Politically acceptable? Is this another way of saying "no change"? Change can be for the better.
I do not know where you teach but I teach in a school where it is nearly impossible to fail 1 honor student, a teacher is more likely to not get rehired than a single honors student is to fail a class. In 2014, 60% of students who took AP Physics B passed with a 3 or higher. In 2015, 63% of students who took AP Physics 1 failed receiving a score of a 1 or 2. To call this a change for the better is analogous to calling the Great Leap Forward a change for the better.
So, it prepares them for more classes?
Yes. The high school class that is appropriate for the overwhelming majority of high school students is a high school level physics class. The purpose of that class is to prepare them for college level physics class. Why is this so hard to imagine? Why not just teach students quantum mechanics as a first year course for high school students?
Is that what college should prepare us for? More college?
You are probably right that college does indeed prepare us for more college. But it should prepare us for a career.
Contrary to popular opinion college was never designed for preparing people for careers. Furthermore you vastly overestimate the degree of rigor involved in most corporate work. I spent 10 years in finance working doing various levels of statistical analysis and quantitative modeling. Without question the course that proved most valuable for me was my 9th grade BASIC programming class. In fact I remember convincing my coworker when I worked in Risk Management that you could train monkeys to do 90% of our jobs, and the other 10% could be given to a smart high school graduate. Bear in mind, this is pretty high level white collar work, I did not need a physics degree and I doubt that it made any major contribution.