Tuesday, July 31, 2007

What Is The True Purpose of the NEA?

Why does the teachers union exist?

I believe that a union should look out for the best interests of those who support it financially, and should focus on their pay, benefits, and working conditions.

It seems, however, that the NEA disagrees with me. It apparently sees itself as a union cum social services organization, a left-wing organization of the highest degree.

What prompts me to say this? Why, their very own resolutions, posted on their very own web site. There are some 300 resolutions there; how many of them pertain directly to pay, benefits, and working conditions? Even if you like or agree with some of the resolutions, why should a labor union--financed in part by extorted dues--be involved in these issues that have nothing to do with pay, benefits, and working conditions?

Seriously, go read just the table of contents for their resolutions.

Tell me why a labor union should be looking out for others people's children instead of (or in addition to) its members. And if you think that a labor union of teachers should be looking out for students--as if that's not the responsibility of the elected school board--explain the 2nd paragraph of Resolution B-75 to me, which punishes students whose parents pay taxes for public schools but don't want their children educated in public schools.

See if the NEA itself lives up to Resolution B-11 with regards to white people or Republicans, both of whom are specifically left out of the list of people who should be respected. Explain how the NEA can support affirmative action and other set-aside programs--and why it disliked the school segregation cases ruled up on by the Supreme Court in June--when it claims Part D of Resolution B-11.

Tell me why a labor union to which I'm compelled to give money should give a darn about "Equity for Incarcerated Persons", which is Resolution B-23.

I'll skip a hundred or so resolutions--what possible interest could a labor union have in "Statehood for the District of Columbia", Resolution H-11? or in the "International Court of Justice" or the "International Criminal Court", Resolutions I-2 and I-3? or "Protection of Senior Citizens", Resolution I-35? or in "Businesses Owned By Minorities and/or Women", Resolution I-54?

I could go on but I'll stop there. While the ideas represented by those resolutions may (or may not) be good ideas, the NEA has no business concerning itself with them--or in using my money to do so. Pay, benefits, and working conditions, and nothing else.

Want to know why I have so much disregard for the NEA? There are only two reasons:

1. the fact that I'm compelled to give them my money, and
2. the things on which they spend my money.

The second point I've addressed in this post, the first I've addressed in so many others:

Every (non-military) American has a right to join a union. Every American has a right not to join a union. Every American should have the right not to be required to support a union financially.

That NEA gets a cent from me is an injustice of the highest order.


Anonymous said...

Just another reason I'm glad I live and teach in Texas. I belong to no unions. I am a member of the Texas Music Educators Association, through which I pay an additional $30 a year to get a $1,000,000 liability insurance policy. I never have understood the concept of teachers unions that don't lobby for teachers.

Law and Order Teacher said...

Teacher's union. Hardly. Left wing advocacy group and arm of the Democrat party. For sure. When did it become acceptable to compel teachers to belong and contribute to a group that does very little for teacher's working conditions. That is judicial activism at its worst. Do you think elections don't matter? There needs to be judges that will give us our freedom back. Eminent Domain, compulsory union dues, where do we live?

Darren said...

Truer words have not been spoken.

Anonymous said...

I always thought it was a bizarre situation when teachers' unions support abortion. After all, when kids are aborted, then fewer teachers are needed, fewer teachers, less "dues" paid to teachers' unions!

-- chicopanther

Darren said...

I always wondered how anyone could tolerate the hypocrisy that says we want parents involved in schools--but not if they're going to keep their kids from having abortions, in which case we support letting kids get abortions without parental consent or even notification.

allenm said...

In a pure democracy, like the NEA, it isn't just the tyranny of the majority you have to watch out for but the tyranny of the minority as well.

A reasonably-sized minority that's forceful has a pretty good chance of getting elected to positions of power; people have lives, who can keep up with all the union politics and what does it really matter as long as we get a decent contract and a reasonable pay bump?

Once they're on top they change the rules to make it all but impossible for the democratic process to turn them out of office. It's the rational thing to do if you want to have the resources of the organization at your disposal.