WASHINGTON, D.C. – Lily Eskelsen Garcia, president of the nation’s largest teachers union, said that President Trump is bringing young children to tears.
The head of the National Education Association used her pulpit at the National Press Club last Friday to rail on the president, who she said leaves Muslim, Mexican, and transgender students scared for their lives, according to The Salt Lake Tribune.
“We are facing a reckless, irresponsible administration that creates chaos and confusion – which is bad,” Garcia said. “But (Trump) does something worse: He creates fear in children. And that is unforgivable. For the first time in our country’s history – and I’ve talked to these teachers – we have had to comfort crying children because they are afraid of their president.”
Garcia’s attack came as NEA’s California Teachers Association affiliate distributes a new “Social Justice Toolkit” that features a whole host of propaganda aimed at fighting back against perceived threats from conservatives, a campaign that’s produced in both English and Spanish.
NEA created posters plastered in numerous California schools this year declare “Black Lives Matter,” “no human is illegal,” “all dreamers are welcome here,” “free public education is a civil right,” and “the union makes us strong,” among other leftist slogans.
Still more posters create “safe zones” to protect students from all of the bullies, and Garcia clearly believes Trump tops the list.
She pointed to Trump’s decision to end an illegal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program created by former President Obama through executive action to shield illegal immigrants from deportation.
“He cruelly said, ‘Don’t worry, be happy. Congress can fix it, no big deal.’ Donald Trump is playing games with the lives of 800,000 young people and he himself risks nothing,” Garcia said.
Trump tweeted last week that DACA recipients “have nothing to worry about,” while the president’s press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, said Trump’s focus was to pressure Congress into passing legislation to create “a safer, fairer and legal immigration system,” according to the Tribune.
Garcia, meanwhile, insists that illegal immigrant students “have everything to fear” – victims of the “irresponsible administration.”
NPR published an audio recording of her comments at the National Press Club.
“I am always afraid that someone who is afraid will hide and it would be foolish of me to tell those students that they have nothing to fear,” she said. “They have everything to fear, and this is the time that we have to be fearless.”
And by fearless, she means engaged in the union’s epic struggle to maintain control over the public school monopoly and resistant to the school choice bullies in Washington who want to give parents better alternatives. Of course, the quest for control, or social justice, also happens to align well with the union’s interest in raking in millions from dues-paying public school teachers, tax free.
Garcia framed Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’ support for school choice vouchers that would allow parents to avoid chronically failing public schools as an “unacceptable” threat that must be stopped.
“NEA and those three million members will do something about it,” she said. “We’ll fight this agenda to take resources away from our students, to frighten our students – (it) will not ever be acceptable to us and that’s probably obvious.”
Those who disagree with the NEA’s anti-choice agenda can “meet me behind the school,” Garcia said.
“We do what we do because we love our students and we honor our profession. And so, I would challenge anyone personally to meet me behind the school and talk to me about what I fought for all my life, what I fought for – my babies – because they can’t touch that,” she said.
Despite numerous assurances from Immigration and Customs Enforcement that agents do not target children at schools, Garcia told reporters “they will have to come through us first to get to those (DACA) students.”
Trump’s decision to phase out the program over several years has no impact on students currently protected by their DACA status.