My buddy Steve at the NEA RA.
The reports are that a front will come through about noon today and the four days of 100 degree temperatures will end.
Poor Ulysses will be able to put his paws on the sidewalk again.
Maybe next Saturday Anne and I can have our Saturday Coffee outside at Letizia’s. But not today. It was still too muggy and hot.
We were back at Peet’s. The news is that Emma is back from Argentina. Laura is having a baby. And Kerry Wood was having his coffee. I gave him a nod. He gave me a nod. And that is the extent of our relationship.
Good thing my skin is thick. Since my return from the NEA RA, I have caught hell.
One blogger called me an unabashed cheerleader for the NEA. This guy isn’t a right-winger. So why is he mad at me?
He’s got data that shows that the job of teaching has gotten shittier over time and the NEA has existed over time and that shows that teaching has gotten shittier even though there has been an NEA. Got that?
Let me answer the charge that I am a cheerleader for the NEA.
It is true.
This is precisely what I tell the union leadership. I am an unabashed cheerleader for my union. “Unabashed.” Without regret or embarrassment.
The leadership will swear to you that I am an anti-union bomb thrower because I have the nerve to criticize their leadership when they earn the criticism. I have demonstrated an alternative unionism in my local and have done it for years: A unionism that fights for its members, defends collective bargaining and promotes a humane view of teaching and learning.
Then I got this comment:
But more importantly is why are so many teachers attending this conference so clueless??? I bet they know more about “The Bachelor” than what’s going on across the country in education. When did Duncan become the good guy?? In her blog, Ravitch reminds us just what he stands for.
Oh! How nice of the delegates to support Chicago when they refuse to say anything negative about the man who ruined Chicago schools. I wonder how many of them will wake up when they get pink-slipped over some arbitrary statistic known as VAM.
Am I the only one who finds talk like this really disturbing? And way too common?
I can’t help but read a subtext of sexism into this kind of attack. And not so sub.
Do they know that the largest proportion of the delegates to the NEA RA are professional and working women?
Would anyone talk this way about 9,000 delegates to an academic conference of mostly men? Even if they disagreed with the decisions that were made?
The other subtext to this union bashing from these so-called progressives and leftists is their opposition to Obama.
The irony is that a year ago when the early endorsement of Obama was actually an item on the floor of the NEA RA, we were fighting the early no-strings endorsement.
Hey. Where were you people then?
And when a long list of criticisms of the Duncan DOE was presented to the NEA RA, we were fighting for it and won. And NONE of these people made a peep.
As we say at Wrigley, you can look it up. Do a Google search. See if you can find them talking about it anywhere a year ago when it actually mattered. Talk about a late closing of the barn door.
Say what you will about the delegates to the RA this year. They aren’t stupid or clueless. Whether they watch The Bachelor or not is of no consequence to me. They made a political decision not to have a public dispute with Obama five months before the election. I may disagree with that, but it isn’t stupid or clueless.
I may not have allowed the NEA to use my name in their Educators for Obama, but I also know that the only demographic group in America that supports Romney is white men.
So who is stupid and clueless?
Here are my rules:
Changes to my union must be led and made by our members.
Secondly, we must fight to make our union stronger, not to eradicate it or start a new one.
Third, it must be fought over issues, program and action, not simply slogans.
And fourth, we always must distinguish between the members and the leaders.
And even the leaders must be given room to change.
I’m pretty unabashed about that.