There’s nothing like a pandemic to bring out the, er, worst in people. Americans are suffering financial crises stemming from the loss of a job or a business, and we’ve watched the government’s attempts to help. We’ve also observed, unsurprisingly, the blatant abuses of power as both sides of the aisle, but Democrats especially, use the situation to push their respective agendas. That disgraceful trend now extends even to the education system. As schools across the nation consider reopening in August, the United Teachers Los Angeles Union (UTLA) has a list of demands to be met before it allows children to return to class. Social distancing practices aside, the union folks also want to defund the police, close charter schools, and promote self-serving legislation unrelated to the Coronavirus.
Defund the Police
According to a report filed by the union, “Police violence is a leading cause of death and trauma for Black people, and is a serious public health and moral issue.” What a factual injustice, that statement. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), heart disease is the number one killer of black male adults, followed closely by cancer. Homicide is number four on the top ten list with 5.1%, but this statistic does not differentiate between black-on-black crimes, police violence, or other murders. The crime analytics of California show that L.A. is more dangerous than 88% of U.S. cities. The chances of becoming a victim of crime in the city is one in 132 compared to one in 224 for the entire Golden State. So, yes, defunding the police sounds like a brilliant idea, right?
The union report also claims that “Privately operated, publicly funded charter schools drain resources from district schools.” In other words, it’s all about the money and how district schools can dip their hands deeper into the cookie jar. UTLA attempts to justify the demand to shutter charter schools by saying that co-locating these schools with regular campuses “adds students to campuses when we need to reduce the number of students to allow for physical distancing.” However, one of the benefits usually found in charter schools is the lower teacher-student ratio, smaller classrooms, and more direct teaching. Many of these institutions are geared towards advancing children in a particular skill set that they wouldn’t get from public schools, such as focusing on performing arts, music, computer science, and so forth. This push seems more like the union’s attempt to pluck out an irritating thorn than it is about concern over students’ health, as can be seen from some of the other demands.
Financial Support for Illegal Immigrants
Liberals have been trying to give illegal immigrants more rights than citizens for a while now, and the effort has yet to lose momentum. Migrants here illegally are potential voters for the Democratic Party, and early education is an excellent starting point to indoctrinate, so of course, securing financial support for the children and their families would be one of the main objectives. California’s Governor Gavin Newsom (D) implemented a plan in May that provided COVID-19 stimulus payments for those in the country illegally, so L.A. trying to bilk more money from the taxpayers to support aliens should not come as a surprise.
Tax the Rich
The UTLA insists that the only reason President Donald Trump is pushing for schools to reopen is for the economy, not to benefit the children, and that the notion is being backed by billionaires, especially those in the Golden State. “It is time to take a stand against Trump’s dangerous, anti-science agenda that puts the lives of our members, our students, and our families at risk,” said UTLA President Cecily Myart-Cruz. Taxing the rich is, therefore, imperative to reopening schools:
- Wealth Tax: “A new tax on unrealized capital gains to California billionaires only, 1% a year until capital gains taxes are met. This would generate an estimated $10 billion a year initially.”
- Millionaire Tax: “Add a 1% tax on incomes over $1 million a year, and 3% for over $3 million a year. This would generate an estimated 4.5 billion-plus a year.”
The true agenda is clear. UTLA is only mildly concerned about its students and staff. The real goal is to secure more money. How does defunding police or taxing the rich achieve social distancing? Oh, don’t misunderstand; UTLA also wants more funding to restart education to achieve a safe environment for the children. Its report states that the “total additional expenses to restart physical schools could be nearly $250 million.”
On a federal level, UTLA lists the following demands:
- Medicare for All
- Federal Bailout
- Fully Fund Title I
- Fully Fund the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
Before schools can reopen “safely,” the union board also says the state needs to provide “housing security” for homeless students and paid sick leave for parents who need to stay home with a sick child. Once again, it’s not about the children. UTLA is acting more like a vengeful parent during a divorce, using the children as a weapon or tool against the spouse to achieve personal goals. The intent is obvious, at least to the informed: It’s about punishing the rich and raking in as much money as possible. “Californians must make a choice,” the report claims, “continue deficit spending that will take years to pay down at the expense of communities, or demand that California’s record number of millionaires and billionaires finally pay their fair share.”
Do you see any mention of this being necessary for student safety when reopening schools? No. It all comes down to grasping for handouts – while the nation’s children sit on the sideline, waiting for the adults to decide their fate.
Read more from Kelli Ballard.