Slog Music

Music, Nightlife,
and Drinks

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Teachers Are "Parasites" and "Terrorists"

Posted by on Sat, Dec 15, 2012 at 2:29 PM

Watch this:

Then read this.


Comments (35) RSS

Oldest First Unregistered On Registered On Add a comment
seatackled 1
She made me cry when she explained how she told her students she loved them.
Posted by seatackled on December 15, 2012 at 2:38 PM · Report this
puppydogtails 2
You can oppose generous public-sector compensation and benefit packages, support the limiting of union powers (including automatic dues deduction) and want more competition in schools ... and not be in favor of gunning down children or think that teachers are bad people who can't do the right thing.

Seriously, this Manichean bullshit -- us vs. them, angels vs. devils -- has got to END on both sides, left and right. ENOUGH. Red State. Daily Kos. Powerline. Balloon Juice. Ugh.
Posted by puppydogtails on December 15, 2012 at 3:04 PM · Report this
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn 3
Wait for it: School Rampage Truthers will reveal that these killings have always been an inside job, to promote teachers unions and take away your guns. Malkin and Huckabee are the "sane ones" you know, so somebody has to out crazy them.
Posted by Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn on December 15, 2012 at 3:04 PM · Report this
@2 is exactly right. This is textbook straw-man snark.Malkin was using metaphor -- and didn't use phrases 'terrorist' or 'parasite'-- and other attributions are commenters on FreeRepublic. You know damn well you can find equally unhinged examples of anonymous left-wing rhetoric without even trying.
Posted by Billy Chav on December 15, 2012 at 3:12 PM · Report this
emor 5
I think the Republicans hit a new low when they demonized teachers during the Wisconsin fiasco. As someone whose mom, grandmother, wife, sister-in-law, and mother-in-law are or were teachers, I found their ignorance of the passion and dedication of the vast majority of teachers to be galling. Not to mention telling of the kinds of arguments they would stoop to in order to achieve their disastrous political objectives.
Posted by emor on December 15, 2012 at 3:22 PM · Report this
The problem is that certain Republicans are getting lots of media time to claim that teachers ARE "bad people".
And that those teachers are "using" students to further their goals and those goals are about depriving the children of their education.
Which makes it difficult to laud the teachers for being heroes when they protect the children from being killed.
Cognitive dissonance.
Posted by fairly.unbalanced on December 15, 2012 at 3:24 PM · Report this
despicable me 7
Kaitlin, real American hero. I have a family full of teachers, every single one of them would have done the same for their "kids".

Shaking my head at this. Expect more violence in Sandy Hook, CT, cause Westboro Baptist is coming to town.…

Posted by despicable me on December 15, 2012 at 3:33 PM · Report this
can someone show me the difference between the language used by nutjobs like limbaugh and malkin with the RTLM? cos i don't see any...
Posted by douchenozzles_suck on December 15, 2012 at 3:41 PM · Report this
@2 Most people who want the first 3 things you listed don't like teachers - or claim they like teachers but not the unions. Secondly, most people who want the first 3 things you listed are also people who fall for the bullshit that the right-wingers and the neo-liberal elites repeat day after day after day - without proof OR research.

