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Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Imagine all the people defending public education this July 8 in DC?

W.E.B. DuBois our nation's great voice of justice and civil rights for people of color said: “Of all the civil rights for which the world has struggled and fought for 5,000 years, the right to learn is undoubtedly the most fundamental . . .The freedom to learn . . . has been bought by bitter sacrifice. And whatever we may think of the curtailment of other civil rights, we should fight to the last ditch to keep open the right to learn . . . (The Freedom to Learn, 1949).

Sometimes I find myself, standing in those defending the right to learn ditches wondering where is everyone else.
I find myself saying, children are more than test scores. Why is the whole nation not shouting it out?
I find myself saying, 49 out of 50 American states spend more money on their wealthy schools than their poor schools. I wonder, how my people have not voted out of office every one of those 49 governors and their legislative bodies?
I find myself thinking, how is the funding for testing endless. While funding for services for Black, Brown, poor and special needs children is always the first to be cut when states cry poverty.

I find myself wondering, how can Ed Reformers force poor schools to compete against each other without equitable resources? While at the same time states give billions to Charter Schools and Magnet Schools to compete against Black, Brown, and Poor public schools? Choice without equity has always been the wrong choice.
I find myself wondering, how our schools are re-segregating faster 62 years after Brown v The Broad of Education? Why everyone is not in the streets demanding we will not go back?
I find myself wondering why are so many of my brothers and sisters not defending these last ditches of the right to learn?

What I never wonder is where I will be standing. I'll be standing in that last ditch defending equity and justice in our public schools. You’ll find me with my sign It’s Time to End this School to Prison Pipeline. You'll find singing "ain't nobody gonna turn me around".
We the last ditch defenders are gathering to defend the right to learn in Washington DC  at the Lincoln Memorial July 8.

President John Adams wrote about public education to John Jebb in 1785: “The whole people must take upon themselves the education of the whole people and be willing to bear the expenses of it. There should not be a district of one mile square, without a school in it, not founded by a charitable individual, but maintained at the public expense of the people themselves.” 

I have no doubt that if Dubois and Adams were here today they say it's time to march Walking Man. 
There is a verse Isaiah 1:17 that guides me each day. 
“Learn to do good. 
Seek justice. 
Help the oppressed. 
Defend the cause of orphans. 
Fight for the rights of widows.”

Sometimes I find myself imagining, what if everyone learned to good, seek justice, help the oppressed, defended the cause of orphans, and fought for the rights of widows? Come that day the Prison to School Pipeline falls, the era of Test and Punish ends, equity and justice become the only standard for public education in America. On that day 
Come join us ditch defenders of the right to learn in DC this July 8,
Jesse The Walking Man Turner

If you like to hear the song that this Walking Man listened to on his walk's John Lennon's Imagine > <

1 comment:

  1. Be there right in DC with you. You going to have plenty of CTU RANK and FILE coming.