The Last 24™











This days edition of The Last 24™

























Experience the White House Kitchen Garden!



Ed. note: This is cross-posted on the Let’s Move blog. See the original post here.


In keeping with the President and First Lady’s commitment to open the People’s House to as many people as possible, tours of the White House Kitchen Garden are back and now available to community organizations as well as school groups with an interest in gardening and healthy eating. Come smell the beautiful, brightly colored fruits and vegetables in the Kitchen Garden, including herbs grown from Thomas Jefferson’s garden at Monticello; see the vibrant flowers in the Pollinator Garden; and hear the bees buzzing around the White House Beehive.


Nestled on the White House South Lawn, the Kitchen Garden is home to different fruits, vegetables, and herbs each growing season. The First Lady planted the White House Kitchen Garden in 2009 to initiate a national conversation around the health and wellbeing of our nation and to serve as an inspiration for schools and community groups across the country to plant gardens of their own. Now nearly five years later, the Kitchen Garden is as healthy as ever and is an example of just how easy it is to plant a garden in your backyard, school, or community space.


So if you haven’t already started your own garden, click here to check out the Let’s Move! Gardening Guide, which has all the information you need to get planting!


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In Case You Missed It: LGBT Pride at the White House



Yesterday, for the sixth time since taking office, President Obama joined national, state, and local community leaders, business leaders, grassroots activists, elected officials, and others for an event celebrating Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Pride Month at the White House.


With the First Lady by his side, the President spoke about the tremendous progress we have made during the course of his Administration — from repealing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” to implementing the Affordable Care Act with important protections for LGBT people — and restated his commitment to taking executive action on behalf of LGBT workers:


The majority of Fortune 500 companies already have nondiscrimination policies to protect their employees because it’s the right thing to do and because many say it helps to retain and attract the best talent. And I agree. So if Congress won’t act, I will. I have directed my staff to prepare an executive order for my signature that prohibits discrimination by federal contractors on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.



Read More.



July 1st, 2014: Videos of the Day




7/1/14: White House Press Briefing




Beaten and shot in Syria


Published on Jul 2, 2014

CNN’s Christiane Amanpour speaks with journalist Anthony Loyd, who was kidnapped near Aleppo in May.




Farmed Fish That’s Better Than Wild?




Is Silicon Vally Sexist? Tinder Sexual Harassment Lawsuit


Published on Jul 1, 2014

“Tinder, the popular hookup and dating app, is being sued for sexual harassment and .


The company’s co-founder and former vice president of marketing Whitney Wolfe has filed a lawsuit on Monday, alleging her fellow senior executives engaged in “atrocious sexual harassment and sex discrimination” against her.


In the lawsuit, Wolfe described Chief Marketing Officer Justin Mateen as “verbally controlling and abusive.” She accused him of repeatedly calling her a “slut” and a “whore,” including in front of CEO Sean Rad.”




Is Israel Preparing New Military Offensive Against Gaza?


Published on Jul 1, 2014

TRNN Middle East Correspondent Yousef Al-Helou says that Israel is punishing Gaza despite that no evidence shows Hamas is responsible the deaths of the Israeli teenagers.




US Wealth Gap Doubles In Last 10 Years


Published on Jul 1, 2014

A new study shows that inequality in America has been steadily increasing from the 1980′s onward, and has even doubled from 2003 to 2013.




PBS NewsHour – Tuesday July 1, 2014


Published on Jul 1, 2014

On tonight’s program, Iraq lawmakers walk out of parliament in a standoff over their leadership and demonstrators flood Hong Kong demanding democracy. Fred de Sam Lazaro travels to Vietnam to investigate human trafficking, Jeffrey Brown uncovers Facebook’s massive user experiment and our roundtable of Marcia Coyle, Erin Murphy and Neal Katyal consider the year at the Supreme Court.




Israel mourns kidnapped, murdered teens.


Published on Jul 1, 2014

Manny Halberstam, cousin of slain teen Naftali Frankel details his character, life and family.




Obama, Booker joint fundraiser held in Chicago today




WASHINGTON — Senate Democrats Dick Durbin of Illinois and Cory Booker of New Jersey, both up for re-election this November, hit Chicago on Tuesday for a joint fundraising reception at John Barleycorn’s, 149 W. Kinzie.

The price points:

$500 individual ticket.

