Monday, February 23, 2015

CTU Supports Racist?

Why Does CTU Support Racist Alderman?
By Jim Vail

The CTU endorsed Ald. Michael Zalewski who equated Section 8 renters to criminals.

Certainly the following headline in the Chicago Sun Times was glaring enough - Southwest Side alderman resorts to race-baiting to save job!

"In one of the more blatant bits of fear-mongering I have seen by a Chicago political candidate in some years, a Southwest Side alderman is attacking one of his election opponents for her supposed interest in Section 8 housing," wrote columnist Mark Brown.

Brown further wrote that Ald. Michael Zalewski has been sending out mailers in the upcoming election that his opponent, Polish-born real estate agent Anna Goral "supports Section 8 Housing that would allow criminals to move in next door."

What is even more glaring, however, is that this is the very alderman the Chicago Teachers Union endorsed.

Certainly, the CTU did not most likely make this endorsement with the understanding that their candidate would make such race-baiting statements during this election (has he ever in the past?).

The CTU prides itself on fighting racism all the way - whether it's going to war against the Chicago Public Schools policy of suspensions that unfairly targets minorities, filing a discrimination lawsuit (before taking office) on behalf of the many African American teachers who lost their jobs or calling out the closing of public schools a "racist" attack that focused primarily on African American schools on the south side. 

The fact that Ald. Zalewski was one of the few endorsed candidates who did not get a dime from the CTU is comforting, somewhat.

But the policy the union has to back "winners" can come at a certain price that will question the CTU's integrity.

For example, the union's Political Action Committee recommended the endorsement of former Mayor Richard Daley's nephew, Patrick Daley Thompson, that the delegates debated and shot down. Delegates pointed out that their candidate supports charter schools, vouchers and is the machine's face front and center!

The union tried unsuccessfully to endorse a Daley for alderman.
Certainly getting more involved in the political fight is no wine and roses affair. Politics is ugly, and making friends with arch enemies like House Speaker Mike Madigan, who's mission is to destroy the union in most respects, doesn't seem to make sense.

But unions need to make these deals and play ball, it is argued, or they will get smashed in the 'system.'

But when you are focused, as a union, on fighting for minorities that the school system serves, and your 'endorsed' candidate resorts to race baiting a la the old school system, then there's time to stop, reflect, and perhaps demand that the union distance itself and admit it made a mistake.

Remember - it's never too late to say you're sorry!

No comments:

Post a Comment