarily provide character development education to include Congressional Medal of Honor history and values in the curriculum.
Here’s a suggested lesson plan based on Mr. Sasser.
Rep. Bob Detter, R-Forest Lake, said the program is being used in Robbinsdale and Columbia Heights school districts, and 59 districts have participated in training, according to Session Daily.
Rep. Alice Hausman (DFL-St. Paul), Rep. Kim Norton (DFL-Rochester), and Rep. Tina Liebling (DFL-Rochester) voted against the measure.
Should people be worried it could be a recruiting tool in disguise, similar to the marketing employed by area sports teams? Maybe.
On the other hand, keep in mind the lesson from Medal of Honor recipient Sal Giunta from his 2014 visit to Eagan.
“War is awful. War is terrible,” he said. “It’s disgusting, and gross, and brutal, and it should always be the last resort, and yet we’ve been doing it for 14 years.”
The foundation says the concepts of the lessons are courage, commitment, sacrifice, integrity, citizenship, and patriotism.
That last one is the most difficult to define since the country struggles constantly to define what it means to be patriotic, a debate that often splits along political affiliations.
They don’t give Medals of Honor to people who protest wars.