By Candace Coleman, 17, Marymount HS
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Bush has done an amazing job in office regarding the welfare and protection of the American people. In his State of the Union Address, the president highlighted current priorities of his administration, Congress, and their commitments to stimulating the economy, preparing for a possible war in Iraq and improving education.

Equal Taxes for the Masses

President Bush has shown Americans his leadership qualities by creating a new economic program that will not only help individuals but it will also stimulate the American economy. Too many people have certain pre-conceived notions about Bush and his "tax cuts for the rich." However, their statements couldn’t be farther from the truth. In the president’s address, he proposed income tax reductions and tax exemptions for all Americans. This means American taxpayers will be keeping more of their own money.

In Bush’s stimulus plan, he will give tax relief to the poor who will be able to put food on the table for their families instead of bureaucrats. The rich will invest in more stocks, bonds and mutual funds bringing Wall Street back to its prosperity. Middle class people will be able to create more small businesses from the money they save from their tax breaks. In turn, their small businesses will enable more job opportunities for the less fortunate and jobless.

People from each class are important to the country’s economic stronghold, and deserve to keep every hard-earned penny.
Almost 92 percent of Americans pay some form of an income tax to the federal government, which is taken out of their salaries. Since Bill Clinton’s presidency during the mid-1990s the United States’ upper-middle class and wealthy Americans have handed almost 50 percent of their income to the Internal Revenue Service (I.R.S). Clinton practically centered his economic policy on the notion of redistributing of wealth in America. Thankfully, Bush is not a socialist, and has managed to create an economic program that will help Americans from every social class.

Blood for Freedom!

Bush reiterated the importance of going to war with Iraq. Almost 12 years ago, Saddam Hussein found himself in a shallow corner facing the prospect of being the "last casualty" in a war that he had started and lost. International law groups have given Hussein 12 years to fully disarm of his weapons of mass destruction (WMDs), including nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. But obviously, Hussein still doesn’t get it. Perhaps I can explain why this is a "just war."

For the last 12 years Iraq has posed an imminent danger to American security, life, liberty and to the freedom of our allies. Hussein not only has killed hundreds of thousands of people in his own region, but has refused the United Nations’ demand that he show Iraq has destroyed these weapons. President Bush gave evidence that Hussein has the materials to produce more than 25,000 liters of anthrax, 38,000 liters of botulinum toxin, and 500 tons of serin, mustard gas and VX nerve agent. President Bush said, "The only possible use he [Hussein] could have for those weapons is to dominate, intimidate or attack."

President Bush illustrated the importance of taking this guy out: "If Saddam Hussein does not fully disarm for the safety of our people and for the peace of the world, we [United States] will lead a coalition to disarm him."

It might be trendy to stand at the corners of Hollywood and Vine and chant the "No Blood for Oil” mantra but this kind of cowardly misrepresentation is undermining the Bush administration’s attempts to make peace.
The President established Saddam’s possible connections with Al Qaeda an international terrorist organization led by Osama Bin Laden and the 9/11 hijackers. He showed that Saddam could easily pass weapons along to other terrorists.

Our president finds it intolerable that Iraq is still a threat to American security, life and the freedom of our allies. It is the right of America to protect her interests and freedoms at home and abroad. Freedom is the cornerstone of American life, and should be preserved with all our will.

No Child Left Behind

For the year, the federal government under Bush’s administration has released a substantial education package designed to help every child learn and excel. Since the 20th century, education in America is seen as the center of democracy, and the president has an obligation to extend the opportunity to every American.

Since 2001 when the No Child Left Behind Act was established, the administration committed itself to promoting accountability of every public school in America to insure improvement in student achievement, and progress in student proficiency on national tests. These reforms include the school voucher program which enables impoverished students by giving them the opportunity to attend private or parochial schools using money from the federal government. There is no reason why any student should be relegated to an institution that is failing and underachieving simply because the student is poor. America’s educational opportunities should enable all students to acquire a decent education that can ultimately impact the success they will have after graduation.