To raise or donate:

$1,000 to be designated a “sponsor”

$2,500 to be a “host”

$5,000 to be a “chair.”

The cash haul will be evenly divided between the Durbin and the Booker main Senate campaign funds.




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It’s A Twitter Storm™ That’s Raining Videos™









It’s A Twitter Storm™ That Is Raining Videos™





































My new favorite anti gun ad……Listen to the accidental shooting statistics after the video.





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Bring Back Our Girls And Stop Boko Haram NOW.








Olawale Akinnibi joins others to support the Coalition of Concerned Nigerians in South Florida during a rally to show support for national and international action to free the girls recently kidnapped from a high school in North eastern Nigeria on May 17, 2014, in Miami, Florida. Approximately 200 school girls remain imprisoned by Boko Haram since the April 14th incident. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Olawale Akinnibi joins others to support the Coalition of Concerned Nigerians in South Florida during a rally to show support for national and international action to free the girls recently kidnapped from a high school in North eastern Nigeria on May 17, 2014, in Miami, Florida. Approximately 200 school girls remain imprisoned by Boko Haram since the April 14th incident. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)


From The Grioby :


Boko Haram reportedly carries out new kidnappings in Nigeria


In an ugly turn of events, it has been reported that the terrorist Islamic sect Boko Haram has struck again.


Though details are still sketchy, reports say 60 girls and women and 31 boys were abducted in recent days in the Damboa district of Borno state in northeast Nigeria.


According to Nigerian national broadcaster NTA, sources claim 30 people were brutally massacred during the attacks in Kummabza village and surrounding areas.


Still, Nigerian federal government officials have yet to confirm the reports of these latest attacks by suspected Boko Haram militants.


Nonetheless, if confirmed, this will come as a huge blow to the government. President Goodluck Jonathan is struggling to regain credibility ever since Boko Haram’s audacious kidnapping of more than 200 girls from a school in Chibok two months ago.


“Concerned and enlightened Nigerians are worried and disenchanted with the whole saga,” said Ibrahim M. Abdullahi, the Nigerian lawyer who started the#BringBackOurGirls viral campaign.


“More appalling is the government’s handling of the whole issue, even with technical assistance from the US, UK, France, China, Israel and neighboring countries.”


“Jonathan’s government is concerned more about re-election. It does not have any comprehensive framework to end this insurgency,” he adds.


“Even if it has, it does not have the political will to implement it. It sees the insurgency not as a security issue but a political issue.”


“Until Jonathan’s government realizes that it has a constitutional duty to protect all Nigerians and that Boko Haram is not a political challenge but a security one, it will not be able to resolve this issue.”


Still, when the missing girls story came to the forefront (fueled by the #BringBackOurGirls Twitter hashtag) there was a mass social media uproar, with global leaders and celebrities joining the campaign.


In recent weeks, however, international attention has waned.


“Unfortunately, many online social justice campaigns tend to be cyclical and short-lived,” said Jamie Triplin, a Washington, D.C.-based digital communications consultant.


“It is easy for the online community to forget about hashtag campaigns when it is no longer listed as a trending topic by social media channels such as Twitter. Organizations and individuals should not lose sight of offline activities that can have greater long-term effects.”


Abdullahi acknowledges that the #BringBackOurGirls hashtag is no longer trending across the social networking sites. But he says the search for the missing girls is still an ongoing crisis in Nigeria, with mainstream media giving the story prominence alongside daily demonstrations across the country.


“There is a 3 hours protest sit-in the capital Abuja every day in respect of the #BringBackOurGirls campaign, and the same happens in the neighboring city of Keffi in Nassarawa State,” he says. “There is a weekly sit-in protest in Lagos and other cities as well.”


Meanwhile, the Nigerian government still claims to know where the missing schoolgirls are located but continues to hold off on a military-style rescue attempt over fears this would result in the deaths of many of the hostages.


Boko Haram has demanded the release of prisoners in exchange for the hostages. Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan has ruled out negotiating with terrorists.


Thank you The Grio & by 





#BiringbackOurGirls – New Pictures and Names of kidnapped Chibok Girls



Here are the faces and names of some of the school girls kidnapped on April 14th in the Chibok community in Borno state by Boko Haram men. Photos released by ThisDay Newspaper.