Public-sector compensation is much less than private sector. I've worked both - as have many family members and friends - and all made far less in public sector jobs than in private sector jobs, but stuck to them because they had slightly better benefits or promised more job security. It's a choice most make - private sector= more money but less job security and public sector is less money but more job security. Are there a few overpaid public servants? Hell yes, but there are WAY more overpaid private sector workers, particularly in those upper echelons, like those CEOs pulling in millions of dollars to run a company into the ground and still walk away with their golden parachutes.
As an example - at my education level, I could be making at least $40K more than I do in a public sector job. It's a risk I may take again later in life, but not now. My brother - in the same field as me but in a private company with only a BS degree, is making about $20K more than me. He has more paid time off than me, but otherwise his company has a benefit package that is pretty much on par with mine. However, his company laid off some people about 6 months ago, so he is aware that the probability of a layoff is greater for him. But he is single, does not own property, and is fine with that. I'm not.
As for competition in schools? That's a business-based ideology being applied to schools. There is no research that shows it works to make public schools better, but plenty of evidence that shows the aftermath - more selective admissions in charter schools, more lower-achieving kids being counseled out of charter schools and dumped back into the public schools - usually without the funding since the charter school has pocketed that.
In business, you start with the best components you can afford to make your product. You pitch those products that don't come out right, and you control most of the factors that go into the production of that product. That can't be done in public schools. Public schools start with flawed products - kids who come to school hungry, beaten, hurt, drunk, drugged, neglected - you name it. Then teachers are blamed because they cannot take these flawed products - these kids - and turn them into reading/writing/computing machines that test well and prove to the world that America is superior because of a fucking test score. You see, public schools have to educate everyone, not just the higher achieving upper class white kids that charters love. So the competition bullshit is flawed at it's very premise, but repeated often by those who claim they don't dislike teachers and public education, but want to make it better.
Want to make it better? Look at society. Schools are a direct reflection of society. Look at the number of hours kids spend with their parents as opposed to school, and see who has more influence. Look at how many hours kids spend at home in front of the TV or the computer. Competition - aka charter schools - only weeds out the motivated parents from the less motivated parents. It does nothing to improve education on the whole.
Posted by StuckInUtah on December 15, 2012 at 3:44 PM · Report this
@2 said it all.

Posted by feel sorry for Danny on December 15, 2012 at 3:49 PM · Report this
Anyone else notice a correlation between thinking teachers are grossly overpaid and not thinking evolution is real, bad at math (at least as regards taxes) and general historical ignorance?

Maybe they are speaking from experience? Maybe their teachers really were?
Posted by david on December 15, 2012 at 3:51 PM · Report this
1. many teachers are competent, also, nice people. props to them.
2. some are heros and amazing.
3. now get this, it's hard to have a brain isn't it: SOME are NOT. Some are neither comptent nor nice nor heros.
4. QED like all professions they need some mechanism for weeding out the incompetent. instead of lockstep seniority. so, it can be a test, or it can be the principal evaluates.
5. teachers as a group and the wea firmly reject the concept of merit and performance based hiring and firing. in this they are wrong, despite the fact that some are nice, and some are great.
6. none of this has aught to do with charters. you can be for or against charters for other reasons.
7. none of this has aught to do with funding, except for many of us, the lack of performance structures and incentives means more funding is less likely, obviously voters don't want to give more money to a system that's failing too many.
8. all of the above exists in a world where for 20% of students, our schools fail. fail. utterly. this has lots to do with gun violence, drugs, gangs, bad parenting, absent parents, history of centuries of racism, poverty, our lack of a social democratic political economy etc etc etc but so what? those things need to be addressed, but none of it means we shouldn't have merit systems in place now. and none of it means a given level of pay or pensions may or may not be overly generous. so this us versus them demand to WORSHIP ALL TEACHERS EQUALLY is total bullshit, and the attempt to hijack the gun tragedy to attack education reform is not only stupid, but unfair and a bit cowardly. how would merit hiring and firing mean that this teacher would not have been a hero in this shooting? please explain. and remember to write clearly and stop with the sloppy thinking, okay kids?
Posted by reverse mcarthyism on December 15, 2012 at 3:54 PM · Report this

There are fantastic teachers, to be sure.

But settling for less pay in return for job 'security' for some is a formulae for mediocre people parking in a job punching the clock until they retire. And those folks make the worst teachers possible. And unions protect them.

Parents who have had to send their child off to spend 7 hours a day with such a teacher soon develop a white hot hatred of the system that enables them.

Until unions develop the will to screen and cull their own membership expect a high percentage of parents to see unions as the #1 enemy.

And your assertion about public service compensation is out of date and inaccurate.

Public "service" pensions are especially extortionist and, in fact, public service unions finally managed to do to local/state/federal government what their private sector brethren did to every industry they infected; bankrupt it.

It is true that the main problem with American education is the quality of the homes from which the students come. And teachers are often unfairly blamed.

