Keep your brown bag full of tools away from our schools

31 May 2011/1 June 2011

Dear Scott Walker,

Sorry I haven't written to you in few days. It took me some time to calm down enough to send you a letter that didn't have so much swearing. And I warn you that I'm not going to make any promises in that department, on account of you being such an insufferable ass and everything. But I'll do my best.

Why, you ask, am I too angry to write to you?  After all, I've been mad this whole time, and that hasn't stopped me, even if I have, on occasion, made reference to your assholery or the fact that you are a duplicitous jackass.  But why am I so mad that I can't write without degenerating into a rage-fueled barrage of foul language?  It's so unlike me not to be able to rant away! What's so special about this week?

Well, it's partly because the poll tax bill went through this week, effectively legalizing the disenfranchisement of tens of thousands of Wisconsin voters and - adding insult to a deep, deep injury - stealing money from our state's exemplary Election Campaign Fund in order fund this $7.5 million piece of totally unwarranted legislation.

And it's partly because Kloppenburg conceded the Supreme Court race after an unsuccessful recount, despite the fact that there were enough irregularities to warrant a federal investigation of election fraud, forcing me to wonder once again how I came to live in a state in which so many people would willingly vote for a man who openly called a colleague a bitch in a fit of workplace rage, then justified it by claiming she goaded him into, like "they" do.

And it's partly because of the absurd slap in the face which is the authorizing of unprecedented budget cuts to public education, and then trying to pacify the masses by calling a paltry $116 million adjustment to your proposed cuts a "roll back" (hey! worked for Wal-Mart! These idiots will buy anything!) as if we won't notice the $800 MILLION CUTS to public ed, or that they just moved " $160 million from the state's main account into roads and bridges - money that otherwise could have gone toward schools or other priorities." Seeing your proposals go through the Republican legislation essentially unchallenged isn't just infuriating; it's scary. It shows that our elected officials very clearly are not listening to public or expert testimony and that they are driven solely by party politics, a case which could not be more clear in any instance than the negligent partisanship of Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen, who is as disinterested in the rule of law as he is in justice.

And it's partly because I'm terrified of the obscene conceal-carry law, and how no one seems to care about your plan to steal the pensions of public workers, and how now it's legal for municipalities in Wisconsin not to test their water.

But mainly it's because you've really amped up your efforts to disparage, disrepect, defund and destroy public schools in recent weeks. Powered, one imagines, by the residual ego-inflation of your moment of hobnobbery with the rich and dangerous in Washington, you returned to Wisconsin ready to launch a whirlwind tour of school visits and school hating, and you're doing so with an arrogance and level of contempt that is shocking even for you.

How dare you? How dare you force your way into the schools you're trying to destroy and make those poor teachers suffer through a "brown bag" (tm) lunch with you? How dare you "read" to the children whose futures you are doing everything in your seemingly unlimited power to restrict? (I put "read" in quotes because I still have no firm proof that this is a skill you actually possess). How dare you speak to the press - FROM  A PUBLIC SCHOOL! - and say that it doesn't matter to you in the least that a judge has declared your union-busting legislation illegal; you'll push it through some other way, no matter what it takes. Paul Fanlund got it exactly right:
"GOP operatives have been able to create and foster resentment toward teachers by other members of the middle class. Of all Republican hypocrisies, top prize must go to the complaint that it is Democrats who promote "class warfare" by proposing tax increases on the wealthy. All the while, the GOP relentlessly tries to split the middle class, pitting those who work for private employers against public employees. "
You think that you can keep visiting public schools, day after day, and continue to ignore the protesters, and their protests. And it seems to be working. You've broken me down to the point where it seems so utterly pointless to write to you that I can barely control my rage.

But guess, what, Scott Walker? A cute little baby who hates you as much as I do has inspired me to remember that solidarity doesn't end at the rally. And I'm not alone in not giving up. You can visit as many schools as you want, but that's not going to fool me for a minute into thinking you support education. This abuse of power will not stand. And we will not stand down.

12:11 am. So it's officially June now. Which means you have about seven more months to go around making a fool of yourself at schools and subjecting teachers to the humiliation of having to share physical space with you as you mock them. Meanwhile, we'll keep keeping you honest, by which I mean making public your lies and abuses of power. And we'll keep reminding you of this cute little baby, who hates you so much, since we know how you like to keep our "specific comments in mind":

Stop wasting taxpayer dollars to jet around the state visiting schools that don't want you anywhere near them. I hope you have the nerve to visit my son's school, so that I can launch a major letter-writing campaign and make sure my son does not attend school that day.  And so you could see how beautiful it is when all the teachers wear red in solidarity against your attacks on them, and our children. And also so we can make sure the media gets some good footage of the staff parking lot, where car after car sends the same message: RECALL WALKER.

Or you could just resign.

With all due respect (which, in your case, is none),

Heather DuBois Bourenane
Wisconsin taxpayer, parent, advocate of justice, and person capable of hardly swearing at all while addressing you

P.S. Remember your hokey "brown bag" campaign? It's been ironically repurposed. Enjoy:

This is what a school parking lot looks like.

1 comment:

  1. I commend you for your restraint in not using the F word when it comes to Scott Walker. I can't even say or think his name without the verb form of the F word preceding his name. You have our support in Texas where our asshole governor, Rick Perry, has already destroyed the state to the tune of 28 billion in the red and just told the schools that used to receive money it isn't coming and they have to figure out how to pay for stuff -- and turned around and then said that he, Rick 'closeted gay man' Perry, did not lay off any teachers, their school districts did. What fucking assholes Rick Perry and Scott Walker are.