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Monday, September 10, 2012

I stand with my brothers and sisters of the Chicago Teachers Union

I support my brothers and sisters of the Chicago Teachers Union who went on strike today.

Dr. Martin Luther King said: "History is a great teacher. Now everyone knows that the labor movement did not diminish the strength of the nation but

 enlarged it. By raising the living standards of millions, labor miraculously created a market for industry and lifted the whole nation to undreamed of levels of production. Those who attack labor forget these simple truths, but history remembers them."

Dr. King was assassinated going to aid Memphis Sanitation workers right to unionize. He understood unions don't weaken America, but strengthen America! Martin knew this, and stood with America's unions. This is a link to this piece of American Labor that never makes it on to the tests our children take. This is something they could respond to with grace, dignity, and full hearts.

Here we are today in Chicago come full circle.

What are these striking teachers asking for from Mayor Emanuel and his gang of fake education reformers?
Smaller class sizes,
One physical education teacher in every school,
One art teacher,
One music teacher,
And one librarian.
These are the thing our nation's school use to have before these so-called NCLB/RTTT education reformers sacrificed to pay for all their testing.

My thinking is Martin spirit lives on that CTU picket line.
Standing with his brothers and sisters in the Chicago Teachers Union,
Jesse The Walkingman Turner

If you are wondering what the Walking Man is listening to on his walk today it's

Bruce Springsteen's "We take of our own" 

I've been knockin' on the door that holds the throne
I've been lookin' for the map that leads me home
I've been stumblin' on good hearts turned to stone
The road of good intentions has gone dry as bone
We take care of our own
We take care of our own
Wherever this flag's flown
We take care of our own

From Chicago to New Orleans
From the muscle to the bone
From the shotgun shack to the Superdome
We yelled "help" but the cavalry stayed home
There ain't no-one hearing the bugle blown
We take care of our own
We take care of our own
Wherever this flag's flown
We take care of our own

Where the eyes, the eyes with the will to see
Where the hearts, that run over with mercy
Where's the love that has not forsaken me
Where's the work that set my hands, my soul free
Where's the spirit that'll reign, reign over me
Where's the promise, from sea to shining sea
Where's the promise, from sea to shining sea
Wherever this flag is flown
Wherever this flag is flown
Wherever this flag is flown

More lyrics:

Saturday, September 8, 2012

For George and all those union carrying first responders who ran into those towers on 9/11.

For brother George whose courage remains unquestioned,
For brother George who lives his life above the cheating,
My promise to you and the survivors and the fallen is I have not forgotten 9/11.
Reading this New York Times article below on cheating by

high achieving students. It mades me wonder about our nation's failure to give students something more than a test scores to look up to. 
Their is a real legacy left to us by our nation’s First Responders not rooted in cheating, but in the courage to do the right thing. This is what schools should be teaching not how to do better on some meaningless test. Article link:

The real legacy of Secretary of Education Arne Duncan's Race To The Top is not equity, or a closing of the achievement gap, but simply a culture of cheating. Neither NCLB, or this race of Duncan's has any moral foundation to it. His foundation is simply better test scores make better people. 
Let me say I disagree Mr. Secretary.

This coming Monday we shall remember those who lost their lives on 9/11/01.
Let's not forget that many of the ones running from those burning towers were most likely individuals with high test scores. The ones running out were the stock brokers, corporate lawyers, CEO's, and most likely not members of any of our nation's unions.
So brothers and sisters who ran in to save them?
Which ones dared to rushed in even after the first tower fell?
Which ones were walking people down the stairs as the world came tumbling down around them?
Let me tell who they were,
They were police officers, 
The emergency medical technicians, 
And fire fighters. 
The ones with union cards!
You know the ones whose test scores never won acceptance in to our Harvard(s) and Yale(s).
The ones like my old team mate Fire Captain George Bueno whose lost one of his crew.
Captain Bueno who had to fight for his pension for years after 9/11. 

I say test scores have nothing to do with making us better people, but hearts of courage do.
Imagine if our nation's public schools immersed our young people in a culture of courage rather than a race to the top.
America’s 21-st century is at a cross road in public education. One road calls us to follow ed reformers who consider children data and human capital. They offer a legacy of numbers.
The other road calls parents and teachers to leave something greater.  
We are being asked which legacy to we want our public schools to pass on to our nation's young. I want an American legacy rooted in courage not testing and cheating. I want a legacy of something greater than testing. I want future generations to know the courage of the ones who run in while others run out. 
Two from the heart brother George,
Jesse The Walking Man Turner

Monday, September 3, 2012

Happy Labor Day to the Chicago Teachers Union 2012

This one goes out to all my brothers and sisters in the Chicago Teachers Union this Labor Day. CTU is on the verge of striking, and they need our support.

I am asking teachers everywhere to post pictures on Facebook wearing red to show your solidarity with them. You can also buy a tee shirt, or make a donation to CTU:
 > <
President Kennedy said: "Our labor unions are not narrow, self-seeking groups. They have raised wages, shortened hours, and provided supplemental benefits. Through collective bargaining and grievance procedures, they have brought justice and democracy to the shop floor."
I say if you want self-seeking groups look to Wall Street and their political buddies.
Jesse The Walking Man Turner

If you are wondering why CTU is striking for go to:

If you are wondering what the Walking Man is listening to on his walk this labor day it's Bruce Springsteen singing Woody Guthrie's This Land is Your Land.