Trumpism remains and must be defeated
On Saturday, a perverse caricature of a President was defeated by Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. It was squeaker for sure and that, alone, raises awful questions about the future, about why 70 million Americans actually liked Donald Trump despite his contempt for people, law, process and common decency. His Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos was for American schools, what a chainsaw is for a tree, proposing billions of dollars in cuts to American schools, refusing loan relief for students misled about the quality of education they paid for – she even planned to cut funding for the Special Olympics until, of all people, Donald Trump came to the rescue.
Educators across the U.S. have fought bitterly against the Trump administration along with all the other governments over generations that have tried to cut education and let it deteriorate. Strike after strike across America has had, at its core, the idea that education is inextricably entwined in the community in which it takes place.
So, it’s only natural, that educators might have something to say about the Biden/Harris victory:
In Colorado, Amy Baca-Oehlert, head of the Colorado Education Association, said:
“The 39,000 members of the Colorado Education Association are proud to have helped elect former Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Kamala Harris as the next president and vice president of the United States. President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris share in our values for equal opportunity for all students, regardless of their ZIP code, and an unwavering commitment to educators everywhere. After four years of Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos’ failed leadership and policy decisions, we look forward to President-elect Biden selecting a Secretary of Education who has the best interests of students at heart.”
The National Education Association (NEA) released a statement celebrating the Biden/Harris victory highlighting the amount of work educators did to make it happen:
“Educators’ hard work to make this day a reality started long before the 2020 election cycle began. Over the last four years, NEA members have taken heroic action to stand up for their students, their profession, and their communities. Millions of educators rallied under the #RedForEd banner for school funding and educator pay equity, denounced the confirmation of Betsy DeVos as secretary of education, and volunteered for pro-public education candidates. Thousands of educators ran for office and won in the 2018 midterm elections.
That activism has been front and centre for years in Chicago, where the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) has battled at city and state levels for decent schools and communities. The CTU’s comments made no bones about the power of “Black and Brown grassroots organizers.”
School reprints the full statement here: