American Consequences - March 2021


Even President Biden has been bulldozed by the unions. As the Wall Street Journal noted, despite promising teachers more money and agreeing to many of their demands, Biden is “discovering what America’s parents have learned in the last year: Unions run the schools, and no one – not parents, not school districts, not mayors, and not even a new Democratic President – will tell them what to do.” Stories of union hypocrisy from the past year have also emerged, angering parents... The Chicago teachers union official who argued that it was unsafe for teachers to return to the classroom while posting images of herself poolside (and mask-less) in Puerto Rico on vacation... or the president of the Berkeley, California teachers union whose own daughter has enjoyed full-time, in- person private school while he denies public school kids that same privilege by arguing that teachers cannot safely return to the classroom... or the recent warning by Los Angeles County teachers union officials to members on their Facebook page to make sure they don’t post pictures of their spring break trips to social media since “it is hard to argue that it is unsafe for in-person instruction, if parents and the public see vacation photos and international travel.” But there are signs that parents and elected officials have reached the limits of their tolerance for the teachers unions. Some parents have begun filing lawsuits. As local news outlets in Albuquerque, New Mexico recently reported, “Accusations of civil rights violations have been filed against the Albuquerque Public Schools Board of Education on behalf of students who cannot

most notably for the children who rely on school for a range of social services, including daily meals. There is also now ample and disturbing evidence of the social and emotional harms to children caused by distance learning. Mental health crises have increased dramatically among school-age children over the past year. “When we started to see the uptick in children taking their lives, we knew it wasn’t just the COVID numbers we need to look at anymore,” one Nevada school official, told the New York Times . A lengthy investigation by ProPublica described in heart-wrenching detail the trauma experienced by teenagers who have been isolated and unable to interact normally in school with their peers for more than a year. “When we started to see the uptick in children taking their lives, we knew it wasn’t just the COVID numbers we need to look at anymore,” But this hasn’t swayed the unions... Over the summer, as civil unrest played out in many cities, the Chicago Teacher’s Union found the time to tweet support for activists who had erected a guillotine outside the Washington, D.C. home of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, noting, “We are completely frightened by, completely impressed by and completely in support of wherever this is headed. #Solidarity.” (The union later deleted the tweet.) They also created and circulated on social media a dance video where they repeated, “Not until it’s safe!”


March 2021

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