Anyone who has heard me speak knows that I often will state that the most important elected position in America is School Board. I say that because what is happening in our schools in America is abhorrent. We have a system of indoctrination based upon a progressive socialist ideological agenda. The only way to right the ship is for constitutional conservatives to reinstate a real system of education, and local control of curriculum, not top down federal mandates. A key part of this is to ask: what do teachers unions really do? Do they advocate for better educational opportunities for our students? Do they ensure teachers are enabled, and resourced, to do their best in our classrooms? Or, are they just an arm of the, well, let’s be honest, the Democratic Socialists of America?
As reported by National Review:
“In a landmark First Amendment decision, the Supreme Court ruled earlier this summer in Janus v. AFSCME that states cannot require public employees to pay “agency fees” to unions. Prior to the decision, in 22 states, public employees who chose not to join a union could still be required to pay these fees — somewhat less than full dues — for union services. Some have suggested that unions might temper their left-wing politics in response to the decision, in the hopes of wooing potential members put off by union politics.
For unions, the stakes could hardly be higher. Kate Walsh, president of the National Council on Teacher Quality, warns that surveys show “many [teachers] see dues as too high” and “political activity as too leftist”; she also notes that “only half of all teachers voted for Hillary Clinton.” Internal documents from the National Education Association (NEA), the nation’s largest teachers’ union, anticipate that the union will lose a whopping 300,000 members. Things look even bleaker for the American Federation of Teachers (AFT), the nation’s other major teachers’ union, which has 15 of its 22 largest state affiliates in former agency-fee states — and already had fewer than half its members paying full dues.”
This summer, both of the major teacher’s unions, the National Educators Association and the American Federation of Teachers held their respective conferences, after the Janus SCOTUS decision. Now, one would think that perhaps these large teachers unions would shift, and focus on real issues in the classroom . . . nah.
“At the NEA’s annual convention and representative assembly in Minneapolis, things kicked off on day one with Parkland survivor and woke gun-control activist David Hogg joining NEA president Lily Eskelsen García on stage to exhort the cheering throng, “There’s nothing more powerful in America than a pissed-off teacher.” The NEA also made time to award its Human and Civil Rights Award — given to those who have “demonstrated remarkable courage and conviction to stand up for racial and social justice” — to recipients including First Lady Michelle Obama and former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
The NEA adopted 122 total New Business Items, including commitments to promote the Black Lives Matter Week of Action (including supporting BLM’s demand that “ethnic studies be taught in pre-K-12 schools”), to support “a strategy postponing confirmation of a Supreme Court justice until after the mid-term election,” and to encourage teachers to assign readings that “describe and deconstruct the systemic proliferation of a White supremacy culture and its constituent elements of White privilege and institutional racism.” The NEA also promised to respond “in support of and in solidarity with immigrant families who are separated, incarcerated, or refused their legal right to request asylum due to the heartless, racist, and discriminatory zero-tolerance policies of the Trump administration.”
In a move that promises to open a nasty new front in the culture wars, the NEA further pledged to “post a list of known individuals with businesses who are committed to refusing services to same-sex couples and/or LGBTQ individuals. NEA can access a list of these individuals and their businesses from organizations such as THINKPROGRESS (thinkprogress.org), Southern Poverty Law Center, and Human Rights Campaign, and share it with all state and local affiliates on nea.org.”
Now, may I ask the very obvious question: what the heck does any of this have to do with better educating, and preparing, our children for a 21st century economy? The answer is nothing. This is all about a leftist indoctrination, producing the next generation of little Marxist/Democratic socialists who embrace the wealth redistribution, and nationalizing, of economic production. Needless to say, the NEA has nothing to do with education, but rather the implementation of a leftist political ideology. We clearly know the reason for the rise of homeschooling . . . and why these leftist teachers unions oppose anything that undermines their promulgation of leftist ideology.What do teacher's unions do? Not what they are supposed to be doing. Click To Tweet
However, not to be outdone, the American Federation of Teachers also had their summer play time. The article continues:
“At the AFT’s biennial convention in Pittsburgh, Hillary Clinton was awarded the union’s Women’s Rights Award, affording her a chance to share a few more thoughts on Donald Trump and why she lost the 2016 election. The convention’s other featured speakers spanned the diverse spectrum of the Democratic party’s far-left wing, ranging from militant progressive Elizabeth Warren to Democratic Socialist Bernie Sanders.
Somehow, the AFT’s new policies leaned further left than the NEA’s. The AFT unanimously endorsed a “public investment strategy for health care and education infrastructure,” which includes: universal health care, “whether single-payer health care or MediCare for All;” free tuition at all public colleges and universities, as well as “funding for wage justice for adjuncts;” universal, full-day, free child care; doubled per-pupil spending for low-income K–12 districts; and “taxation of the rich to fully fund” a raft of education programs. AFT further resolved that they would “call on our endorsed candidates to support these priorities, and toward that end we will embed these aspirations in our questionnaires to potential candidates seeking our support.” Swing-state Democrats, beware.
For those who didn’t get quite get the message, AFT president Randi Weingarten told reporters, “We’re becoming more political, not less political.” Let educators, would-be members, and public officials be forewarned.”
What do teacher’s unions do? Not what they are supposed to be doing. They have become nothing more than shills for the progressive socialist ideological agenda. And if you are a teacher, the message is simple: they espouse a collective mentality, and will not tolerate any dissension. For anyone running for political office, the message is clear: support this failing leftist agenda or else.
Yep, teachers unions are into threats and intimidation. One would have thought that after the Janus decision that these unions would have adjusted their behavior, but that ain’t happening. As with all things left, they have dug in their heels. As Randi Weingarten said, “We’re becoming more political, not less political.” This is also the same Randi Weingarten who was against one of the most successful schools in NYC, Success Academy, a charter school in Harlem. Heck, why should she care about young black kids receiving a quality education? She wants another indoctrinated generation of victims, not victors.
Growing up in Atlanta, attending Our Lady of Lourdes, Marist, and Henry Grady high school, my teachers wanted to see me well-educated and successful. I agree that teachers need better pay, I should know since I taught high school for a year after retiring from the Army. But, in reading about the NEA/AFT conferences this summer, the focus of these teachers unions is not on the student, nor the teacher. It is all about the spread of an ideological agenda by way of an early indoctrination. This is why we need courageous men and women on our school boards who will push back against this cancer. We need to restore local control of education, and push back on top-down federal government mandates.
Always remember: ever since Jimmy Carter created the Department of Education, the standards of our system of education have fallen, while the system of indoctrination has risen.
During his 22 year career in the United States Army, Lieutenant Colonel West served in several combat zones and received many honors including a Bronze Star, three Meritorious Service Medals, three Army Commendation Medals, one with Valor device, and a Valorous Unit Award.
In November of 2010, Allen was elected to the United States Congress, representing Florida’s 22nd District.
He is a Fox News Contributor, Director of the Booker T. Washington Initiative at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, Senior Fellow at the Media Research Center, contributing columnist for Townhall.com, and author of Guardian of the Republic: An American Ronin’s Journey to Family, Faith and Freedom, and, Hold Texas, Hold the Nation: Victory or Death, published October 16, 2018, from Brown Books Publishing Group.