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Saturday, February 23, 2019

Florida teachers and unions have to fight for the right to strike while there is still something worth fighting for. (rough draft)

West Virginia teachers strike, win more money and better working conditions.

Arizona teachers strike, win better pay for teachers and support staff.

Colorado teachers strike, win pay increase and resetting education budget to pre recession levels which if happened in Florida would see a 1,600 dollar increase in school funding. 

Kentucky teachers strike win increase in salary.

Los Angeles, Kentucky, North Carolina, Kentucky, Denver teachers all strike and teachers win every time.

West Virginia strikes again and this time they didn't strike for more pay but to stop the privatization of their schools and they won again.

Every time teachers strike they have won.

They also win with the support of the people because not only do most families send their children to public schools they support them as well. They know that teachers working conditions are their children's learning conditions. 

Now you might be saying teachers can't strike in Florida because it is in the constitution and they can lose their jobs and pensions. Well friends, the Florida Constitution is not some hallowed list of laws and if you want proof of that just look at how Tallahassee has treated the class size amendment, what they have done with vouchers and charters, how they have criminally under funded education and how they have usurped the power of school boards.  No friends Florida's constitution is more like suggestions scribbled down on a napkin.

I am not an expert on the law but I know The United States has something called the supremacy clause and it states  that all laws made furthering the Constitution and all treaties made under the authority of the United States are the “supreme law of the land.

It seems to me not being able to strike violates the 1st (freedom of speech and assembly), 5th (due process), and 8th (unusual punishments) amendments.

This is the thing, I believe my union and district have done as good as a job as possible when it comes to pay and benefits, but the sad truth is there is only so much you can squeeze out of a rock. It's Tallahassee that is squeezing teachers and school boards alike, in their zeal to privatize public education and destroy the teaching profession, who are the true villains of the story. I would think most school boards would be receptive of strikes because they are the victims of a legislature that wants to privatize education too.

If teachers can't strike it doesn't matter how many red for ed t-shirts we wear, letters to the editor we write or rallies in Talley we have because the republicans that run the show aren't moved by things like decency, fairness and what's right for teachers and students and I for one would like somebody to challenge the law that says we can't strike. What are we waiting for friends, the house is already on fire and that noise you hear is Tallahassee fiddling.   

Friends we have to fight for public education and the right to strike because because nothing else we have done has mattered.

It's only the future of public education and the teaching profession which are on the line.

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