Despite an ominous warning from their union, public school teachers across New York City wore T-shirts signaling their support for the NYPD this week. The movement to wear the shirts arose largely as a response to United Federation of Teachers chief Michael Mulgrew's participation in a Staten Island protest against police brutality. (The rally and march, organized by Rev. Al Sharpton, was held on Staten Island last month to protest the death of Eric Garner during an arrest in July.)
Some union members were angered by Mulgrew's decision to throw official UFT support behind the march, and in some photos he can be seen marching at the front of the crowd near Sharpton. After teachers started a Facebook group urging their colleagues to wear NYPD shirts on the first day of school, the union sent out an email Wednesday night informing teachers that, “as public employees, one must remain objective at all times. Certain T-shirt messages may appear to be supportive, but individuals (parents, students) may see a different meaning in that message... Principals may report any inappropriate apparel to the chancellor."
Mulgrew later said "everyone has a right to voice their own opinion," but a DOE spokesperson said, "Anything that distracts or disrupts learning should be left out of school buildings."
One Brooklyn public school librarian who wore an NYPD shirt told PIX 11, "What happened [to Garner] was a terrible tragedy, and it’s not our place to be deciding who’s guilty and who’s not guilty. I don’t see it as a political message. I just see it as we want our children to respect policemen, to respect firemen, to respect teachers, to respect everybody."
Respect! You may have noticed that word on the side of NYPD squad cars; it's also part of their job description LOL. It's great teachers want to teach kids respect, because they're certainly not going to learn about that from the NYPD:
But what do we know? We've taken a very controversial stance against police brutality, which can only mean we're anti-NYPD, just like how protesting stupid wars means you must hate the troops. As one contributor to the cop message board NYPD Rant so eloquently puts it, "These teacher unions have been run by radical cop-haters for generations. Why are these mutts running those unions? Because they keep getting voted in by the vast majority of the teachers. Teachers indoctrinating each generation instead of teaching them."
Can't these "mutts" drill all the nuanced, informed opinions out of our kids and instill some blind obedience to authority in them?