September 18 2009
Carrie L. Lukas
The Independent Women's Forum is partnering with Bill Cosby in a frank discussion about parenting, health, and education in America.The About Our Children town hall meeting will be broadcast live on MSNBC Sunday from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. Eastern. Independent Women's Forum president Michelle Bernard will moderate the event, which she organized along with Bill Cosby. The town hall will focus on issues affecting poor Americans of all races and creeds. (See earlier article)
Carrie Lukas is the vice president for policy and economics with the Independent Women's Forum.
"I think too often a political debate or a public debate focuses on policies in Washington and what politicians are going to do for us. And more and more we should be recognizing that politicians, even the best of them, there is only so much they can do," she contends. "When it comes to individual children, it's the responsibility first and foremost of parents and then all of us as individuals to make positive influence in young people's lives."
When it comes to education, Lukas says parents need to realize that they are their child's best educators and they need to become active in their local schools. Themes of the event will include education and "how a good education is critical to helping individuals live more prosperous lives and achieve the American dream." Health discussions "will examine human behavior: anger and depression, healthy eating, and how poor diets can affect the learning ability and growth of a child."
Parenting discussions will "examine what it means to be a responsible parent, disciplining your child without feeling guilty, becoming involved in your community and your child's school, and other voluntary efforts that can change your life."
"[T]here is an element of tough talk to it. Dr. Cosby is really inspiring -- if you read his book Come On, People, it's very inspiring and telling stories of those throughout the country who've been able to pull themselves up, give their families better lives, make positive change in their lives," she adds. "So, sure, there may be a little bit of a tough love message to it, but really I think this is a real message of encouragement."
The town hall event featuring Bill Cosby will also be simulcast on MSNBC's website.