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On Leaked E-Mails and The Eventual Uproar [Where I Call Joel Klein a Pirate]

Jose Vilson Jose 2 Comments

First, let me tell you how excited I was that the United Federation of Teachers FOILed Joel Klein’s e-mails from DOE. I’m much happier knowing that I wasn’t misjudging anything about him or his co-conspirators on any level. They really do come off like jerks, they really do spend ALL day on their Blackberries for no apparent reason, and they really do want to push the idea of charter schools to the detriment of actual public schools. I don’t mind a few charters here and there, but the corporatists crossed the line by making it the solution to the education’s ills (when they know it’s not).

Plus, if I can’t get the Pearson-created math statewide tests released, I should at least get a few uncomfortable giggles from Klein’s exchanges.

Having said that, I’m also surprised that some of my colleagues are shocked (SHOCKED) by the content of the e-mails. We knew that even the most professional of us exchange a few “motherfuckers” and “shits” when in the midst of trusted company, especially about Klein, Cathie Black, and Bloomberg. Too many of you (yes, you) want to get angry because they clearly don’t like people who tell them something different from what they want to hear? Madness. I almost want to blurt out “There are starving people in _____ and you STILL think this is worth raging over?”

Also, have you taken a look at Joel Klein? Does it LOOK like he cares whether or not he cares what you think? He probably swears like a pirate; he already looks like one, and works for one. I’m not sure I knew anyone who called him “nice,” “pleasant,” or “gracious.” You might hear the word professional thrown about his aura, but a suit and a tie do a lot for a man. I mean, assassins and consiglieres are professionals, too, right? Right?

My only disappointment is that he didn’t do any drunk texting or get HotOrNot requests at random. Otherwise, any of the name-calling or charter school promotion didn’t bother me at all. If, in the words of Klein, this is all becoming very fluid, then our task is to bring things to a boil. He was supposed to work for all children in NYC, not just the ones he preferred.

Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words … I got a few choice words for this, too.

About Jose Vilson

José Luis Vilson is a math educator, blogger, speaker, and activist. For more of my writing, buy my book This Is Not A Test: A New Narrative on Race, Class, and Education, on sale now.

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