by Mumia Abu-Jamal

[col. writ. 5/16/18] ©2018 Mumia Abu-Jamal

It began in America’s poorest states and is spreading like wildfire.

First came Kentucky, then a slew of others: Arizona, West Virginia, Oklahoma, Colorado — if you think about it, these are, for the most part, conservative states; and yet these are places where teachers, among the most poorly-paid state or local workers at a public institution, are walking out and uniting to demand better pay, and better state support for their mission — teaching kids.

In recent years the assault on teaching as a valued profession has left me shocked and disturbed.

Why this assault on teachers? Because teachers are presumed to be liberal, and tend to support Democratic candidates. There’s yet another reason: conservative hatred of public schools, and their affection for private and often charter schools.

But as teachers rise and fight back, they are winning, and showing that they — and labor — can fight back and win.

This insidious war against teachers is a war against those they teach: children. Often poor children. Often your children.

Good teachers can open minds. Surely, the nation needs more of that, right?

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