UTLA (United Teachers of Los Angeles) President Cecily Myart-Cruz rejected the state’s plan to provide LA County Schools with $6.6 billion in incentives to reopen before April 1, according to Fox News.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom and state lawmakers arrived at this deal on Monday.
In the video below, which must be seen and heard to be believed, Myart-Cruz labels the plan to return to in-person learning a “recipe for propagating structural racism.”
Myart-Cruz said, “If you condition funding on the reopening of schools, that money will only go to white and wealthier schools that don’t have the transmission rates that low-income, black and brown communities do. This is a recipe for propagating structural racism, and it is deeply unfair to the students we serve.”
Minority communities, she believes, have been “unfairly targeted by people who are not experiencing this disease in the same ways as students and families are in our communities…If this was a rich person’s disease, we would’ve seen a very different response. We would not have the high rates of infections and deaths. Now, educators are asked instead to sacrifice ourselves, the safety of our students and the safety of our schools.”
The CDC has found that some racial and ethnic minority groups have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19. For example, one study found:
34% of deaths were among non-Hispanic black people, though this group accounts for only 12% of the total U.S. population.
These conditions are known as social determinants of health. Long-standing systemic health and social inequities have put many people from racial and ethnic minority groups at increased risk of dying from COVID-19.
The state of California separates its counties into four tiers, ranging from the “yellow tier,” which means a county is experiencing minimal spread of the virus, to the “purple tier,” which indicates widespread COVID-19 transmission in the county. LA County falls into the latter tier.
Still, according to the LA County Public Health Department, “cases among Latino residents dropped from a high of 2,400 per 100,000 people in January to 453 cases per 100,000 people as of February.” That represents an 81% drop in one month.
By comparison, “black residents had only 234 cases per 100,000 residents and Asian and white residents had about 180 cases per 100,000 residents” in February.
That said, the CDC has found that minority groups have suffered more from school closings than other students. their children are falling behind more than children in other groups. The CDC attributes this to reduced access to child care and unemployment opportunities for minority parents.
In other words, it’s even more important for these students to return to school.
Yet the powerful teachers’ unions continue to reject calls to return to the classroom.
Because these unions are such large donors to the Democratic party, leaders believe they can throw their weight around with impunity.
Is it time to fire all the teachers? I’m sure there would be no shortage of applicants to fill these positions.
Some of us are old enough to recall how then-President Ronald Reagan handled an August 1981 air traffic controllers strike. He gave them 48 hours to either return to work or be fired. Two days later, he fired over 11,000 of them – for life.
Now, it’s a lot harder to replace an air traffic controller than a teacher. In fact, many of us could probably walk into a classroom and teach with little or no training.
California public schools have remained closed for nearly one year.
People like Myart-Cruz spend her 15 minutes of fame crying about conditions in her state that existed long before the coronavirus reached our shores and will persist until politicians in the Democrat-run state take action to address them.
Instead, she should focus on the children who need to be back in the classroom.
And the minority students need this most of all.
Elizabeth is the founder and editor of The American Crisis. She is also a contract writer at The Western Journal and a previous contributor to RedState, The Dan Bongino Show, and The Federalist. Her articles have appeared on HotAir, Instapundit, RealClearPolitics, MSN and other sites. Elizabeth is a wife, a mom to three grown children and several beloved golden retrievers, and a grandmother!