Teachers in Kentucky are not very happy right now. On Friday, thousands of them gathered at the state’s capitol in order to rally for more funding for education and protest a pension reform bill meant to save Kentucky residents some tax money. The bill cut 33% from the annual cost of living increases in pensions of retired teachers, at a time when the the state’s pension fund already only has about a 1/3 of the money it needs to pay out pensions to state employees. Teachers don’t get social security, so this is all they have to live on when they retire.
Also not happy? Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin, who isn’t really sure why education and people’s pensions need to be funded in the first place. Clearly, if the teachers were really good people who cared about children, they would work out in the wilderness with no books! And definitely no pension, because they would work until they were dead. For free.
Not only are these teachers bad, selfish people for wanting their retirement money and funding for education in general (which is in short supply in Kentucky), Bevin also claimed that, because at least 39 school districts closed while teachers attended the rally, all kinds of horrible things probably happened to children who were out for the day and probably left alone for the day.
“I guarantee you somewhere in Kentucky today, a child was sexually assaulted that was left at home because there was nobody there to watch them,” Bevin said. “I guarantee you somewhere today, a child was physically harmed or ingested poison because they were left alone because a single parent didn’t have any money to take care of them.”[…]
Bevin said “hundreds of thousands of children” were left alone across Kentucky as a result.
“Children were harmed – some physically, some sexually, some were introduced to drugs for the first time – because they were vulnerable and left alone,” Bevin continued.
Which is to say, teachers should not ask him for stuff for the children if they care about the welfare of the children.
Bevin also says that he noticed kids out in the city “hanging out, shoes off, hanging out, smoking, hanging out, leaving trash around (and) taking the day off.”
Well, it sounds like he’s got trouble! With a capital T and that rhymes with P and that stands for PENSIONS. Imagine! Teenagers! Hanging out! Outside, like hoboes and other people that go… outside. And hang out there. Outside. Shoeless.
Reactions to Bevin’s statements were largely incredulous, especially given the fact that children generally do sometimes have days off from school.
Jefferson County Teachers Association President Brent McKim said that using Bevin’s logic, schools should never close.
“The fact is, every school district did its level best to let parents know school was going to be closed with as much notice as possible,” McKim said. “The bottom line is that’s one day. He was cutting hundreds of millions of dollars from kids that would impact every day and that’s what we were in Frankfort to stop. We were there with the overwhelming support and encouragement of our parents who know that we care about every student in our classes.”
Wow! It’s almost as if Bevin is desperately trying to take the fact that it sure seems like he doesn’t care about the children, what with cutting funding for their education and all, and trying to turn it into a situation where the teachers — who are out there fighting for those children — are the ones that don’t care. In the tackiest possible way. By accusing them of being responsible for children being raped.
Perhaps if he cares so much for the children and is so very worried about them accidentally poisoning themselves while not in school, he should consider maybe funding their education and and their teacher’s pensions so that the teachers don’t have to go all the way down to Frankfort to protest that!