But place the blame for that problem on Liberal policies (hello Murphy Brown!) that have destroyed the American Family.
Posted by Sorry. Real America is on to your scam. on December 15, 2012 at 4:22 PM · Report this
@12 You ASSume that principals are competent evaluators. You ASSume that good and bad teachers can be weeded out by a TEST. Your assumptions are wrong.
Merit pay was used in the past, then dumped because it is ineffective. That is why they oppose it. How do you judge the monetary worth of a teacher who teaches PE vs a teacher who has gotten a loaded class of difficult students? Who is worth more - a special Ed teacher or someone whose classroom is full of kids from Laurelhurst and gets great test scores? Test scores have a direct correlation to socioeconomic status, less so to teaching,
In Utah, the Mo teachers got the merit pay. Or the male teachers. They were definitely not the best teachers. But then, who defines who the best teacher is? A teacher may be great for one kid, but not so great for another. Does that mean they are a good teacher one year and a bad teacher another year?

And then there's this:…
Posted by StuckInUtah on December 15, 2012 at 4:37 PM · Report this
JensR 15
@11 Haha I was just about to say that :D
Against evolution and thinks that the best way to create quality teachers is to strip them of any protection and the right to get paid.

Posted by JensR on December 15, 2012 at 4:38 PM · Report this
I think it's criminal the way the right wing shouters demonize teachers. Teachers get stuck, these days, with teaching kids all sorts of things their parents should be teaching them, along with the curriculum. Parents have come to expect a seven-hour babysitting service, with no penalty to the student for antisocial behavior, inability to focus, low attention span, or any of the other deficits a child may have. In return, they bloviate about teachers being parasites, overpaid, and yadda yadda. The receptionist at my last office made more than a grade school teacher, and she was barely able to transfer a call to the correct person. Teachers obviously don't go into the classroom looking to get rich; you have to love kids and love teaching to put up with the kind of abuse you get as a teacher, from the kids, the parents, and the community at large.
Posted by Calpete on December 15, 2012 at 5:47 PM · Report this
Some Old Nobodaddy Logged In 17
@2 I get it, you don't like the us v them thinking. I agree wholeheartedly. But you need to be more discerning upon how it operates. As fairly.unbalanced points out, you offer a false equivalency. People are mad at the hyperbole that is offered by Fox News & on other major media channels. There is no equivalency on that scale, in any public arena, anywhere else in America.

And calling bullshit on bullshit is *not* continuing the 'us v them' dichotomy.
Posted by Some Old Nobodaddy Logged In on December 15, 2012 at 6:21 PM · Report this
Supreme Ruler Of The Universe 18

If these teachers were in a charter school, would your umbrage be as passionate?
Posted by Supreme Ruler Of The Universe on December 15, 2012 at 8:11 PM · Report this
Dan. Glad your married in Seattle and all now, but why are you putting up this? Not very persuasive. Blond teacher strikes me as somewhat self-absorbed and proud of herself on account of her luck that her classroom wasn't in the crosshairs. Clip edits notwithstanding, teacher seems sort of fake. Less than hours after the massacre but she shows no despair, no sense that actual death happened in the same building. Video was edited (clearly) to eliminate some of that. But mostly, she looked like an average actress.
Posted by NealB on December 15, 2012 at 8:11 PM · Report this
Supreme Ruler Of The Universe 20

I wasn't there. I have no idea of the agony. But...I agree. I saw the interview with her and it was one that disturbed me.

There were a few others...and I guess it was that even for people who were there they seemed rather distant from it. She almost went into a kind of teenage "yeah, it was brutal man, but you know what..." sort of rap. That kind of narrating on events one was participating in as if they were having an out of body experience and watching it happen to themselves on YouTube! I encounter it many tomes, especially with "young people" and it frightens me.

I was not really seeing emotion...human emotion...and I realize that there is shock...until I saw the father of one of the victims crying.

The reason these OOB reports bother me is because I see that attitude...that way of going through the world, as possibly what lead the shooter and others like him to be able to commit these crimes.

