Years ago, I placed the blame for uncertified, unqualified edutourists who spent a year or two working in mostly urban schools before heading off to law school or cushy gigs at ed policy think tanks on the despicable persons heading up Teach for America–the Michelle Rhees and Wendy Kopps of the world–and not the fresh-faced, hyper ambitious noobs who applied for and took those jobs, often at the expense of veteran teachers of color who got bumped out of their gigs by cheaper, short-term replacements.
But there came a time when it was impossible to give these supposedly brilliant young non-education majors a pass for not knowing about the true purpose behind TfA’s agenda–which had nothing to do with providing teachers for urban schools, and everything to do with destroying unions and destabilizing the very urban schools they professed to support. If you were “smart enough” to attend an “elite” university and get “chosen” for a TfA “fellowship,” then you were certainly wise enough to know exactly what you were getting yourself in to, or worse, just didn’t care. And neither is a good look, or gets you a pass for the damage that’s been done to our schools and our profession by TfA and other “backdoor” alternative routes to the classroom.
In a similar way, for the longest time I didn’t blame the “vaccine hesitant” for not getting their J&J, or Moderna, or Pfizer shots when they were eligible, chalking up their decision to the influence of conservative politicians like FL Governor Ron DeSantis and KY Senator Rand Paul, and media trolls like Sean Hannity, Tucker Carlson, and their ilk. These folks are very persuasive to a certain type of audience, and are very good at what they do.
But if you are one of the nearly 90 million Americans who has still refused to get the vaccine, you are no longer “hesitant”–now you’re just “obstinate.” And a public health risk. And a disease vector.
And by continuing to ignorantly refusing to do your small, free, individual part in combating the worst public health crisis of our lifetimes, you are also signaling that you believe that…
- the Biden administration is “plucking” Covid-infected children from the border, and seeding them in towns across the country
- the best way to stem the rising tide of Covid infections in your state is to resist shutdowns, mask mandates and other public health measures, and take away funding from public school districts that institute mask mandates or encourage their employees to get vaccinated
- vaccines are untested and dangerous, masks don’t work, and Covid is no worse than the flu
- a brutal, tyrannical dictator is a better leader than our own president
So while Carlson, and Hannity, and Paul, and DeSantis, and Gosar, and Greene, and Jordan, and Gaetz, and Boebert, and…well, too many to include here, to be frank…are horrible human beings who couldn’t care less about eliminating Covid, or improving our economy, or public policy, or, well, anything, really…the responsibility to trundle down to your corner pharmacy, or family physician, or ready-care clinic, or university horse stables (thank you MSU!), or drive through vaccination clinic (thank you Sparrow Hospital!) is all yours now, campers.
No more blaming an “ineffective vaccine”–all three vaccines are highly effective.
No more saying that you’re waiting for “FDA approval”–the Pfizer vaccine is slated for FDA approval early next month, with the others expected shortly after.
No more conspiracy theories about “microchips,” “5G,” etc.–it’s all easily disproven nonsense.
No more “deeply held religious beliefs” exemptions–most major religious leaders are encouraging everyone to get vaccinated. Including the Pope, who calls getting vaccinated a moral and ethical imperative.
In the last year alone I’ve had vaccinations for the flu, shingles, and Covid. At no time did I ever consider any of these shots to be “deeply personal, private decisions.”
They were simple precautions against infectious viruses. Among the easiest decisions I’ve ever made, to be honest. And we made sure our teenage children got their vaccinations as soon as they were able to do so. Again, amazingly easy decisions for our entire family.
So, “patriots,” unless you want more mask mandates, social distancing requirements, closed restaurants and bars, no sporting events, and another year or more of virtual emergency schooling, it’s time to be a grown up and go get your arm stuck. It’s easy, quick, and free. Even better, your taxes already paid for it!
Time to grow up, kids.
Teach for America and Covid.
2 dangerous, destructive viruses with easy, simple, free remedies: Strong public schools and vaccines.
Get yours today.