|Karen Lewis, the head of the Chicago Teachers Union, admits that white communities in Chicago provide the bulk of the tax-revenue that fuels the Chicago Public School system (only eight percent white enrollment)|
In the wake of recent school closings and teacher layoffs, Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis took aim Tuesday at the two R’s of her education reform effort — racism and revenue.
Lewis, speaking to the City Club of Chicago, did not directly criticize Mayor Rahm Emanuel. But she went after his kitchen cabinet of educational advisers as wealthy “elites” from the venture capital and corporate world and questioned what “rich white people” know about what’s in the best educational interests for minority children.
“Members of the status quo, the people who are running the schools and advising the mayor on how best to run our district, know what good education looks like because they have secured it for their own children in well-resourced public and private institutions,” Lewis said.
“When will there be an honest conversation about poverty and racism and inequality that hinders the delivery of an education product in our school system? When will we address the effect that rich white people think they know what’s in the best interest of children of African Americans and Latinos, no matter what the parents’ income or education level.”
Lewis called for enactment of “progressive taxation” that would tax the wealthier at a greater rate compared to the state’s flat-rate income tax. She also said “bold leadership” would end corporate tax subsidies and loopholes. And she repeated earlier calls for a reform of tax increment financing districts and enactment of a financial transactions tax.
Asked if the city schools also should boost property taxes, Lewis said, “Yes.” But, she added, ““If you look at a majority of the tax base for property taxes in Chicago, they’re mostly white, who don’t have a real interest in paying for the education of poor black and brown children. We don’t want to say that out loud.”
Lewis maintained the city’s public schools have made investments in schools closer to downtown at the expense of other neighborhoods.
She said she feared the announced layoffs last week of 850 workers, including about 500 teachers, as a result of public school closings makes her fear “it’s just the tip of the iceberg” for a system facing a $1 billion deficit.
“Where will this impact be felt the most?” she asked. “In predominantly African American communities.”
WBBM Newsradio’s Nancy Harty reports, at a luncheon on education reform, Lewis told members of the City Club that Chicago is the most segregated city in America.
Lewis said minority neighborhoods are disproportionately disinvested by the city, and see more foreclosures and school closures.“It’s as if there were a concerted effort to make sure that these are not walkable, thriving, healthy communities,” she said.
The city of Chicago has ordered its firefighters to provide security for public school students walking to and from class through the city’s gang turf, according to an official memo from the Chicago Fire Department that WND obtained.
“[I]t is critical that CFD assist in providing the children with reassurance during their travels,” the memo reads. “This will be accomplished through our public presence, being good ambassadors to the children of Chicago and providing support when and if they require it.”
But a Chicago police officer who insisted on anonymity said, “If the parents are so concerned about their children’s security they should be walking their own kids to school.
“Let the reverends organize the parents to walk their kids to school but don’t waste the precious resources of a police officer or fireman to do what parents should be doing,” he said.
That officer believes that there is little hope of high-crime urban communities acting together for their own good.
“As far as police wondering where parents, churches, local leaders or community organizers are we know where they are. They are taking care of enriching themselves at the expense of the taxpayers while they rely on the city and the police to raise their children.
“These communities do not know shame,” he said, and their “demented morality” wreaks devastation.
As part of the effort to protect students going to and from school, the Chicago school system began a Safe Passage program. However, community leaders are not satisfied, and they have directed their ire at Mayor Rahm Emanuel.
“He says that he wants to turn around the city of Chicago, make a new Chicago. Does that new Chicago mean no black folks?” one asked.
|Karen Lewis is the perfect image for Black-Run America. Perfect.|
Say it with us again: white America owes black America nothing.