The mayor called some community leaders together yesterday for a meeting. He asked for support for cathie black. He made promises to get help to their communities.
What Mayor Bloomberg and the Taliban have in commonThen there was this piece from a NYC HS teacher who compares Bloomberg to the Taliban.
I hear all the time from people about how teachers are afraid to speak out. Funny, but I meet a hell of a lot of them who don't seem to be afraid. What is it? A moral imperative that overcomes fear? I don't really know. I was a big mouth but people tell me in these times I couldn't do that. If I couldn't I don't think I would have remained in the system. I feel very lucky to meet so many amazing teachers today that are out there. Seung is one of my favorites. Someone I want in the fox hole with me.
If you ask Mayor Bloomberg or any Taliban member why they are fighting the battles they do - you will hear heartfelt declarations of their ideology. Invariably they invoke the betterment of the "people". The Taliban, not trusting that the people know what's good for them, rely on religious police to go around measuring the length of men's beards, and imprisoning any woman caught outside without a male chaperon.
Likewise, Mayor Bloomberg scoffs at parents who protect neighborhood schools he determines as failures. On radio shows, he decries these parents as essentially - idiots. Every year, his progress reports elevate the standard for A's, B's, and C's - thus assuring the closure of many schools. He absolves a democratic board of education, citing instances of corruption, while somehow rationalizing his "donations" to campaigns and foundations to sway votes, as mere charity.
Fear is the tool that both use to get what they want. The Taliban made soccer fields into sites for executions against those that broke their laws. The mayor threatens the closure of schools, the firing of principals, and if he had his way, the mass firing of seasoned teachers. Fear is such an effective tool that very few of those oppressed actually speak up.
The societal model they both promote is a two tiered one. The Taliban sets up one society for men, and another for women. Men need not face any competition for jobs and schools from women. Women walk in the shadows, denied all that men enjoy.
In Bloomberg's world, charter schools and small schools gloss over the needs of English Language Learners, Special Education Students, and low achieving students - and often push them out - whereas public schools do not. Charter schools get brand new technology and small class sizes while district schools are forced to teach in cafeterias and overcrowded classrooms.
Ultimately, both have the delusion that they will make society better. The Taliban will say that rape statistics have decreased - since women are not allowed on the streets alone. They will say that crime is lower, since more men will keep their jobs not taken by women. They will point to the fact divorce is almost unheard of- since women don't have the means to strike out on their own.
Bloomberg's ideal society will be constructed in is own image. It is a world that does not allow for plumbers, hair dressers, police officers, electricians, auto-mechanics.... And the only measure of success is to end up putting on a suit and looking down on the rest of society. The Taliban's justification is religion, Bloomberg's justification is his egotistical vision. So what if the "people" have to suffer for the higher ideal of utopia?
It is no wonder Mayor Bloomberg travels to China and lambasts the elected officials of our beloved yet imperfect democracy. He could only dream of a communist structure where all his directives concerning sodium, cigarettes and unions were put into practice. I'm sure the mayor also praises the Chinese system of education as well - where national standardized tests are required to get into middle schools, junior high schools, and high schools.
See below the fold for links to a series of articles on Black & Bloomberg from The ExaminerThe Taliban unleashes their fear through their guns while the mayor unleashes his through his cash. In Afghanistan, the biggest dog on the block rules, in our land, it's the biggest bank roll. When the majority of people accept their chains and, one day, even forgets the chains are there, then these visions of utopia will be reality.Seung Ok- Teacher
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