Republicans in the legislature have begun to spin their response to the massive teacher rally that will take place in Raleigh tomorrow. “Misinformation” is being spread, they argue. “Union thugs” are organizing the march, not real teachers. Regardless of the spin, it’s going to get interesting on Jones Street. This is no small rally.
As a whole, there seems to be a massive divide between the thoughts of knowledgeable Republican legislators and the feelings of teachers. You could hear it on the airwaves this morning in Fayetteville:
On a local talk show, Representative John Szoka (R-45) expressed amazement and laughed when asked why teachers are so unhappy that they are marching on Raleigh.
Szoka couldn’t figure it out. He argued teachers should be satisfied with numerous raises they have received over the years. They “are pretty doggone good,” he said.
To bolster his argument, he compared teachers to farmers, the latter he claims have had a 40-50% decrease in income due to crop prices (soybeans, corn, etc.). Teachers should be happy that they didn’t fall back as well. “There’s people hurting everywhere,” he said. To give more money to teachers, you would have to take it from someone else. “There’s not enough for everybody.” He quickly dismissed raising corporate income taxes to pay for teacher raises.
Szoka ended the interview stating he didn’t want people to “blow up his cell phone.”
Teachers, if you’re in Raleigh tomorrow, make sure Rep. Szoka can hear you.
If he’s not listening, remember, it’s better than picking corn.