Thursday, December 20, 2018

Richer Than Soil and Dumber Than Dirt

That's how I'd describe US Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. Oddly, in her zeal to prevent gun atrocity, she doesn't even consider that guns are a factor. She doesn't consider that these episodes are endemic here, and barely occur in countries where guns are carefully regulated.

Now in her defense, she bought that position fair and square. She's paid off every tinhorn GOP hack this side of the Panama Canal. Also, she's never held a real job before, so how can she be expected to know how to do this one? A lot of people don't take that into account when writing about her. However, incompetence is not always the best defense for doing a terrible job. Let's take a look at Betsy's new initiative:

The Department of Education is poised to rescind Obama-era policies that sought to ensure minority students are not unfairly disciplined in schools, an effort the Trump administration believes will alleviate school-related violence.

Now, what exactly is the alternative to ensuring "minority students are not unfairly disciplined?" To my mind, that suggests we need to start disciplining minority students unfairly. That will get right to the heart of the issue of school shootings, won't it? But, wait a minute...aren't all or most of the school shooters white? Should we perhaps discipline them unfairly? Let's look a little closer at the Trumpies' explanation:

Senior White House administration officials said that the commission heard a "recurring narrative" that teachers and students were afraid because individuals who had a history of antisocial, or sometimes violent, behavior were left unpunished or unchecked. They said rescinding this policy would address that issue.

Okay. Let's say that's true. How will unfairly disciplining minority students address that? I don't know about you, but when I get treated unfairly, it kind of pisses me off. Now sure, I don't go around shooting people when I'm angry, but as far as I know, neither do minority students. Every one of those school shooters seems to be a white guy. Perhaps their theory is that by being unfair to minority students, the white guys won't be so mad anymore. Oddly, though, in Trump's America, I see a lot more empowered white guys feeling entitled to say or do anything.

In fact, this report inspired a rebuke from the reformiest of the reformies:

In a joint statement provided to CNN on Tuesday, former Education Secretaries John King Jr. and Arne Duncan said that by rescinding the Obama-era policies, the Trump administration was "(turning) its back on our most vulnerable students." 

These two guys know quite a bit about treating minorities unfairly. Reformy John taught three whole years, and famously disregarded entire crowds of people who spoke against his hurtful and idiotic policies. Doing that catapulted him to the reformiest position in the country, the one now held by Betsy DeVos. And Arne, who never taught at allmfamously praised the horrendous disaster. Sure people died, Sure people left their homes and never came back. Sure it cost taxpayers a hundred billion dollars. But Arne said it was the best thing to ever happen to New Orleans education, because the privatized the whole city, and Arne's rich pals got even richer.

Sure, Betsy DeVos is even worse than Arne or Reformy John, but they set the stage to allow her to take reforminess to a new level. If Arne and Reformy John were great for having little or no teaching experience, Betsy is better because she has no experience whatsoever.

You know what I would do if I were Education Secretary? I would lobby to make the assault weapons used in school shootings illegal. I would buy back AR-15s and their ilk from Americans and establish strict penalties for any non-military who owned them. On the other hand, I haven't taken millions from the NRA. Now don't get me wrong. I'd be happy to take millions from them. A world where I have more millions and they have fewer would look fine to me. I'd donate the millions to anti-NRA groups, and try to send NRA back to the primordial sludge where it belongs.

If we ever want to stop the gun violence, we're gonna have to stop the guns, and we're also gonna have to stop each and every NRA-owned politician. We're also gonna have to send Betsy back to Michigan. From there they can equip one of her homes with rocket fuel and send her to the moon.

Apologies in advance to the moon.
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