(Mensaje se repite en Español)
(For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post)
When we think of those who collaborated with Nationalsozialismus or Nazism and the Third Reich during World War II, we usually have quite appropriate visions of Vichy France. But early on, the Nazis had sympathizers in many other countries organizations including in America and some moved on to becoming allies and collaborators. It may be surprising to realize but some of these were even Jews themselves who went so far as to help in the selection of other Jews who would go to the camps. Most noteworthy and vile among the many features of Nazism was racism, assassination and genocide. But the Nazis also opposed liberalism, democracy, capitalism, industrialization and, of greatest interest to us, trade unionism. The most powerful unit within Nazi corps was the Schutzstaffel or the SS which faithfully enforced the policies listed above. They did the dirty work. So the issue to be addressed here is the similar nature of certain organizations and their working committees who are taking over the field of education within our own Los Angeles community.
For any of you who have done any time with the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) the comparisons to Nazi Germany are more than apparent. The totalitarianism and suppression of freedom of expression are commonplace and daily ordeals. Teacher intimidation and roundups grow in frequency. The loses of protections under tenure, permanency, and seniority are recent. The end of careers or the threat of it is a constant presence. And what makes these conditions so much worse is the ever reliable collaborative relationship the district holds with its partner, the United Teachers of Los Angeles (UTLA).