Teachers

What America Needs Today: Another Mr. Rogers To Promote Love, Compassion, Empathy, And Tolerance

Last night, this blogger and author had the privilege to attend the documentary–“Won’t You Be My Neighbor?”–about the life and career of Fred Rogers, known as Mr. Rogers on PBS for over thirty years, on his show “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood”.

Fred Rogers was a beautiful human being, who promoted good self image among children, emphasizing how each of us is unique and special.

He promoted love, compassion, empathy, and tolerance on issues of race, religion, sexuality, gender, and disabilities.

He made the lives of innumerable children, now adults, far better than they might have been without his show on PBS.

He helped children through the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy in 1968; the Challenger Astronaut Disaster of 1986; and the evil of September 11.

He promoted people accepting each other as they are, and looking for the good in people.

His show, through puppets and supporting cast, made children and their parents happier and more secure than they would have been otherwise.

In a time as now, in 2018, we so desperately need a Mr. Rogers to overcome the horrible sins of hatred, greed, selfishness, racism, nativism, misogyny, Islamophobia, antisemitism, prejudice against the disabled, and the poor of all backgrounds, represented by the total evil of Donald Trump and his supporting cast and base.

We need a political leader who will come to the forefront and overcome the cancer and absolute evil of Donald Trump, and take us in a different direction.

It was hard to watch this documentary and not have tears and despair, but there are other Fred Rogers out there, maybe not yet showing up in government, but playing their smaller roles as teachers, nurses, doctors, social workers, and others dedicated to making life better for all of us, not just the elite wealthy who could not give a damn about anyone but themselves!

Tom Hanks will portray Fred Rogers in a film to come out in 2019, entitled “You Are My Friend”.

No Way Should Teachers Be Armed On School Campuses–Totally Insane Proposal Of Donald Trump!

Donald Trump has proved yet again that he is a total moron, with his suggestion that some teachers and coaches and administrators should be armed on school campuses.

I propose we try that with Trump, by taking away his Secret Service, giving him a handgun and put him out in public, and I guarantee he would not last long, particularly with the amount of hate millions of Americans feel about the 45th President.

It is asinine and preposterous to think a person not trained in law enforcement, even if he or she knew how to use a firearm, would have the courage, and mental and emotional stability to actually fire a weapon and kill someone, which when it happens, often destroys that person with guilt, even if he or she is killing a bad person.

Also, if the police arrive and a person has a gun, how are they to know whether such person is a good guy or a bad guy?

And in trying to use a firearm, others, including innocent students, could become victims by accident, increasing the emotional shock on the person using the firearm.

When police come across someone who is a threat with a firearm, they ask for backup forces, as otherwise it is a suicide mission.

Schools are not supposed to be war zones, and even a teacher or administrator could have an emotional breakdown, and suddenly become a threat to students and fellow teachers, although not originally intended.

To think that a firearm protects anyone in any situation, consider those who lock up their weapons away from their children, as otherwise they might gain access and shoot themselves or their friends or family by accident.

But if weapons are locked up, what good is that when one faces an intruder and cannot open the lock and set up the firearm in a short period of time while emotionally distraught over the threat that exists?

Additionally, teachers are meant to teach, and are not paid well enough to take on an extra burden, when tens of thousands are already abandoning the classroom, disgusted at the lack of respect and decent pay, benefits and conditions of work, and often have to spend out of their own salary for school supplies.

Schools need to have more money and support, but in a crisis situation, law enforcement personnel are the only alternative, along with better security measures on the campus itself.

Once again, Donald Trump has no clue, and in reality, little compassion and empathy for anyone, only concerned as always about himself, and no one else!

The Tragedy Of Detroit: A Sign Of The Future?

Detroit, the “Motor City”, the fourth largest city in population (1.8 million) in 1950, has declared bankruptcy, and has shrunk to 700,000 population in 2010.

This city, which was the center of industrial expansion, success, and prosperity in the first two thirds of the 20th century, is the largest entity in America ever to declare bankruptcy!

At least $18 billion in debt, the impact of this bankruptcy will likely cause further decline of the once great city, which is now a total disaster in relation to housing abandonment, crime, destruction of education, and the total deterioration of the quality of life for those who remain.

And the idea that those who have devoted their lives to working for the city–as cops, firefighters, teachers, social workers and others–will now be likely to lose their pensions in their old age, is totally unconscionable, totally immoral! Why would anyone ever wish to work another day for a government that will not keep the legal agreements to its employees who devote their lives to service, often at much lower rates than workers in the private sector?

