Tuesday, November 10, 2009

First thoughts on today's shameless press conference by the pro-charter/voucher establishment

"Improving education is not the goal. Privatization is the goal... Private interests are just that – private." -- Bruce A. Dixon (Managing Editor, "Black Agenda Report")

Defend our communities from the corporate charter fear campaign led by Alliance for a Better Community
Defend our communities from the corporate charter fear campaign led by Alliance for a Better Community
At no point during the event did any of the pro-charter/voucher establishment make it clear that the flyer didn't originate from UTLA! Lies of omission are lies nonetheless.

Let's be clear, today's press conference was called as a desperate attempt to move the focus off some corporate charters' bad faith negotiating with LAUSD Superintendent Cortines over Special Education. With little to no community support for corporate charters, and many charters making themselves look very, very bad by rejecting and fighting the resolution's requirements to educate special needs children and respect attendance boundaries, they are now wont to try and focus the blame on the hard working teachers of UTLA! This is an obvious smear campaign, and cannot be allowed to go unchallenged.

While the content of the flyer in question is deplorable, the fact that at no time during the press conference did any speaker mention the flyer did not come from UTLA, is not associated with UTLA in any way, nor does it represent UTLA's position in any fashion, is just as despicable. ABC's Executive Veronica Melvin made every effort to suggest UTLA was somehow guilty by association. Worse still was Maria Casillas, President of FIS, who asserted "unions need to monitor their own people," clearly trying to place the blame for some rogue individual squarely on organized labor.

To have two prominent school board members then follow these NGO executives, and not call out the previous two speakers' obvious innuendo and lies of omission is unconscionable! Board President Garcia went as far as to suggest certain organizations (standing at the UTLA entrance) were violating civil rights! We activists in the social justice movement understand Garcia, Flores-Aguilar, and the 501c3 executive crowd owe a great debt to the corporate benefactors backing them financially, but today's smear campaign was way beyond the pale.

Please look forward to an expanded report on this time permits.


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