UN Special Envoy for Global Education, and former UK Prime Minister, who was in Nigeria this week shares his experience. Find the article he wrote about the Chibok girls below..



“I was shown these pictures after visiting Nigeria this week. I met the leader of the community council in Chibok, the town from which the girls were abducted.



Slowly and with tears in his eyes, he flicked through a file in which he had recorded the names and photographs of the girls.



Not even the police and Army have managed to compile such detail he has amassed from talking to the parents of the kidnapped teenagers.



The file has 185 pages — one for every girl. Each page has a photograph, and beside each passport-sized picture some stark facts — the girl’s name, her school grade and the date of abduction. For the other 19 abducted girls, he has yet to locate photographs. He will.



The community leader and the girls’ families have given permission for their names and photographs to be put into the public domain so the world is reminded of the missing girls. He is being helped to publicize this by Arise TV chief Nduka Obaigbena.



There is also a file on the 53 girls who escaped by running for their lives from their Boko Haram kidnappers.



I have spoken to three who fled. All want to be doctors and work as medical helpers in their communities. But for now, their lives are on hold.



They are unable to finish their exams, unable to find a safe place to study near home and are still in fear of another attack from Boko Haram. They have lost a year of their schooling and they are traumatised by the kidnapping of their friends.



For a teenage girl, eight weeks in captivity could have life-time consequences — and for their families it is torture. The idea that your daughter should go to school one day and never return is every parent’s nightmare. Not to know whether they have been molested, trafficked or are even alive is a living hell.


These girls were abducted for the sole reason that their captors believe that girls have no right to an education.


Yet this civil rights struggle is being fought out, brutally and — for most of the time — shamefully unobserved.


On one side, terrorists, murderers, rapists and cowards, hell-bent on acts of depravity. On the other, defiant, relentless, brave-beyond-comprehension young girl-heroes and boy-heroes desperately fighting for a future but, sadly, in a world largely oblivious to their plight.


In Britain and in the United States, we do find out. We do learn about abuse and horror from across the globe and we do react. But it’s often too late, and then, inevitably, it’s always too little. We should not fail young people, but it seems like we always do.


But we can’t forget. We owe them. We can’t give up because they won’t have given up.







#BringBackOurGirls: Why we want dialogue option — Abati


In this interview with Ben Agande, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Dr Reuben Abati, speaks on why the Federal Government will not swap Boko Haram detainees with the Chibok schoolgirls abducted on April 14, some 50 days ago.


In this interview with Ben Agande, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Dr Reuben Abati, speaks on why the Federal Government will not swap Boko Haram detainees with the Chibok schoolgirls abducted on April 14, some 50 days ago.


He, however, says government is ready to integrate Boko Haram members who lay down their arms and renounce terrorism back to the Nigerian family. Excerpts:


The President has met with several world leaders since the abduction of the Chibok girls. What have these meetings produced?


The reach out to the international community and the acceptance of offers of support and expression of solidarity by various countries and multilateral institutions has been very productive and fruitful. The President welcomes any offer of assistance and help. What has been achieved with all these efforts: the Paris meeting, the meeting with the President of the Republic of Congo and the meeting in South Africa on the sidelines of the inauguration of President Jacob Zuma is that the President of Nigeria has been able to mobilise international cooperation.


He has been able to draw attention to how Boko Haram, supported by Al Qaeda and other foreign  terrorist organisations,  have tried to invade Nigeria and have tried to overwhelm the Nigerian state. In particular, the point has been well made that terrorism is a global issue and it requires concerted global efforts to deal with the challenge. As a result of the efforts by President Jonathan, the United Nations has officially designated Boko Haram as a terrorist organisation and has imposed sanctions on Boko Haram and its elements and sponsors, wherever they may be identified or found.


Another dimension to it is the renewed cooperation and partnership between Nigeria and the neighbouring countries. At the Paris meeting, hosted by President Francois Hollande, the five neighbouring countries: Nigeria, Niger, Chad, Cameroon and the Republic of Benin, arrived at far reaching decisions, which, as we have seen, have further enriched the existing cooperation and partnership amongst the countries.


The key areas of cooperation include working together to share intelligence, working together to patrol their borders, contributing troops to patrol the border and making it impossible for the terrorists to spread their network further within the region. The meeting in Paris recognised that there is a serious cross border threat.