If this can happen in Detroit, is that a warning sign that other cities, and state governments, could also cancel all obligations to their workers, and leave them impoverished in their old age?

Are governments now to become no different than corporations who too often cheat their workers out of a hard earned pension, while the elite at the top continue to enrich themselves in a greedy manner?

If this becomes a trend, it will not be surprising if we see people unwilling to work for government at all levels, and that will lead to chaos and anarchy, as we cannot allow all government workers, or any of them, to be so totally mistreated and disregarded as if they are willing “slaves” who can be kicked around as no better than garbage!

The True Heroes Of Natural And Man Made Disasters: Teachers, Nurses, Paramedics, Police Officers, Firefighters!

Again, with the Oklahoma and Boston Marathon tragedies, as so many others, it is PUBLIC servants–teachers, nurses, paramedics, police officers, firefighters–who are the true heroes, doing beyond the call of duty to rescue and save lives!

But yet, these public servants are constantly pilloried and condemned, if they demand a living wage and decent benefits, as appreciation for their services, while people in the world of business make outrageous salaries and perks on Wall Street, and think that they deserve what they get, despite having messed up the economy, causing the Great Recession of 2008, as they have in every recession since the Great Depression!

We are told to worship Jamie Dimon of JP Morgan Chase, and other bank CEO’s who, by all justification, should be in prison for their actions!

We allow the Koch Brothers and the Walmart heirs to run rampant without any consideration of how they exploit their work force, and these are just examples, not the only ones.

We have Apple and Walmart and Target and numerous other companies which exploit foreign workers, and do not give a damn about safety or a decent living wage for these poor women and men who died in the disaster recently in Bangladesh!

It is time to hold these corporate leaders and companies accountable, and stop complaining about public servants who deserve respect and dignity and better pay for their sacrifices and dedication to the people they serve!

Why Do So Many Ridicule A Person, Such As Barack Obama, Who Becomes A Community Organizer?

One of the most frustrating comments this author has heard over and over again from people who worship money and the corporate world, is that Barack Obama was a “community organizer”, said in a derisive manner!

Why is this so?

Why is it that enriching oneself in equity capital, being a “vulture capitalist,” as Mitt Romney has been, even stated so by his own Republican opponents in the primaries, is so honored, while someone, who wishes to help the poor, the disadvantaged, the people in the ghettos who have difficult lives, is ridiculed? Is it because there is the image that only minorities, not white people, are poor, which is far from the truth!

Why is our moral and ethical standard based on being wealthy, even if one exploits workers, shuts down businesses, acts in a privileged way, has no regard for people who one hurts, and sees things only in dollars and cents?

Being a “community organizer”, or being in the Peace Corps, or being a teacher, a nurse, a social worker, is a great experience of caring about others, helping others, doing (without being religious), God’s work on earth!

We are supposed to be “our brother’s keeper”, not our “brother’s exploiter” for personal gain!

Public Servants: An Insurance Policy For The Present And The Future, Underappreciated!

The attacks on public servants being encouraged by Fox News Channel, Congressional Republicans, Republican Governors, and Presidential nominee Mitt Romney are reprehensible!

The idea seems to be to “trash” the value and essential nature of having police officers, firefighters, teachers, nurses, and other public servants, who serve willingly, but are mistreated, underpaid, and now are told many of them are not “necessary”, because the wealthy cannot pay more taxes!

It is the same attitude toward military personnel, who are sent into harm’s way, told they are appreciated, but discover otherwise when they need health care and other services, and are told they must wait months for service, or just be asked to go away, as they are used in public rhetoric and then abused in reality by lack of concern and care!

It is the public servants of this country, both civilian and military, that make this country what it is–a safe, secure country in the present and the future, as well!

Police officers are there to protect us against crime; firefighters are there to protect us from urban blazes and massive fires such as the horrifying forest fires in Colorado right now; teachers at all levels are there to educate our young and our adults and even our senior citizens, so that they have a future that is enriched by knowledge and skills; nurses are there to do much of what doctors fail to do, including saving lives in emergency rooms and assisting in surgical procedures; and military personnel are dying and being wounded for us overseas to protect the homeland!

That is MUCH more important than whether a corporation had record profits in the last quarter; or whether banks made more by bilking consumers out of greed; or whether Mitt Romney and other “vulture” capitalists managed to make even more money to add to their obscene amounts of wealth which they protect from taxation by having secret accounts in the Cayman Islands, Switzerland, the Bahamas, and elsewhere!

