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Colorado Springs Socialists Speeches: Love Lives Here Rally and March for Public Education
March for Public Education - July 22, 2017
I wanna start by saying that I don’t think Betsy Devos was appointed to her position because of her family’s campaign contributions, or that her brother runs Blackwater.
We all know she bought her way into the government so that she could sell out our educational system to the highest bidder. Do you really think she cares about all those teeny tiny parochial schools that pump out deeply religious folks that won’t ever buy products from her family’s pyramid-scheme company anyway??
And Those school voucher programs she keeps prattling on about?
Vouchers will NEVER put the families of poor students in the financial position in which they would be able to cover the remaining cost for attendance in private schools like Kent Denver School. Okay … you got a voucher for about $1,500. Tell me, how are planning on coming up with the remaining $26,500 ??? Not to mention, private school teachers often make far less money and have much worse benefits than public school teachers.
Betsy also throws out “school choice” like families have the financial means and free time to drive children all over creation to attend the school of their choice. I have done this for my children and TRUST ME it takes a MASSIVE amount of time and money - not only on gas but also on school fees and uniforms - to accomplish this goal. Time and money that many poor and lower middle class families just don’t have.
Make no mistake: The only reason Betsy DeVos cares - “CARES” - about education is because her friends wanna open a whole, whole bunch of for-profit charter schools that will make them rich. They won’t even have to provide quality education, they will just have to maintain the illusion that they are teaching children SOMETHING.
(( THIS MESSAGE HAS BEEN BROUGHT TO YOU BY AMWAY ))
My mother has been a music teacher since 1964.
Way back then, in the early 1960s, school districts still appreciated music. They still appreciated art. Before all this standardized testing nonsense, They still thought that music and art were just important as math and English. In 1964, There were rooms dedicated to band, orchestra and vocal music; even elementary schools dedicated rooms to art and music.
My mother is still a teacher, but it’s a lot different now. Somewhere between 1964 and today, we have lost ALL appreciation for the arts. Last year, she taught at three local elementary schools. Only one school - in the Mountain Shadows area - has a dedicated music room. At another school, in the same districts, space is so tight that children wanting to learn to play a stringed instrument had to attend an after-school program.
And why is space so tight? Because there is no money to add on to the school, and the school is not allowed to have a portable on the grounds.
And this isn’t the school’s or even the district’s fault. It is the fault of ever person in this city, this state and this country who has ever voted against adequately funding community schools.
And about that:
Homeowners should not be allowed to vote against property tax increases that fund schools just because they feel like installing a new deck or kitchen instead. Schools must be adequately funded, which means that maybe you will have to go without new cabinets this year. Maybe the landscaping that came with the house will have to suffice so that the community you live in will prosper.
Each student must be funded equally, WITHOUT EXCEPTION.
And being in a city, we’re lucky! Many small towns have had to close their schools because they can’t afford to keep them open. Instead, one town may host the school for 5 or more other towns.
We must mandate integration in all public k-12 schools, but not through busing.
There is no reason that students should be dragged many miles away from their friends and neighborhoods. There is no reason that we should force them to spend far too many hours riding a school bus.
Yeah, I can’t imagine BIG OIL and car manufacturers' eyes didn’t light up with dollar signs over THAT legislation.
Busing was an utter failure that hurt students and communities. Instead, we must fund every student equally regardless of their community’s ability to pay property taxes. We must strive to make every school in every neighborhood the best it can be.
We learned many years ago that taking children out of their neighborhoods did nothing to help them or their communities. All we did was give more money to affluent white schools in affluent white neighborhoods, while we watched the schools the kids were being bused away FROM flounder.
We can integrate the schools by not only encouraging more people of color to become teachers, but by paying for their education - and the education of all new teachers - so that these new teachers will not be burdened by oppressive student loans. We must encourage teachers to live in the communities in which they teach so that they will have personal ties and investments in the success or failure of those communities.