Recently scientists met at the UW to discuss the question Are We Living In A the Matrix. I cannot say. But more are if so.
Posted by Supreme Ruler Of The Universe on December 15, 2012 at 8:22 PM · Report this
The demonizing of teachers is all about unions and corporate America's desire to rid this country of unions. It is as simple as that. And anyone who follows the news - the real news - knows it. It is no secret except to those who follow the propaganda promoted by those who have hated unions and labor and FDR's New Deal since it began. Thus the assault on all the programs that benefit those of us who work for a living. It is easy to start with women. Mark my word: it will be nurses next. Then firefighters and police. The Heritage Foundation and it's members hate all organizations that benefit the working people.

Teachers and public education are the first victims. Well, not really the first. Just the first in public service. When are we going to stop it and take our country back?
Posted by northender on December 15, 2012 at 8:52 PM · Report this
What a bullshit post. Talk about politicizing a tragedy. Am I allowed to disagree with extortionate public union tactics while not thinking that children should be gunned down? Where is the clamor for higher pay for mall employees after the shooting in Oregon last week?
Posted by qrq on December 15, 2012 at 8:53 PM · Report this
Catalina Vel-DuRay 23
It's so nice to see my fellow sloggers critiquing television interviews with victims, and opining on how the people ought to be responding, especially when their reaction would have probably been to sell the kids out to try to score points with the killer. And it's always fun to see the troll so agitated.

The conservative mindset (such as that is) loves victimhood, and loves the idea of being a victim, but only on their own terms. Dead soldiers and civilians are the best, because they can ascribe thoughts and positions to them and not be held accountable. Plus, monuments make great backdrops.

They love the first responders, and the people on the front line, until those people ask for some help in dealing with what they've been through - then they just become ingrates.

The truth is that teachers are villainized and portrayed as lazy and indifferent by the right, and have been for years. Their thought leaders do it because they are cynical, and know it will appeal to their idiot followers. The idiot followers buy into it because, well, they're idiots.
Posted by Catalina Vel-DuRay on December 15, 2012 at 9:11 PM · Report this
MK1 24
Thank you for this Dan. Myself and other teachers are absolutely distraught for our colleagues in Connecticut and are still figuring out how to talk to our students about this on Monday.

Your correlation between the right wing's demonization of teachers as lazy and self-interested as compared with the heroic actions of the teachers in Connecticut is spot on. I've experienced multiple lock-downs in my career (usually due to a shooting in the neighborhood) and in every classroom you would see children huddled in a corner with their teacher in front, protecting them with her body. So yes, I'm exceptionally offended by those who say we don't care about our students because we want fair wages for what we do.

And to those criticizing the traumatized teacher being interviewed by the media- fuck your noise.
Posted by MK1 on December 15, 2012 at 9:40 PM · Report this
#19, you are terrible. You are dissecting an interview with a teacher who was saving her students' lives?

Posted by westello on December 15, 2012 at 10:50 PM · Report this
seatackled 26

We've all seen how self-absorbed and empty of compassion and empathy that particular segment of the population is.
Posted by seatackled on December 15, 2012 at 11:20 PM · Report this
OutInBumF 27
As a member of a family of teachers, the RRR's demonization of teachers and the public school system really pisses me off. There is not a teacher I know that isn't dedicated to their students, their learning and in many cases the home life of the kids, as a means to understand how better to teach them. The pay ANY teacher gets is pathetic. I remember taking classes at college while working for high tech as a lowly network administrator. Posted positions for experienced teachers were offering 1/2 of what I was making, and that was at a college level. ONE HALF! Yet these scumbags say teachers are being greedy for wanting a living wage. GRRRR!
Posted by OutInBumF on December 15, 2012 at 11:54 PM · Report this
@19 and 20 (NealB and Supreme Ruler of the Universe)--

Please don't look at someone who just lived through a massacre and complain that she "shows no despair" or "seemed rather distant." That is an absolutely common, standard, and even healthy reaction to trauma. People who have been through something too frightening or violating or terrible to stand usually dissociate from their feelings-- mentally put all the terror, grief, and fury aside, because they need to function. They need to think rationally enough to, say, hide their students and lie to gunman about their whereabouts-- and you can't do that effectively while you're experiencing feelings as intense as what you're actually feeling. So the emotions get locked down, and they don't necessarily all come out the second the experience is over. For really severe things, it can be years until people let themselves feel the fear, anger, and sadness of terrible experiences.