None of the above are at all patriotic, or caring about what is good for America!

All they are concerned about is the ALMIGHTY DOLLAR, as they worship the acquisition of wealth, and celebrate greed and selfishness, at the expense of their fellow citizens and their nation! They are defended by the Republican Party and conservatives, who like them, should be ashamed of themselves, but don’t have the capacity to have a conscience or concern for their fellow human beings!

Return From Vacation To Horrible News! Mitt Romney, And The Ugandan Catholic Bishops!

Having just returned from vacation in Charleston and Savannah, and only having contributed one entry about the Wisconsin recall election results while on vacation, the author returns to horrible news, making one wonder about humanity!

Mitt Romney has made it clear that if the Supreme Court rules against the Obama Health Care law later this month, he will not protect the millions with preexisting conditions, who would, effectively, left out of health care by such an action.

Romney has also made it clear that he feels the message of Wisconsin is that the American people do not wish to fund more jobs for badly needed teachers, firefighters, and police officers, an unbelievable conclusion based on one state’s results, and a slap in the face of the American people, and the honorable professions that are so essential to the nation, and are being treated as if they are “servants” who can be hired and fired as Mitt Romney loves to do with everyone, due to his obscene wealth, greed, and selfishness!

Mitt Romney is becoming worse by the day, a true monster who comes across as the worst GOP nominee in American history, with his lack of humanity or concern for the needs of the American nation!

The thought that this man without a conscience could actually become President is totally sickening!

But then, the news gets worse, as we learn that in Uganda, the Catholic bishops are endorsing legislation to kill gays or put them in prison for life, a bill already promoted by the evangelical Christian movement, and setting up a situation that would lead to a Holocaust not that different than the one in World War II against gays, as well as Jews and other groups, which was ignored by the then Pope Pius IX!

Pope Benedict XVI needs to condemn this endorsement immediately, and crack down on the Catholic bishops of Uganda, but will he? He is condemning the “radical” statements of nuns who are promoting a open mindedness on many issues within the Church, so can one be assured that he will take steps to crack down on the hate of the Ugandan Catholic bishops?

This is just more proof how organized religion has lost its humanity, and is about to make gays the new victims of a modern day Holocaust in the name of God!

This news about Mitt Romney and the Ugandan bishops is enough to make one wish to go back on vacation, and shut out the cruel world we live in!

Obscene Vote In US Senate On Jobs For Teachers And First Responders: How Can This Be Justified?

In an attempt by Senate Democrats to pass part of President Obama’s jobs plan, a proposal for $35 billion in spending on hiring or retaining 400,00 teachers and first responders was brought up in that chamber last night, resulting in a 50-50 tie, with all 47 Republicans and Democrats Mark Pryor of Arkansas, Ben Nelson of Nebraska and Joe Lieberman of Connecticut joining them in opposition!

The jobs bill had been touted by Vice President Joe Biden as essential to help promote education and safety and security in local communities, and it would have been financed by a half penny tax on millionaires on incomes over one million dollars, meaning if one had two million in income, he would pay $5,000 in extra taxes, a small amount of contribution when compared to income and the public need!

It is shocking that Joe Lieberman would vote against this, and that Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins of Maine would vote against this as well!

At a time of the worst economic conditions since the Great Depression, the Senate minority and even a few Democrats seem tone deaf to the reality of what is going on in America!

These 50 Senators are to be condemned for playing politics and being short sighted in a time of need!

Senator Jim DeMint, Teachers, And Sex!

Conservative Republican Senator Jim DeMint of South Carolina has called for the banning of gay people and sexually active single women from the profession of teaching! πŸ™

Apparently, sexually active heterosexual single men and married men and women who cheat on their mates should have the right to teach, however!

So Senator DeMint wants to tell people they cannot enter a field because of their personal lives in their off time, although he conveniently leaves out the reality of sham marriages and divorces that demonstrate just how much heterosexual men and married couples are engaged in similar behavior to those groups he wants to ban from the profession!

Should we have the right to interfere in the lives of gay people and single women, and treat them as special cases that should not have the same right to private lives that heterosexuals and single men have? πŸ™

Is this not a new form of discrimination that is again connected to the religious right which wants to impose its beliefs and narrow minded ideas on all of us? πŸ™

What a nerve Jim DeMint has to wish to promote discrimination and take away a person’s right to privacy! πŸ™

As long as a teacher at any level performs his or her profession in a proper way, his or her private life should be off limits to any intervention by Senator DeMint or anyone else!