What has been done is to ensure that there is no hiding place for any terrorist anywhere and the meeting in South Africa even recognised the need to extend this vigilance, this cooperation beyond the West African region.


You must have noticed that in the last one week, some of countries have already raised a battalion of the army that was agreed on in France, the existing cooperation in terms of intelligence sharing is becoming stronger, various countries of the world, including the United Kingdom, the United States of America, France, Canada and Israel have mobilised support for this operation and I think the message has been sent very clearly to Boko Haram and their Al Qaeda collaborators that the world has taken on this challenge as an assault against our common humanity, as affront against human civilisation and as a threat to the entire world.


Talking about cooperation with other countries, an official of the United States government was quoted as saying that there is unwillingness on the part of the Nigerian security services to confront the Boko Haram fighters. Has this concern been raised with the Nigerian government?


The point to be made clearly is that we have a very strong, committed, patriotic Nigerian Army and other security services. Before the abduction of the girls, the same security forces were able to restrict the Boko Haram to only one part of Borno State. These are terrorists who had almost taken over large portions of three different states of the federation and were going to impose their own authorities in the  three states.


They had their own flags, they were well armed and were carving out their own enclave inside Nigeria. What we are talking about today is how they have been restricted to a forest. It is the same Nigerian Army that did that.


Today they are in Sambisa forest and we have no doubt whatsoever that with the support being received, with the attention being focused on this last stronghold of these terrorists, Nigerian security forces will succeed in winning the war. Talking about the criticism of their not being willing to engage, the evidence that I have given you does not prove that they are not willing to engage.


You will note that other foreign commentators on the present task of rescuing the girls that have been abducted have also made it clear that many of the countries offering assistance are not committing in troops. They are sending in security experts who will assist with logistics, surveillance and satellite imageries.


If they provide such support, the people that will go on ground to do the job if it comes to that will still be Nigerian soldiers. I have always stated that commentators and the media should desist from demoralising the Nigerians security forces. They have shown great resolve in taking on this assignment. It is an unusual kind of war. It is unconventional and asymmetrical. You are fighting a battle where the enemy is faceless and is willing to commit suicide. It is an unconventional kind of warfare. What they have done so far is to be encouraged and not demoralised.


In such circumstance where the enemy is not very defined, is government’s offer of dialogue still open? The Committee on Dialogue and Peaceful Resolution of Conflict in the North-east is a standing one. There is also a Presidential Fact-Finding Committee both of which have been engaging stakeholders and have been offering advice.


The position of government has been that the military option is there to deal specifically with impunity because no responsible government will fold its arms and allow any group supported by Al Qaeda to over run the country or threaten to divide the country.


The Nigerian government has made that very clear and President Jonathan has always said that he will not allow anybody to disintegrate Nigeria under his watch. At the same time, government has a soft approach under which it offers those who are willing to renounce terrorism to lay down their arms and return to the fold as citizens. The door is open to them for dialogue.


The door is open to them for repentance and rehabilitation. They are like the lost sheep and the President is saying even these lost sheep we are willing to bring them back to the fold. The door of the Nigerian state is open to anyone who has gone astray, who has been misled to think that violence is a solution to whatever problem he or she may have, to rejoin the Nigerian family and conduct themselves as true citizens.


The government also has short, medium and long term plans in terms of focusing on dealing with the problem, preventing its reoccurrence and helping the victims to be rehabilitated, supported and given an opportunity to live again. As part of that package, we also have a safe school initiative which is being done in collaboration with the UN Envoy and former British Prime Minister, Gordon Brown. Chief of Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshal Alex Badeh and President JonathanGovernment is also working with the states to ensure an economic recovery programme under the auspices of Presidential Initiative in the North -east (PINE). But for you to have an economic recovery programme that would provide the kind of result you need, there must be peace first.


It means you have to put an end to the threat of  terrorism and provide an enabling environment for development to take place because these terrorists have been targeting all the projects of the Federal Government in the North-east. These are anarchists. They attack institutions, they attack villages, and they rape women and turn them into slaves. This cannot be allowed to go on.


These are some of the measures being adopted by government but the immediate challenge is to ensure that these abducted girls are rescued because it is something that strikes at the heart of humanity. To think that young innocent girls who went to school can be abducted by anybody is unthinkable.All of us are anxious because any day that these girls spend with the terrorists reminds us of how the forces of evil threaten the bond that tie all of us together as human beings.


In view of the precarious nature of the extant case of the abducted girls, is the option of swap of prisoners and option?


The position that government has adopted is that government will explore all possible options to see how the girls can be rescued but, as I stated before, this does not include government engaging in trade by barter. In a trade by barter, you exchange two things of equal value.


Those who are talking about prisoner swap, are you saying that the value of the life of an innocent child against whom a crime has been committed, who has been denied the right to education, the right to human freedom, is that child of equal value as a criminal who has taken lives and raised arms against the state?


What ever the government does, at the end of the day, I do not see the Nigerian government engaging in anything that will look like a dehumanisation of the abducted girls. I don’t see the government doing anything that will amount to supporting crime against humanity. But government recognises that it has a responsibility to rescue the girls and brought them back safely home.


I think that is quite obvious. If government needed to declare a state of emergency in the three states of the North-east 18 months ago, there is even a greater need for it now. What we have seen is that after the flushing out of the terrorists, they seem to have returned with greater ferocity which is a clear indication that we are dealing with a long drawn battle.


The decision to extend the state of emergency is a well advised decision, well considered and what it means in simple terms is that it gives the security forces the authorisation to adopt every means under the law to ensure that they confront these terrorists, these evil forces and ensure the security of lives and property and the integrity of Nigeria.


The President is committed to protecting the integrity of Nigeria. One thing that must be noted is that the renewal of the state of emergency received the support of the National Assembly which means that the political leadership, irrespective of party affiliation, is committed to ensuring that the integrity of Nigeria is protected.


As the President has always said, we don’t have any other country. This is the only country that we have and all of us have a responsibility to ensure that evil forces do not overrun our country.



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The Twitter Storm™









The Twitter Storm™


Social Media, Specifically Twitter, Has Become The Fastest Most Reliable Way To Get News And Stay Updated On Current Events/Issues. The Twitter Storm™ Is My Way Of Adding Fun & A Snappy Witt To Delivering Tweets From The Twitterverse.


Yes, You Are Being Dragged Into The 22nd Century Of Social Media….Kicking & Screaming.  ʚ(ˆ◡ˆ)ɞ




The Twitter Storm™















































The White House Hosts Its First-Ever Maker Faire.









President Obama Hosting The White House First-Ever Maker Faire

President Obama Hosting The White House First-Ever Maker Faire


The White House Hosts Its First-Ever Maker Faire








Barack Speaks At The White House Hosts Its First-Ever Maker Faire












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Remarks by the President at the White House Maker Faire


East Room

12:02 P.M. EDT


THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you.  (Applause.)  Thank you so much.  Everybody, have a seat.  Thank you.  Well, good morning.  And welcome to the first-ever White House Maker Faire — which is pretty exciting.  (Applause.)  Let me start off by saying, the only thing that I asked my staff about is why is there an “E” at the end of “faire.”  (Laughter.)  I mean, I wasn’t sure — is there jousting?  Do we all have to get dressed up, or what?  So I’m just warning you — next year, the “E” may be gone.  I don’t know exactly who came up with that.  This is America — we don’t have E’s at the end of “fair.”  (Laughter and applause.)  I’m just saying.  I’m just saying.  Whoever came up with that idea, you let me know.


We’ve got three outstanding members of Congress who are here.  Bill Foster.  (Applause.)  Rush Holt.  (Applause.)  And Russ [sic] Takano.  We’ve got National Science Foundation Director France Cordova, who’s here.  France.  (Applause.)   Our NIH Director Francis Collins.  (Applause.)  My science advisor, John Holdren.  (Applause.)  We’ve got innovators like Dale Dougherty, who’s here, who helped launch the very first Maker Faire nearly a decade ago.  Dale, stand up.  (Applause.)  We have Intel’s youngest intern, who I know because he’s probably the only person who was ever allowed to fire a marshmallow in the White House.  (Laughter.)  Joey Hudy — where’s Joey?  There he is.  (Applause.)  There’s still a stain — (laughter) — from where the marshmallow hit.  It was scary.  The thing just went out a little — you don’t want to be at the receiving end of that marshmallow.  He also brought, by the way, his “3x3x3 LED Shield,” which is his.


