Corporate money men love Philadelphia’s black children so much that they are altruistically fighting to provide an Ivy League-caliber education to every one of them. And they’re doing this despite the interference of the underworked and overpaid fat-cat teachers who have no professional training in education, no official certification in education, and no day-to-day experience in education. And the “poor people’s champion,” Mitt Romney, is selflessly leading that battle for little Jamal and little Keisha, just like his hero MLK used to do. In fact, as he stated in 2007, Romney actually “saw his father march with Martin Luther King Jr.” Umm … I … ah … just did a little fact-checking and found out that I kinda got all of that completely backwards. Let me explain.
Mitt Romney Doesn’t Care About Black People
To paraphrase Kanye West, Mitt Romney “doesn’t care about black students.” I draw that conclusion because black students are black people, and according to Romney’s lifelong-held beliefs, black people weren’t really worthy human beings—because they were “damned … to serve … (their) master till God chooses to remove the curse of Ham.” (In other words, till 1978, when Jesus finally decided to tell him and his fellow Mormons that that shit wasn’t right.)
In fact, to this very day, neither he nor his church leaders have issued a written repudiation of this despicably racist doctrine. And he doesn’t care about the parents of those black students either. That’s why he not only refuses to repudiate Donald “Obama Is a Scary African” Trump but also stood with him last week in Las Vegas while accepting $2.5 million in racist blood money. Moreover, despite documented proof from the Department of Justice regarding the racially disparate impact of voter ID laws, Romney publicly endorsed such laws in late 2011. In addition, as CEO and one of the three founders of the $66 billion Bain Capital vulture—I mean venture—corporation, he saw nothing wrong with the fact that Bain has absolutely no black management or supervisory staff persons. And he currently lives in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire, Park City, Connecticut, and La Jolla, California, with black populations of 0.2 percent, 0.6 percent, and 0.8 percent, respectively. Oh, by the way, Romney attended a private school that had just one black student and Brigham Young University, where there were maybe three.
These facts might have something to do with his aversion to affirmative action. Oh, and that King marching thing I mentioned earlier? Complete bullshit. Never happened. Romney pulled that lie right out of his gilded ass. Speaking of Dr. King, during an MLK Day photo-op in 2008, Romney stood with a group of black children. And did he recite the “I Have a Dream” speech? Nope. The “Letter From a Birmingham Jail” speech? Nope. The Nobel Prize acceptance speech? Nope. Instead, he chanted “Who let the dogs out? Who? Who?” He actually said that racist bullshit. In public. In front of cameras. Like it was cool. No! It wasn’t cool. Not at all. But worse than that, he saw—and still sees—absolutely nothing racially inappropriate about it. And this is from the man who last month declared that the educational failure of this country’s black children “is the civil rights issue of our era.” Well, if it is and if he is the person to lead the protests, then we shall never overcome. And most certainly not with the impressive ability to completely recite the hip hop dog chant. Talk about a missed opportunity during a teachable moment.
Mitt Romney Doesn’t Care About Labor Unions
Romney also doesn’t care about labor unions. If it were up to him, America would go back to the days when bosses could pay as low a wage as they liked, demand as much overtime as they preferred, tolerate no grievance procedure whatsoever, and provide no benefits at all. But he does care about corporations. After all, as he so profoundly stated last year, “Corporations are people, my friend.”
But I must be quite clear. In his world, there are two kinds of people. One kind is the corporate people. He loves them because he is them. The other kind is the human people. He has no love for them, as he made quite clear this year when he candidly said, “I like being able to fire people who provide services to me.” That’s why he doesn’t like labor unions and wants to raze them—especially teachers’ unions. He recently stated that “the teachers’ unions are the clearest example of a group that has lost its way … Our job (is to fight for our children) … And our job is getting harder because the unions wield outsized influence in elections and campaigns.”
Outsized influence in elections and campaigns? Is he talking about the Koch Brothers and the NRA, or is he out of his effin’ mind? He doesn’t care about labor unions because he knows they are part of the 99 percent who are effectively organized and who therefore can stand up to him and his one-percent gang. He knows that they can and will demand the wages and benefits that they and their children need to survive. And he knows that they can and do demand the resources needed to effectively educate all middle-class and poor students, like the 63 percent of Philadelphia’s public school population—i.e., the black kids. Speaking of poor students and poor people, Mitt let us know what he really thinks about them when he said just five months ago, “I’m not concerned about the very poor.” No shit.
What Mitt Romney Would Do to Philadelphia Public Schools
If Romney has his way, quality public schools and fair wages for those who work there will be a thing of the past. When public schools are handed over to corporations, to whom are the businesses accountable? Who sets the salaries? And who knows the salaries? And what certifications are required to teach in general?
As reported by Liza Featherstone, an education columnist for the Brooklyn Rail, “The U.S. public school system, once a model for the world, is under sustained attack by the nation’s elites. Philadelphia, the latest casualty, is getting ready to sell off its schools (a total of 64 within the next five years)—and their governance—to profiteers and snake-oil salesmen.” Furthermore, “Philadelphia is already the most privatized system in the U.S.”
Now don’t get me wrong. I don’t mean to imply that all charter schools are bad and that all public schools are good. In fact, some of my best friends run charter schools and do it very well. But they are the exception, not the rule. As noted in a 2009 Johns Hopkins University study, within five years of the 2001 state takeover of Philly’s schools that led directly to the corporatization of many of them, “the schools under private management were academically underperforming the public schools.”
Romney’s visit to Philadelphia a few weeks ago was as much of a malleable fraud as he is. And thanks to the several massive local protests during the past few days, everybody is beginning to see him for who he really is. He is indifferent to black children. He is hostile to protective unions. And he is a conspirator in the corporate racket to whack public schools.