So, yeah, you're not seeing people look upset. But that's probably because what they went through upset them more than it upset people who didn't go through it, not less. They'll (hopefully) show that later, when they're sure they're safe, not right now, hours after the event, with television cameras in their faces.

Also, maybe you could try not being an asshole to people who just lost friends and colleagues, and nearly died horribly?

Posted by Gaudior on December 16, 2012 at 6:48 AM · Report this
McJulie 29
@19 @20

First of all, critiquing people who have just been through a tragedy for the way they come across is an extremely low, asshole thing to do. There is no "correct" way to respond to stress and trauma.

And second, I have no idea what you're talking about. She's clearly barely avoiding busting into tears at every second, almost breaks down a few times, and wipes away tears throughout. What on earth do you think traumatized people are supposed to seem like?
Posted by McJulie on December 16, 2012 at 8:15 AM · Report this
@19 and 20: You guys are assholes. Have you ever BEEN through a terrible situation? Because if you had, you'd know that people in mourning go through their day like everyone else, except that random things make them cry. Things can still be funny, they can still explain stuff- but certain things will trigger their feelings and they'll start crying. Constant crying is not a thing that happens.
Posted by alguna_rubia on December 16, 2012 at 10:51 AM · Report this
What a heroic, brave and gallant person she is. When called upon, she gave it her all. She has that mental gift of disipline under duress. She truly loves those children. She made me, 66 year old charliebickle, cry!
Posted by charliebickle on December 16, 2012 at 11:54 AM · Report this

While I appreciate the vid and the interview of the most gallant and brave individual, etc., and the dailkos article, they both fall into the same category, forever allowing the soulless and brainless clods to frame the argument, to frame the debate.

This is exactly what you did, Dano, when you first came out in support of Bush's illegal war for oil --- evidently you were woefully ignorant of the multi-generational evil of the Bush-Walker family (and couldn't be effing bothered to research it), so your assumption was that their colonialist resource war was justifiable?

Please stop allowing everyone who is either super-rich, or represents the super-rich, to frame the discussion, to frame the false arguments, etc.

There is no fiscal cliff, Dano! There is no Red Team v. Blue Team, Dano! There is no media, Dano --- just as there is no economy; the sooner you witless fools will attempt to wrap your heads around this, the sooner you may realize that those who own the banks, and the oil companies, and the weapons manufacturers, and the biopharmaceuticals, etc., etc., etc., are the very same group of people, who also own their MSM, or MainStreamMythology they spew at the rest of us 24/7.
Posted by sgt_doom on December 16, 2012 at 12:33 PM · Report this
I am a teacher, and I know for a fact that I would do the same thing. I'm a little lady, and I once blocked a 6'3" non-custodial parent from taking his son off campus. He wasn't armed, but I didn't know that. He body-checked me, but he didn't get my student. I would do it again in a heart beat.
Posted by monkeylover on December 16, 2012 at 5:56 PM · Report this
The demonization of teachers is equal opportunity. I do believe Arne Duncan (Obama's minion) supported the firing of a whole high school staff.…
Posted by Linda J on December 16, 2012 at 9:07 PM · Report this
Catalina Vel-DuRay 35
Yes, because one instance of a "minion" saying something is equal to 75 years or so of organized campaigning by the GOP.

Hasn't that soft spot on your skull closed up yet, dear?
Posted by Catalina Vel-DuRay on December 16, 2012 at 11:46 PM · Report this

Add a comment


Want great deals and a chance to win tickets to the best shows in Seattle? Join The Stranger Presents email list!

All contents © Index Newspapers, LLC
1535 11th Ave (Third Floor), Seattle, WA 98122
Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | Takedown Policy