A Teacher Who Often Criticizes His Union Says It Is Time to Stand Strong Together

Arthur Goldstein, a high school teacher in Queens, New York, has often criticized the UFT for not taking the militant stands that Arthur prefers. But now, he says, it is time to stand together and fight. Unions are facing an existential threat to their existence. The Rightwing billionaire Robert Mercer is behind an effort to call a state constitutional convention. Arthur knows what Mercer has in mind: stealing the hard-earned pensions of working people.

Goldstein writes:

“This is problematic for those of us who envision a retirement in which we don’t have to check prices of canned cat food before purchasing it for lunch…

“This is a very real threat, and not just for senior teachers. Our pensions are already under attack by national reformies, and folks like Mercer would probably like nothing better than to do away with them utterly. Right now, the only solid entity I know that’s fighting this is our union and AFL-CIO. That’s why I went before my staff and made my own pitch for COPE this year, and that’s why I signed up another 80-plus members.

“I would not be able to sleep at night if I weren’t doing my bit to fight Mercer and like-minded reformies. While some of my friends disagree, I will continue to push COPE for now. Hey, if we win in November, maybe we can reconsider. But a country controlled by Donald Trump and his thugs is a very dangerous place for working people. While I frequently disagree with union leadership, this is one area in which I don’t want their hands tied.

“To them, I say fight this vigorously. Too frequently I see UFT leadership fall down when no one pushes them. They can’t afford to do that now. We need to not only support them in this, but also to monitor their actions and progress.”

from sarah http://ift.tt/2ueQno0

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