Unending Hypocrisy: Teachers Union President Holds In-Person Training While Advocating to Keep Schools Closed

(Lake Fong/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette via AP)

The hypocrisy of the progressive left “lockdown forever” crowd seems to have no bottom. While parents are desperate to return their children to schooling (something everyone else in the world has been doing all year long) and the suicide rates among America’s children skyrocket due to isolation, teachers unions are still selfishly refusing to send their members back to work.

They claim their safety is in jeopardy and that they are only “following the science,” even as they vacation and meet and travel around freely with no seeming concerns about their safety.

One of the most egregious offenders has been American Federation of Teachers President Randy Weingarten, who perplexingly still has a lucrative and elite job despite her anti-Semitic views that she unapologetically aired recently. She may have believed her own Jewish connections gave her cover, but it seems like pretty blatant anti-Semitism to accuse Jews of being an “ownership class” that wants to keep all their money and power for themselves.

From Fox News:

The controversy came in response to an interview published in the Jewish Telegraphic Agency last week, in which Weingarten was quoted as describing “American Jews” as “now part of the ownership class” in response to a question about Jewish critics of the teachers’ union’s power and influence amid a coronavirus school reopening fight.

“Jews were immigrants from somewhere else, and they needed the right to have public education,” she said. “And they needed power to have enough income and wealth for their families that they could put their kids through college and their kids could do better than they have done. Both economic opportunity through the labor movement and an educational opportunity through public education were key for Jews to go from the working class to the ownership class.”

She continued, “What I hear when I hear that question is that those who are in the ownership class now want to take that ladder of opportunity away from those who do not have it.”

Now comes word that Ms. Ownership Class herself is meeting in person with union members to train and discuss whatever it is wealthy, union presidents discuss while they work to keep teachers out of the classroom.

On Friday, Weingarten shared with social media a picture of an in-person meeting with AFT members. In the “selfie” photo, she is pictured with at least five other members of AFT in New Mexico.

The ratio on the Twitter post said it all. At the time of this posting there were barely over 100 “likes,” while there were over 900 responses, most of which excoriated the stunning hypocrisy of a union head whose organization recently told the CDC they did not intend to follow the science on the new “3-foot,” social-distancing guidelines.

In a recent letter to the CDC, Weingarten openly denied the CDC’s science.

We appreciate that the body of knowledge regarding the impact of COVID-19 in school environments is expanding, but we are not convinced that the evidence supports changing physical distancing requirements at this time. Our concern is that the cited studies do not identify the baseline mitigation strategies needed to support 3 feet of physical distancing. Moreover, they were not conducted in our nation’s highest-density and least-resourced schools, which have poor ventilation, crowding and other structural challenges.

One thing the studies were clear on is the need for layered mitigation if there is a shift to reduce physical distancing. Now that we have had a chance to review the research, we conclude that any shift from 6 feet to 3 feet must be accompanied by, at a minimum, universal and correct masking; effective ventilation; thorough cleaning of buildings; regular COVID-19 testing of teachers, staff and students; effective contact tracing and quarantine/isolation protocols; and the availability of vaccines to all people in schools who are eligible.

She went on to complain that it would be impossible for an adult teacher to maintain the six-foot rule for adults while simultaneously supervising a classroom in which only the three-foot rule applies to kids.

After months of mixed messaging and misinformation, consistency from our public health officials is a welcome change. But as educators with the expertise on how physical distancing works in schools, we have immediate logistical questions:

With the guidance that students can be 3 feet apart from each other but adults should remain 6 feet from children or other adults, what is the expectation for the teacher in a classroom—that she remain in one spot at the front of the room the entire day, not moving about the classroom?

How will paraprofessionals work in reading circles or other small-group settings? Does this also apply to bus drivers and school bus protocol—i.e., will students be 3 feet from each other on buses, but 6 feet from a bus driver or a bus attendant?

Let’s go to the game tape once again.

Mere days ago Redstate’s Nick Arama reported on Weingarten’s most recent tour to meet personally with educators across the country. She chartered a jet for the “essential” activity. Again, it is prudent to point out that Weingarten was flying to meet people personally to discuss the reasons why children cannot return to in-person instruction because of the danger.

So she’s one of those liberals that makes noises about climate change then goes and takes a private plane instead of a three-hour drive because it’s convenient to her for her meetings which she has to do in person, unlike those school kids who can just have their education relegated to Zoom.

Weingarten’s weak response was that she had to take a jet because she had a lot of cities to hit in one day, in order to personally thank her fellow educators.

You can’t make this stuff up. As Arama points out in her story:

Seriously, you can’t say thank you over the phone or in a Zoom meeting? How is this not non-essential travel? So this is important to be in person, but not so much kids’ education. And we wonder why people have issues with unions like this.

And this sure looks like she’s meeting or coming in contact with a bunch of people who weren’t wearing any masks.

We should not let up on this type of hypocrisy until every last child is back in the classroom, and it is time to double down on weakening the power of unions in public employment.

These people care nothing for your children. They are grifters struggling to hold onto a relic of the pre-technological age. Ridicule them, shame them, drive them to the fringes. They are not on your side or your child’s side.