Posted by Curt on 27 June, 2016 at 8:00 pm. 2 comments already!


Mollie Hemingway:

A man who earlier this month called for GOP lawmakers to be sewn into bags with rabid animals and thrown into a river to die wrote a column expressing concern about the “insulting language” being used in the debate over Detroit’s failed government schools.

Stephen Henderson, the Pulitzer prize-winning editorial page editor of theDetroit Free Press, repeatedly called for the violent deaths of Republican lawmakers after they voted to give $617 million in aid to academically and financially failing Detroit Public Schools. That wasn’t the problem so much as the portion of the legislation removing some constraints on charter schools in the city.

“It is every bit deserving of an old-school retributive response. A sack. An animal. A lake,” he wrote. He also said the lawmakers “deserve worse than hanging” for their legislative attempts to reform the failing system. He also said, “We really ought to round up the lawmakers who took money to protect and perpetuate the failing charter-school experiment in Detroit, sew them into burlap sacks with rabid animals, and toss them into the Straits of Mackinac.”

When the targets of his violent rhetoric complained, he was defiant that he would not apologize, for which other liberal journalists cheered. He said his repeated calls for his opponents to face a violent death were mere “historical hyperbole.”

So it’s odd, or funny, that someone with such a permissive view of violent rhetoric would write a column despairing over Republicans’ use of the term “bailout” to describe a massive $617 million, er, bailout of Detroit public schools.

But what I can’t figure out, for the life of me, is why Republicans in the Michigan Legislature and the highly financed charter school lobby feel compelled to use the most insulting language to describe the recasting of public education here in Detroit. It has become so common that even press reports now refer to the legislation as a bailout.

Henderson, who keeps his own children out of the failing public schools, chalks up the use of this term to “privilege and manipulation.”

His case, such as it is, is that it’s unfair to suggest money is being “given” by state taxpayers to keep Detroit public schools from collapsing because the state had some oversight and control in the last 17 years of this decades-long morality tale of how adults betray children.

Fine, but bailout is a word meaning “the act of giving financial assistance to a failing business or economy to save it from collapse.” Obviously taxpayers are giving to the public schools to keep them from collapse. It they weren’t giving the money, or if it were a foregone conclusion that they would, it wouldn’t have been the subject of a fierce legislative battle.

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