American Federation of Teachers union president Randi Weingarten channels Marx calling Jews “privileged members of the ownership class” to justify the harm that Weingarten herself is doing to children.
The Federalist Given that we’ve known since last summer that younger children are unlikely to spread the virus and that the CDC has made it clear that schools can safely reopen even without all teachers having been vaccinated, the stubborn refusal of public school teachers unions to agree to go back to the classrooms is puzzling.
Or at least it would be, if it weren’t so clearly in the interests of the unions to keep the teachers and students at home rather than in school. In doing so, these Democratic Party allies and funders have managed to increase their power over both school systems and politicians.
But when asked to respond to the complaints of parents about the damage they are doing to their children by insisting on keeping them home and dependent on Zoom rather than in-person teaching, the leader of one of the country’s most powerful unions responded in a manner that demonstrated how leftist woke ideology works.
American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten is one of the most powerful forces in education and a well-known player in Democratic Party politics. The arrogance that such power breeds was on full display in an interview she gave to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency.
She was asked how she would respond to parents who are complaining that unions have been the primary obstacle to opening public schools despite the fact that many, if not most, private and parochial schools have been open for full-time, in-person instruction since the fall.
Weingarten’s answer illustrated her slavish devotion to leftist ideology as well as her contempt for these families. Although she was speaking to a Jewish publication, there was no need for her to take specific aim at Jewish parents, but that’s what she did:
American Jews are now part of the ownership class. Jews were immigrants from somewhere else. And they needed the right to have public education. And they needed power to have enough income and wealth for their families that they could put their kids through college and their kids could do better than they have done. Both economic opportunity through the labor movement and an educational opportunity through public education were key for Jews to go from the working class to the ownership class. What I hear when I hear that question is that those who are in the ownership class now want to take that ladder of opportunity away from those who do not have it.
It’s interesting that Weingarten chose to inject the notion of Jews as beneficiaries of white privilege into the discussion. Weingarten is the Lesbian spouse of Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum of Congregation Beit Simchat Torah, a synagogue that serves the LGBTQ community in New York. But she spoke in a manner that seems straight of the anti-Semitic themes in Karl Marx’s infamous essay “On the Jewish Question,” in which Communism’s founding father spewed angry contempt for his fellow Jews and labeled them capitalist parasites and oppressors.
For Weingarten to use these stereotypes was disgraceful. But it exactly illustrates worries that toxic theories about white privilege are giving a permission slip to anti-Semites, even Jewish ones.
That she did so in order to distract the public from the damage she and her union are inflicting on the children of this country is shameful. But what makes it even worse is that it’s not Jewish families complaining about unions who are trying to “take away the ladder of opportunity” from the poor. It’s Weingarten and the AFT who are doing that.
The unions’ determination to keep schools closed is consigning a generation of children to more months of Zoom classes that are both harming their developmentand widening the gap between the rich and the poor, something particularly dangerous for inner-city minority kids who were already underserved by the public system.
The injury Weingarten and the unions are doing to children is incalculable, but what she is doing in the name of protecting “opportunity” for the underprivileged while trashing middle-class Jewish families who want their kids in school is world-class chutzpah. It also indicates how adherents of critical race theory instinctively judge people by race or background so as to silence or intimidate them.
There is nothing in Jewish texts or tradition that says it’s okay to force minority kids to be stuck in dead-end public schools just to protect the power of teachers unions that might be lost if parents were allowed to choose better schools for their families that they can’t currently afford.
Nor is it a Jewish value to force parents to stay home watching their kids rather than go to work to help keep them out of poverty just because Weingarten’s union has discovered that the lockdowns suit them just fine.
Teachers unions have become a deeply destructive force in public education. So long as people like Randi Weingarten have public education by the throat, America’s children are in danger.
Listen to Don Bongino size up Randi Weingarten for the repugnant, far-left commie loon that she is: