Democrats Locked Out of Democrat Town Hall on Education
A common grievance among ordinary citizens is that leaders in government and the ruling class won’t listen to what they have to say. That’s why it’s so odd for Democrats—who gush they’re transparent and open to all people—to lock dissenting voices out from their forums.
Reports are coming out of the Democratic National Convention about two education activists, both Democrats, who were not allowed in to see the pre-screening of the education reform movie Won’t Back Down in Charlotte this past week.
Pam Grundy [not just a mom as one article suggests, but a PhD historian and professor] and Carol Sawyer of Mecklenburg ACTS, an organization opposed to charters and the demonization of teachers, were kept out of a town hall in which Michelle Rhee of StudentsFirst and others were speaking.
From the blog The Raw Story:
Grundy recalled that after initially being denied entry to a Students First [sic] screening of the movie Won’t Back Down on Tuesday, a representative personally invited them to join because they were drawing negative attention by passing out flyers on the sidewalk outside. But before they could view the film, organizers again changed their minds and ordered a security guard to escort them from the building.
Grundy says the movie doesn’t reflect reality. It’s a feel good scenario where everything is hunky dory in the end, but that’s not how a parent-trigger policy enacted in a town in California turned out. There’s virtually no track record to make the assumption parent-trigger laws being considered by several states have any merit.
“Won’t Back Down is the story of two moms who come together — they have a school that’s not working, the kids are not learning — they try to use this new law where parents can vote to kick out the [teacher's] union and to transform the school into a charter,” Grundy explained. “And so that’s what they do, they work to try to convince parents and teachers to vote to turn their school into a charter, and then they succeed in this vote and at the very end the schools become a charter and everything seems to be wonderful.”
“In our minds, that actually doesn’t work. It’s a really ineffective strategy. It’s divisive, it’s never actually worked in practice,” she continued.
But here’s the disconnect. While Grundy works against the reformers’ changes in school policy, and realizes Obama and his Department of Education chief Arne Duncan are in the reformers’ camp, she can’t bring herself to oppose Obama himself. Bizarre.
“We are deeply, deeply disappointed in President Obama’s education policy,” she insisted. “I worked my tail off for President Obama four years ago. I mean, I knocked on doors, I made phone calls, I got to shake his hand the night before he got elected.”
“But then when he appointed Arne Duncan and they started to do this whole corporate reform thing, I really started to feel like, you know, federal policy was one of the big obstacles I had to fight to try to make my son’s high-poverty school better. … It wasn’t the grassroots, build-it-from-the-ground-up sort of approach that he had taken as a community organizer.”
Open Democrats like Grundy may be deluded about their man in the White House, but Democrats like the self-described “very, very lefty liberal” Michelle Rhee know exactly what they’re doing and have closed their ears to the populace. Rhee and her ilk are ramrodding their agenda down the throats of truly concerned citizens.
How is being anything other than completely open to others’ views going to help our children in the schools?
The so-called reformers only hear what they want to hear, and you and I have no voice in their elitist world.