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On Hating Teachers

June 10, 2010

Americans hate lots of things: foreign languages, taxes, losing weight by exercise, neighbors, the idea of community, affordable healthcare, critical thinking, and so on. But if there’s one thing that they really hate, it is teachers. Walk into any cafe or barber shop in any state in this union and you’ll find out what’s holding America back: teachers. In no particular order you’ll hear some or all of the following:

● Teachers are lazy – they work only 9 months out of the year or if they’re professors they work…well, god knows what they’re doing, but it’s not a lot!
● Teachers are bad at their jobs
● Teachers are selfish
● Teachers are why public education is falling apart
● Teachers’ unions are evil (all of them)
● Teachers can’t be fired under any circumstances (because of the unions)
● Teachers are rich and make lots and lots of money
● Teachers hate children
● Teachers are poorly educated
● Teachers are all communists

In the interests of full disclosure, I’ve had an up close and personal view of this dangerous specimen for the better part of two decades, as my mother was a public school speech therapist for 30 years and my father has taught part-time in a Masters program at an obnoxious Ivy League school for over a decade, not to mention teaching and training social workers for decades. Only now as an adult have I learned to connect all the dots with what I saw in my youth with the popular knowledge I have encountered about teachers from my neighbors, friends, and co-workers.

Think about people like my mother. The woman was the first person in her family to get a college degree. Instead of becoming something respectable like a lawyer or doctor or venture capitalist, she decided to go into speech therapy…to help people. Not only did she waste her time getting a BA, she then got an MA on top it. And you can bet she got those degrees at a publicly financed state college (read: stealing tax payer money for a degree in do-good hippie-ism). Where did she decide to work? Not a private school or servicing the rich, but a New Jersey public school. This was clearly part of her plan to bilk the NJ taxpayer. She worked in public schools for thirty years – you can imagine what her pension looks like (then get a barf bag) given the fact the NJ Teachers’ Union has pictures of Lenin and Marx hanging in their HQ. That’s thirty years of helping little children learn to speak correctly. And sure most of that time was spent in corroding classrooms and, of course, there was the stint where they put her office in a trailer, but besides that, you can bet she lived the life of luxury in those public schools.

And don’t let the years confuse you – that’s thirty free summers too. As you know, teachers make so much money those summers are pretty much like the stuff you see on “Lifestyles of the the Rich and Famous.” When my mom wasn’t jetting off to places like the Bahamas on her summer salary, she was feeding her young children black caviar for lunch (I actually preferred the red, but hey, the black was for rich people like us). Not satisfied with a basic committment to the communist idea that all children had a right to a public education and learning how to speak, my mother then went to get a second masters to work with handicapped children. So she worked full-time, had two children, and spent her evenings getting a second MA. The selfish-ness knows no bounds. It’s this, “look-at-me-I-help-handicapped-children-and-I-raise-my-own-children” attitude that explains why more hard-working Americans hate teachers. When exactly did she have time for American activities like watching sitcoms, complaining about taxes, and eating Taco Bell? As for the easy schedule of teachers – my mother woke up at 5AM every day so she could drive an hour to her job, which she was at until 4:30, then another one hour to drive home. I’d be surprised if she wasn’t being driven in a limo paid for by NJ taxpayers money to and from work. Thank god our new fat, I mean, grand governor will end this nonsense once and for all.

And don’t even get me started on my father – social worker? Therapist? Graduate school professor? These people are given membership cards of the Communist Party upon graduation. Trust me. The guy then had the nerve to spend a majority of his time when not working with families, teaching. Yup, training and replicating more save-the-world-types like himself. The scary thing is the guy was committed to being a social worker and teacher despite the fact he made even less money than the communist NJ public teachers for most of his career. Anyone with that sort of non-profit driven logic to chosing a profession should not be trusted under any circumstances. No one can possibly have such pure motives as to want to help others and teach without getting something back monetarily.

And you can bet many other teachers are like my parents. I can think of few that have taught me over the years that fit the bill. What drives these people to get up everyday? Why do they constantly talk about the students and children they teach when they are not on the job? Why do they put up with the abuse (well-deserved I’m sure) they get from parents and overgrown children posing as a graduate students? Why do they support the unions they belong to when they clearly don’t deserve the money they’re already getting? What drives someone to want to stand in front of a room with 20 or so sets of eyes staring at them and monitoring their every word and action on a daily basis? I don’t know the answers to these questions, but I can say this: clearly you must be ill if you want teach in a place like America. Even more reason to persecute them.

I often find myself thinking about how much better this country and world would be if more ideas from tax-paying, god-fearing, meat-eating Americans are put in place – like punishing teachers. Think of how much better America would be if people like my parents made less money and stopped stealing from taxpayers. Surely, America would be better if there were no teachers unions and less people like my mother and my father were enticed to enter the profession. We don’t need people with compassion – we need people who are willing be put through the rigors of endless job evaluations, little to no job stability, and have their job performance judged solely by the performance of their students. The destruction of the American education system has nothing to do with say the “responsibility” of parents and families (or their socio-economic conditions), a general crisis in our valuing of education, and the ubiquitous desire to stop funding schools – it has to do with that wealthy, selfish, mean-spirited person in front of the classroom. Down with teachers, up with America!

One Comment leave one →
  1. January 23, 2011 10:18 pm

    Speaking as one of those horrid teachers, I love this piece. Thank you for noticing the horrible work we have to do. Now I have to get back to grading papers. If I can make it to bed by midnight, I’ll have enough energy to revel in bilking the American taxpayer some more tomorrow.

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