Additionally, tasty, filling breakfasts and lunches CAN be provided to EVERY child in EVERY k-12 school FREE OF CHARGE. This is AMERICA. We would have no problem filling this order.
STOP allowing companies to profit off pre-made crap in our children’s cafeterias. Again, THIS IS AMERICA, there is plenty of food to go around, and there is no reason that corporate American needs to have its grubby little fingers in the education pie.
And …. sorry to say it, but we waste far too much money and time on high school competition sports. The money used to buy new uniforms and equipment every year would be better spent on … you know … needed repairs to the buildings, books, science equipment and teacher salaries.
AND FINALLY, we must BAN the military from high schools. No more ROTC, no more recruiters! We should be preparing our young people for their future. Not all kids want to go to college, but we should not be allowing them to be sacrificed as war fodder.
We MUST foster children’s passion in auto mechanics, wood and metalworking and other technical skills that will truly benefit them. We must implement internship programs so that kids can get out and learning in the real world instead of learning how to take standardized tests.
Our educational system is a mess right now, mostly because it is grossly underfunded.
EVERY ONE of Betsy DeVos’ terrible ideas will push this system closer not to collapse, but the worst forms of competitive consumerism. If we care about the future of this country, our communities and sincerely want better for our children, and ourselves we must #RESIST these destructive policies. We must DEFEND our communities against these toxic policies that suck the very humanity out of them.
When our lives are under attack, what do we do? STAND UP, FIGHT BACK!
Love Lives Here Rally - August 6, 2017
Ninety two years ago, a book widely dismissed as PATHETIC and TEDIOUS was distributed to a weakened and volatile nation
It was often described as POORLY WRITTEN, POPULIST GARBAGE. That book was Mein Kampf.
Many Jewish newspapers in Germany at the time IGNORED Mein Kampf altogether, claiming that they didn’t want to waste their time with “such nonsense.”
One journalist, a Jew who had converted to Catholicism, wondered how, based on his LONG and PATHETIC book, an OBSESSIVE PSYCHOPATH LIKE HITLER could draw thousands of people to his political rallies.
Yet another review - THE MOST SCATHING REVIEW of Mein Kampf - concluded with the following statement:
“One puts Hitler’s book aside with a feeling of satisfaction … As long as the völkisch movement cannot find better leaders, much water will flow down the stream before they will be victorious in the the land of poets and thinkers.”
I stand before you today with the GIFT OF FULL HINDSIGHT of Russian POGROMS, KRISTALLNACHT, the WARSAW GHETTO and CONCENTRATION CAMPS. I stand before you with the GIFT OF FULL HINDSIGHT
of SLAVERY, THE DEVIL’S PUNCHBOWL, THE RED SUMMER OF 1919, THE CHURCH BOMBING IN BIRMINGHAM, AND THE CONTINUED GENOCIDE OF BLACKS BY OUR POLICE.
I stand before you with the humility to learn from the mistakes of others. I stand before you with the humility to learn from great leaders like Malcolm X, who rightly criticized those people who stood on the sidelines.Those people who OBSERVED when they should have ACTED. I will NOT tolerate hatred in our city. I will NOT tolerate INTIMIDATION that intends to OPPRESS the diverse people of our community.
Unlike my forebears, I will not IGNORE or DISMISS obvious warning signs that CLEARLY show our community is rife with racists and anti-semites. My privilege DEMANDS that I stand in solidarity with our diverse communities, not only against CITIZENS that seek to harm them, but more importantly, against AN ESTABLISHMENT that allows corporations to EXPLOIT, police AND MILITARY to MURDER, and courts to KIDNAP and HOLD FOR RANSOM those same diverse communities.
We must use our privilege to recruit others into our CRUSADE, and we must not only join hands with diverse communities in prayer, but we must stand in solidarity with them as comrades in arms. To spurn this, our DUTY, is to embrace injustice and tyranny.