The clock is ticking, and parents are about to stage an outright political revolt at the ballot box on every elected official who continues to stand in the way of their ability to earn a living and ensure that their children can get the quality education they deserve in the United States of America.
The reality of the current COVID-19 situation is that for months, Republicans and former President Donald Trump sounded the alarm about the dangers of keeping our schools closed during this global pandemic.
I do not use the word “dangers” lightly—this prolonged lockdown is very dangerous. Several months ago, I wrote about how suicides were increasing in major cities, and now we are seeing adults and children take their lives because of depression, anxiety, and fear. This is a direct result of public schools not re-opening.
Not everyone can afford a nanny, many childcare providers are still closed, and many people do not have family that can watch their children while they work. Single parents are being hurt especially hard right now. If you are fortunate enough to have a job that allows you to work from home, that is not the standard for most Americans. With schools being closed for in-person teaching, parents can’t leave the house to work.
If parents can’t work, they can’t earn a living, and if they can’t earn a living, they can’t pay their bills and buy food. If they can’t pay their bills or buy food, children suffer. There have been countless examples of how virtual school is causing major problems for our children. We know students at all levels are failing courses, falling behind, not experiencing important human and social interaction, and are in front of a screen which can have a negative impact on their vision.
There is a reckoning coming for the Democrats who hold all the power, all the control, yet are still refusing to listen to the science and open the schools. We are starting to see it in places like California where the sitting Governor is facing a recall and Chicago where Democrat Mayor Lori Lightfoot is finally calling out the teacher’s unions—after months of bowing to their interests—because they are standing in the way for progress.
The Democrat Chicago mayor said “We are failing those children by not giving them the option to return to school. Failing grades. Depression. Isolation. And so much more. That’s why we must get a deal done and get it done now without further delay.”
The tensions are brewing in another Democrat-run city where the teacher’s unions are standing in the way of parents having choice in their children’s education. The San Francisco City Attorney, Dennis Herrera, is being supported by his liberal mayor, London Breed, in this unprecedented lawsuit against their own local school district. Herrera said it was shameful and unlawful that, “Not a single San Francisco public school student has set foot in their classroom in 327 days… more than 54,000 San Francisco schoolchildren are suffering. They are being turned into Zoom-bies by online school. Enough is enough.”
Even the new head of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention Dr. Rochelle Walensky looked at the data and the science and said, “there is increasing data to suggest that schools can safely reopen, and that safe reopening does not suggest that teachers need to be vaccinated... Vaccinations of teachers is not a prerequisite for safely reopening schools.”
But the Biden White house still stands with the teacher’s unions. The White House press secretary said Walensky was not speaking for the CDC, but in her personal capacity, despite sitting in front of a CDC backdrop at her job.
Knowing all this, seeing all this, feeling all this, the Biden White House refuses to break with the powerful teacher’s union. In fact, Biden has set the bar so low on his so-called plan to reopen 50 percent of the schools for one day a week in 100 days, that even the media has panned it as a “retreat,” “pathetic,” “backtrack,” and “slippery.”
Remember when Biden told teacher’s unions there would be a card-carrying member of the union in the White House if he got elected? Remember when he said he would eliminate charter schools on the campaign trail? I believed him then, and his actions are clearly showing where his priorities are now—and they’re not with American families.
Small business owners and families need a lifeline, not more red tape. The best lifeline is not a temporary government check of $1,400 (down from the $2,000 Biden promised on the campaign trail) but it is the dignity of having a job with a steady paycheck. But if you are a parent with a non-work from home job or an entrepreneur, schools remaining closed just hurts your ability to survive, let alone thrive.
If parents are expected to work, children have to be cared for in childcare or school. Knowing all this, understanding how this impacts Americans, especially Black Americans and those in more economically fragile communities, the majority of Democrats in power are still not fighting to end the lockdowns, open the economies and allow students to come back to school.
Republicans believe that big government and unions should get out of the way and stop being intrusive in every aspect of our lives, especially when it involves our children and their education. We are the party of school choice, opportunities and freedom. That has not changed, and we will remain on the front lines of this battle because it is the right thing to do for all Americans.