The Wisconsin teacher sick day ruse: send them to detention

Wisconsin teacher 'sick day' ruse and teaching youth right from wrong
 
I think it's a shame, that we cannot "fire" terrible parents, or fine them, and that money go into a college fund or something useful for their children. Failed parents -- not those whose kids are embarrassed by them, but really awful parents -- deserve to be called out, not humiliated but shown that they need to be trained, or retrained. I am grateful that the worst of the worst -- those who apparently harm their children -- do lose their children to various state services agencies. Sometimes. Blessing and a curse, naturally, that the state then puts the children into an often horribly insufficient foster home system.
 
(Do I need to note this? I shouldn't have to, but, for clarity...) I think it is heartbreaking that children of miserably bad parents are from birth in a cycle of negative and/or impersonal influences. It is also disheartening to see them face life lessons at the hands of teachers who seemingly are less concerned about their influence on youth, the excellence of their job performance, than they are of their ability to relegate those issues to tertiary importance.
 
Wisconsin teachers, and others such as in Indiana, in resistance to what MIGHT be a too-strong retraction of labor union functions, have ceased to be teachers for a few weeks now (and counting?) to express their distaste for the state's new Republican governor, who with a GOP-strong state House is trying to pass the legislation. That legislation is to require the teachers to pay more of their own benefits out of their salary. They don't like that.
 
As in 41 states, in Wisconsin government workers get more benefits than private industry workers, salary and otherwise. Is this a failure of private companies to treat employees reasonably, or is it a practice of government leaders -- politicians and managers, directors, etc. -- of grinning back-patting of those who work closest to them and, overwhelmingly in the case of Democrats, those who shove lots of union dues-gained money into the election campaign coffers)? I choose the latter, because while there's plenty of imbalance in private business, too, at least they are accountable to some things, including a profit margin, where government seems to spend what's no longer there. And I won't even bother to go into the strategic, cowardly abandoning of their posts by state house Democrats, because that's too easy to mock.
 
Aside from all the potential lessons in this tussle, there is the matter of what these teachers, by their example, are displaying for the young they have unceremoniously granted days off while the teachers strike.
 
What's more, these teachers are striking in reaction to what is claimed to be a budget matter, a tightening of the belt as many of us have felt in recent years. The teachers are letting everyone know that their regular pay raises and guaranteed state pensions are more important than healing any budget woes. That budget matter could turn into a mass layoff rather than a spreading of less "freebie" benefits. Then there's this: doctors have been giving the teachers fake -- read that: FAKE -- doctor's notes to protect them from losing pay during the strike. The teachers and the doctors ought to be brought up on professional disciplinary charges.
 
What lesson does that activity teach the young? That so long as you screw the system and look out primarily for yourselves in a crass manner, and you can find conspirators to help you cynically mock the system, don't waste a moment wondering if it's prudent or moral repugnant. Or, in short, "screw everybody else, kids!"
-- jR
 
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