Good morning and welcome to Summit Up, the world’s only daily column with a message for its high school readers: You, or someone very close to you, could very well be a mindless drone.We hope our youngins here in Summit Up Land are the exception, because we’re very troubled by the news we’ve just read. According to this USA Today story we discovered, a large number of America’s high school students are in training to be yes-men, push-overs and good little worker bees.The story cites a survey of just more than 112,000 teens on the subject of the press and newspaper freedom. The results show that 36 percent of these high schoolers think newspapers should get government approval before printing stories. Thirty-two percent also think the press has too much freedom.As you might expect, given our chosen vocation, this has us just a bit troubled.First of all, it means their civics teachers haven’t had them read the U.S. Constitution, or more accurately, the Bill of Rights. We’re referring to that pesky First Amendment, which allows us to say things like, “Students such as these will no doubt go far in life, such as from the fryer to the shake machine and back.”But sadder, the fact these kids think the government, or anyone for that matter, should get to approve what people say or write about them says to us that they don’t understand the difference between public relations/marketing and journalism. Since most of the media messages they’re bombarded with are the result of carefully crafted corporate sponsorship – from their ABC to their MTV – it really shouldn’t surprise us.These kids likely saw nothing wrong when, recently, it was revealed that those good people in the White House paid supposedly objective writers to hype the Bush agenda.We could go on and on about what this means for the future (and not just the future of our career, either), and how when we were their age, life seemed to be about sticking it to The Man, not turning around and taking it from Him, but we notice that even this tall horse we’re sitting on is getting restless with our prattling. So, let’s just leave it at this:Remember, kids, the day the government gets to approve everything the media says about it is also the day you no longer get to disagree with it. ***This Scum Alert!! Scum Alert!! was reported by our eyes in the field. The photog in question spotted a wonderful gent, with Colorado license plates on his Excursion, blow his nose in a tissue and throw it on the ground outside the Breck Brewery Monday. When our field agent brought to the man’s attention that we don’t appreciate that too much, the man responded by jumping in his SUV, flipping the bird and driving away.What offenders like this don’t realize is that our photographers happen to carry cameras and are quite adept at photographing fleeing license plates. We’ve forwarded this guy’s tags to the karma police for the appropriate punishment (which will, no doubt, involve a large amount of mucous).***Congrats! to Ryan and Corrie Burr of Frisco. Corrie gave birth to 7-pound, 1-ounce Braden Townsend Burr on Jan. 10. The family is now catching up on sleep so Ryan can get back to work teaching fourth grade at Dillon Valley Elementary and Corrie can get back to Spin Creative Studio and Sacred Tree in Breck.***Charlotte doesn’t know who found her skis but, boy, is she grateful. She stopped by in person to deliver this Angel Alert!! Angel Alert!!She says she had just finished competing in the downhill portion of the Senior Games at Keystone Tuesday, and when she got to the Frisco Nordic Center realized that her skis hadn’t made the trip with her – she’d set them by the car and drove off. Now concerned, she scrapped her first Nordic race, went back to Keystone, checked lost and found, and nothing. However, someone had turned them in at the gear shop where she works and she was reunited later that day. Whew!Here’s a few bonus karma points for that anonymous honest person.***It’s Thursday, or something. We don’t know about anything anymore, people. Remind us what we’re doing here at firstname.lastname@example.org, fax at (970) 668-0755 or just tell us to stop reading all that darn metaphysics on the voicemail at (970) 668-3998, ext. 237.We’re instigating the nihilists and the existentialists into a snowball fight …
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