Monday, September 05, 2016

This Labor Day--Stand Up for Locked Out LIU Teachers

On Twitter I got into an interesting conversation. I posted about the LIU teachers who were locked out. I asked why anyone would want to pay 40K plus to be taught by scab labor. The commenter said I was being too hard on the adjunct teachers. When I pointed out that the adjuncts were also union, he asked me what about people who are pursuing their hopes and dreams?

I was pretty unequivocal that strike breaking is strike breaking. To me, taking a union job from someone just because opportunity knocks is despicable. In fact, if the aforementioned dreamers were to take these jobs, they would contribute to breaking the union. As if that weren't enough, they would also be supporting LIU administration's goal of paying as little as possible for teachers. They would be screwing not only the union, but also themselves and those who followed. They would, in fact, be degrading the job market for their students.

The tweeter then told me that unions could be unfair and selective. I said that my union wasn't, that there was no evidence this union was, and that closed shops have been illegal since 1947. The person was very keen on reminding me that 1947 was important. While I'm sure that was true, it isn't 1947 now, and that was off topic. I'd argue that people taking jobs under those circumstances were subverting their hopes and dreams for two reasons--scab gigs are not typically long lasting, and the whole more work for less pay thing is not likely to help anyone in the long run.

Now, today, I support the LIU union, and if you'd like to support them too, you can do so right here. It's unconscionable that administration has shut them out. The union explains their position right here.  It's on us to either support them or contribute to the degradation of higher education. Now we've watched this in our own backyards for years.

I urge you to sign the petition, and send a message that even the grand exalted rulers of Long Island University need to bargain in good faith. There's no excuse for locking them out when they're perfectly willing to negotiate. If I paid full tuition at a private university like this, I'd be demanding my money back.
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