And we’ve got some wonderful folks like our Science Guy, Bill Nye, who’s here all the time.  (Applause.)  And Mr. Kamen, a great inventor.  So this is a smart group right here.  There are some innovative folks.

Before I begin, I have to ask:  What on Earth have you done to my house?  (Laughter.)  I mean, there’s a mobile factory on the South Lawn.  There’s a robotic giraffe.  There’s a giant red weather balloon in the Rose Garden.  There’s a paper-crafted dinosaur head in the hallway.  Over here is a 3D-printed sculpture of my State of the Union Address.  (Laughter.)  Clearly, there could have been some edits right there in the middle.  (Laughter.)  The sculpture clearly goes on too long.  (Laughter.)  So this is not your typical day at the White House.


We invited you here because today is “D.I.Y.”  Today’s D.I.Y. is tomorrow’s “Made in America.”  Your projects are examples of a revolution that’s taking place in American manufacturing — a revolution that can help us create new jobs and industries for decades to come.


And five years after the worst economic crisis of our lifetimes, our businesses have created jobs for 51 straight months — that’s 9.4 million new jobs in total.  But we know we’ve got to create more.  And one of the best ways to create more good jobs is by boosting American manufacturing.


So we’ve seen an auto industry that’s come roaring back, and our manufacturing sector has been adding jobs for the first time since the 1990s; about 640,000 new manufacturing jobs since February of 2010.  And in the absence of much action from Congress, we’re doing what we can, I’m doing what I can on my own to keep that progress going.  So I’ve launched four new high-tech manufacturing hubs across the country, with more on the way.  Yesterday, I went to the TechShop in Pittsburgh, where you can use equipment like laser cutters and 3D printers for about the cost of a gym membership.  We announced new steps that we’re taking to help entrepreneurs turn their ideas into products.  More than 90 mayors made commitments to help entrepreneurs manufacture new things in their communities, and we’re proud to have some of those mayors here today.


So we’re going to do whatever we can to bring good manufacturing jobs back to our shores, because our parents and our grandparents created the world’s largest economy and strongest middle class not by buying stuff, but by building stuff — by making stuff, by tinkering and inventing and building; by making and selling things first in a growing national market and then in an international market — stuff “Made in America.”


And the good news is, is that new tools and technologies are making the building of things easier than ever.  There is a democratization of manufacturing that is potentially available because of technology.  Across our country, ordinary Americans are inventing incredible things, and then they’re able to bring them to these fairs like Makers Faires.  And you never know where this kind of enthusiasm and creativity and innovation could lead.  So in the 1970s, Steve Wozniak designed the Apple One to show off for the members of the “Homebrew Computer Club.”  And today, Apple is worth about $550 billion.  I wish I had been there.  (Laughter.)  I’d like to think that I would have said, that’s a good idea.  (Laughter.)  Here, take my $100.  (Laughter.)


And while I don’t know if the projects here today are the next Apple, I do know that by looking at some of these exhibits, it was just incredible what is being done.


So you take the team from The Workshop School in West Philadelphia, and compared to most other schools there are a lot of advantages they don’t have.  This is a poor community.  They do have, however, Simon Hauger, a principal who is so talented, a student once said, “He could teach algebra to a guinea pig.”  (Laughter.)  And with Simon’s help, we’ve got Derrick Bell here, Taliya Carter, Joshua Pigford.  Their team built a biodiesel sports car that gets around a 100 miles per gallon, which is why the Secret Service didn’t let me drive it.  (Laughter.)


But what’s happening is, is that the young people now are able to learn by doing.  So math, science all gets incorporated into the task of actually making something, which the students tell me makes the subject matter that much more interesting.  Or you’ve got Jen McCabe, who is setting up a space called Factorli, in Las Vegas, to provide custom, small-scale manufacturing — kind of like a Kinko’s or a copy shop, but instead of printing flyers, they’re going to be able to print custom parts for American products.


There’s Marc Roth, from San Francisco.  A few years ago, Marc found himself homeless.  And at a shelter, Marc heard about a local “TechShop” that teaches folks how to use new tools like laser cutters and 3D printers, and he signed up.  And within 16 months, he had started SF Laser, his own laser-cutting business. He just launched a program called “The Learning Shelter” to teach tech and manufacturing skills to other folks who are trying to get back on their feet.


