Skip to comments.CA: Teachers deserve say on where union dues go
Posted on 07/13/2005 9:29:20 PM PDT by NormsRevenge
Imagine for a moment that your next paycheck is short $53. You call your employer for an explanation and are told that the money is being used to fight for your employee rights and provide you with job protection. Sounds like a good deal, right? Not so fast.
Mandatory union dues make this hypothetical scenario a reality for public-school teachers across the country. As employees of the Los Angeles Unified School District, for example, we are required to pay a monthly fee to United Teachers Los Angeles, regardless of whether or not we want to become members of the union. Of course, any responsible teacher would be foolish not to accept the job insurance membership affords. Nevertheless, this leverage enables the UTLA to pursue more dubious causes behind the scenes.
Our teachers union "banks" on the assumption that its members are too foolish or lazy to research where, in fact, their dues are being allocated. And many concerned teachers would have to do an IRS-style audit to ascertain this vital information. The UTLA has nebulous ways of hiding its political agenda under the guise of "what's good for one teacher is good for the entire profession."
Some pernicious slogans written on signs at a May 25 "Protest Arnold" rally demonstrate the anger UTLA helps foment against any politician who dares to challenge the status quo of public education: "True Lies = Broken Promises," "$10,000 Dinners Would Buy a Lot of School Supplies," "We Earned our Pensions in 'A' Classrooms, Not 'B' Movies!"
If that's not enough to reveal the disingenuousness of the union's claims to be nonpartisan, read the words outgoing UTLA President John Perez wrote in the June 10 United Teacher Newspaper: "Our enemies will be George and Arnold and all those who want our schools to fail so they can get their hands on the public education money."
And Perez was voted out because he was not "progressive" enough!
You can disagree with plans to hold schools accountable for their performance, but it is demagoguery of the most insidious form to claim that supporters of such reforms as "No Child Left Behind" or merit pay want schools to fail.
As has been displayed from Sacramento to Los Angeles, a large and very vocal majority of teachers find Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's audacity to take on the unions appalling. This outrage is evident even though his plans were noted early on in his campaign for governor, when he professed his eagerness to tackle "special interests." As a result, the UTLA assumed there would be no qualms if a $7 fee to combat Schwarzenegger were added on to the already hefty monthly dues.
"Arnold is no friend of the teacher," our colleagues often note. And those are the most innocuous words you'll hear around the state. But the question that the "silent minority" like us asks is: Why should our money ($84 per year) be dedicated to something we are against? Couldn't this money be better spent on those elusive books and supplies we hear so much about? Maybe that would be a more productive way for the UTLA to counter Schwarzenegger rather than labeling him a thief.
It might surprise people to learn that there are public-school teachers who disagree with the politics of the unions. Consider the veteran teacher at our school whose son is about to be shipped out to Iraq. He had a "Support the Troops" bumper sticker on his car, but it was torn off in the teachers' parking lot.
The pride he has for his country is no match for the union pride on display every Tuesday at staff meetings. As teachers leave school each Monday, they are reminded to wear their red T-shirts, some of which display the following message on the front: "A War Budget Leaves Every Child Behind."
Perhaps the few dissenters should create their own shirts. We know what it would say: "Union Dues Leave Some Teachers Behind."
Their blog is www.partialtranscripts.blogspot.com.
Well, when do Ari and Aaron have the fatwa issued for their murders?
I should of said: "When does the union brotherhood issue the fatwa for Ari and Aaron's murder?"
The members must really be foolish because even I, who am not a teacher or union member, know where the money goes. For those who don't know, it goes for lobbyists and donations to the demorats.
Thanks. Got that bookmarked. These guys got guts.
Sounds like a hate crime at the very least, possibly terrorist activity. A liberal school teacher wouldn't be against freedom of speech.
We need zero tolerance for hate crimes or acts of terrorism, near our schools!
Every teacher in that school with access to the parking lot should be forced to take a lie detector test to discover who committed the crime or have their teaching credentials stripped from them.
Zero tolerance MUST begin with teachers since 6 year old students are required to live by it.
Where are the liberals on this crime?
What they need to do is just start saying no to unions. Then THEY can distribute their own money.