Thursday, September 1, 2011

Echo chambers, ostriches, and navel gazing

Preaching to the choir here, but if you're not outraged, you're not paying attention.

We are abandoning the cornerstones of democracy, couching it as temporary austerity, and no one seems to care or even notice. Communities are evolving without oversight. And all everyone seems to care about is the Hunger Games, when very real ones are being played out daily.

A local superintenedent with a mere year of educational experience crows about his cost reductions in using a temporary service for instructional support staff, so they didn't have to be provided benefits. Paying people starvation wages and then expecting them to nurture our most vulnerable children is unrealistic, especially when you don't even support them with basic needs like health care.

I didn't think it was possible for me to get more upset than I was when I wrote about similar issues for the Future of Libraries ebook project spearheaded by Kristin Fonticiaro and Buffy Hamilton, but I am very worried that as a society we have abandoned any pretext of equality. And without that undergirding, we might as well just fight hand-to-hand.

And, really, I feel like our students (and their families) need really fundamental survival training now.

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