The following letter was written in response to a Chicago Tribune editorial dated 13 September 2012.
14 September 2012
I would like to congratulate the Chicago Tribune editorial board for the time-tested ideological consistency it displayed in its Thursday editorial, which chided the Chicago Teachers Union for its opposition to city government’s efforts to implement education ‘reform.’ With sneering, triumphal, and factually challenged prose, the Tribune displayed the same pathological contempt for organized labor that it so proudly articulated over 75 years ago with its glowing support for the perpetrators of the 1937 Memorial Day Massacre at the Republic Steel plant.
I understand that the Tribune Opinion section is not an appropriate venue for discussing empirical data, so I will instead issue a challenge to the editorial board: I will engage you in a public debate at the time and place of your choosing. I promise to present data supporting my contention that what the Tribune characterizes as ‘inevitable reform’ is little more than an organized campaign of Three-card Monte designed to redirect tax revenue into the hands of greedy investors while decimating one of the last vestiges of organized labor and guaranteeing (through academic impoverishment) the future pauperization of ever-growing numbers of working class and formerly middle-class children.
In the interest of full disclosure, I confess that I am both a product of Chicago Public Schools and the parent of a CPS student. I suggest that the Tribune send as its representative a member of the editorial board who currently has a child enrolled in the Chicago Public Schools (including CPS-contracted charters). This will both negate my inherent bias and demonstrate that the editorial board’s advocacy for Rahm Emanuel’s “vital reforms” is sincerely motivated by a desire to improve our children’s education.
I look forward to your response.