Return Of The Union Darth!
That fancy @#$ Union Darth is looking like he feels he’s King of the World. I imagine he will, when he comes to our campus today. That’s if he does come, he cancelled once already. I’m erring on the side that he will make as many appearances as possible, trying to keep the pro-strike rhetoric at the maximum. That rhetoric has been working until now, and there’s no reason to dial it back.
The last time that I spoke with Darth Fancious was before the last school year ended. I hadn’t turned in my UTLA “All In” reconfirmation of membership, since I had actually read the fine print. I told him that I was going to keep my options open, with the Supreme Court case pending that would possibly make my membership optional. I invited him to convince me what the union had to offer, and he chose instead to be generally denigrating, and to shout me down.
In a rare moment of restraint, I actually didn’t take that bait.
Since that time, the Supreme Court decision came down, and it did in fact give me the option to go non-union. I haven’t yet, because in a very important fashion, I haven’t had a reason to. Darth Fancious may be an Epic Level Douchebag, but the unfortunate commentary of a single individual isn’t going to make a decision for me, one way or the other. The organization would have to make a decision that would force me to part ways with them, ethically.
Soon after that decision, contract negotiations came to a point where a strike authorization vote was held. That vote had eighty percent of the membership voting in it, and of those ninety eight percent were pro-strike. I’m not pro-strike, and I’ve covered that ground already, in other posts.
Some coverage of the negotiations has suggested that the Union isn’t negotiating in good faith any longer, that they instead want to get to a legal strike as soon as possible. That’s certainly in line with the rhetoric that the Union President has said directly to me, although he didn’t say so explicitly. I couldn’t say one way or another, honestly. It has seemed like decent contract offers have been turned away, but I’m not in the room with them.
I’m not sure if I’m going to go to this meeting. I feel like I should, but I don’t know if I have the restraint to deal with that clown. I also don’t feel that any real information would really come forth, just semi motivational rhetoric, and a lot of talk about “Union Brothers and Sisters” which I always find hard to take. I almost feel like I should take Cap’s view on this, and just do a cool standoff.
The thing is…if I go, this guy is going to lie, or present some kind of oversimplification. He did the last time we talked, about legal cases with the District and the Union that I was part of. He just kind of assumes that he knows better than the people he’s talking to. I can’t let a lie stand in a public forum….not about things that affect student education, and my friends’ livelihood and income. It’s that kind of thing that forces me to raise my hand, and “call out” the problem.
I haven’t done that with any of these UTLA types since leaving my old school. In fact, since they copped out of helping me take down go after a principal who was problematic, and creating a very hostile, poorly run work environment. You know…the kind of thing that they EXIST to do in the first place. I couldn’t part company with the union then, but if it were possible, I would have.
That wound has healed, and since then, I’ve had the view that UTLA can do it’s own fun stuff for them and their members “over there,” and I would quietly keep to my own space and do my thing. You know, teaching and so forth. I don’t really feel the need to engage with them, or that it has ever done me any good.
It’s possible that a couple of teachers may drag me along, to get my opinion. In that case, I’ll try to just listen and keep my cool.
Once again…fingers crossed.