As you were going through the exhibits, you saw young people who are students at places like MIT helping to design mobile factories that bring the tools for invention to communities that might have thought that kind of stuff was out of reach for them.  An incredible story of a young woman who figured out how to make a cheap incubator that’s already helping 60,000 newbies around the world who can’t afford the sort of expensive equipment that we have in our hospitals.


It gives you a sense that we are at the dawn of something big.  And one of the professors who I had a chance to speak to as I was taking the tour described it as analogous to where we were with the Internet 25, 30 years ago.  In the same way that we were at that time reorganizing how we could use data and information, we are now at a point where we’re going to be able to reorganize how we think about making things and marrying the information revolution to what’s been an analogue manufacturing system.  And it’s incredibly exciting and we’re at the cutting edge of it, but we’ve got to make sure that we continue to be at the cutting edge of it.


So as a country, we ought to be doing what Simon, and Jen, and Marc are doing every day, and we’ve got to make sure that more Americans have the skills and opportunities to land a job in a growing industry, or to create entirely new industries.  So that’s why I’m declaring today a “National Day of Making” — and it’s why I’m backing those words up with action.


We’re helping schools take shop class into the 21st century, because one of the things I’m really interested in is how do we redesign high schools so that young people are able to do stuff as they are learning.  And that’s not just true for schools in inner-city Philadelphia, that’s true for schools generally, in part because it also then gives new opportunities for young people who may have different learning styles to thrive in ways that they might not if they’re just sitting there listening to a lecture.


We’re providing new support for startups that want to file for a patent.  From the Defense Department to the SBA, and from the National Science Foundation to NASA, we’re doing more to help entrepreneurs start new businesses that make things in America.


And of course, this is not just a job for government.  Today, more than 150 colleges and universities are committing to giving young people more hands-on opportunities to make things.  So a few minutes ago, a young man named Partha Unnava showed me the letter announcing that commitment — and of course, it was on some metal that was 3D-printed.  He couldn’t just give me a piece of paper.  (Laughter.)  It’s harder to file, by the way, but it looks cooler.  (Laughter.)


The private sector is stepping up, as well.  From Indiegogo and Etsy to Disney and Intel, companies have pledged to help unleash a new wave of innovation here in America.  And these companies do different things, they come from different industries, but they share the belief that when we tap the potential of every American, all of us are better off.


Camille and Genevieve Beatty are here today from Asheville, North Carolina.  They’re 14 and 12 years old.  Where are they?  Raise your hands, guys.  There you are.  (Applause.)  They happen to be the co-founders of Beatty Robotics.  Genevieve does the wiring, Camille machines the metal.  As their website puts it, “Who needs a paper route when you can start a robotics company?”  (Laughter.)  That’s a pretty good motto.  That’s great, I love that.  (Laughter.)


But the Beattys say one of the main things they’ve learned over the last few years isn’t about power tools or engineering or electronics.  What they’ve learned is that, “If you can imagine it, then you can do it — whatever it is.”  And that’s a pretty good motto for America.


This is a country that imagined a railroad connecting a continent, imagined electricity powering our cities and towns, imagined skyscrapers reaching into the heavens, and an Internet that brings us closer together.  So we imagined these things, then we did them.  And that’s in our DNA.  That’s who we are.  We’re not done yet.  And I hope every company, every college, every community, every citizen joins us as we lift up makers and builders and doers across the country.  If we do, I know we’re going to be able to create more good jobs in the years to come.  We’re going to create entire new industries that we can’t yet imagine, although I suspect Camille and Genevieve may have already figured it out.  (Laughter.)


And we’re going to rebuild our economy and restore our middle class, and give opportunities for people whose potential is not yet tapped.  There are kids out there, there are adults out there right now who have a great idea.  And they don’t have access to the capital they need.  They don’t have the tools they need to put together a prototype.  They don’t know how to link up with folks who could help refine those ideas.  And what the Maker movement does, what technology does, what the information revolution does is it allows all those folks to suddenly be a part of this creative process.  And what better place to do that than here in the United States of America?


This is a place where we know how to invent and we know how to dream and we know how to take risks.  And this is a place where people who work hard have always been able to make it.  We want to make sure that continues.  So thanks for the great work you’re all doing.  It’s very inspiring.


God bless you.  God bless the United States of America.  Thank you.  (Applause.)

12:17 P.M. EDT









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