Union ‘parasites’ — You mean our teachers, public safety workers?
I wasn’t going to bother to write until I saw the photo in Saturday’s Citizen. The signs said “Time to Stop these Union Parasites” and “Unions Greedy Socialists.”
Terry Garlock wrote about unions in his column. He wrote: “The state collects union dues as a deduction from member paychecks, passing the money on to the unions, who use that money to contribute heavily to Democrat election campaigns”.
Now this is an assertion by Mr. Garlock and undoubtedly the wellspring for the remainder of his drivel. I need a drum-roll here: Terry since you made the accusation, how much of their teachers’ dues are used to support Democrats?
And don’t include those donations made freely to Political Action Committees. I realize it’s fun to be Glen Beck and Rush Limbaugh; just make the wild accusation and move on, but I’m calling you out. Surely you’ve done your homework before putting it in the newspaper.
And of course Terry hates collective bargaining. While this practice is suddenly the spawn of the devil, it only means people are able to unite their voice, elect leaders who bargain in good faith with their employers.
No one objects when the holders of big capital do this. As a matter of fact it is a Republican mantra that governance at the source is always better; that decisions are far more relevant when they take place close to the people who are affected.
Terry suggests that a bureaucratic board assembled somewhere in the dark reaches of a state capital can understand and dictate far better, the pay and benefits of state workers. So this month we are affording you all free health insurance, as long as you take yourself to Dr. Evil’s clinic here in Madison. Undoubtedly no shenanigans can occur with this system.
Ironically the unions in Wisconsin had already agreed to work with the governor who seems to think himself another Ron Reagan, ready to crush unions with a single blow.
Which brings me to the picture. The parasites and socialists who teach our kids every day. The ones who protect our homes and lives. The ones who make sure the water flows and the detritus continues to move downstream. You know ... those socialist parasites.
I guess the tea party jerks in that picture would consider my mother and father union socialist parasites. My mother came from poverty in Bridgeport, Conn., a child of the Depression who was so smart she made a perfect score on her nursing boards.
My father quit school at 17 to join the Navy; was on Omaha Beach on June 6, 1944; picked up the shattered bodies of the 800 men killed on the Leopoldville Christmas 1944; returned to marry a beautiful nurse and raise nine children.
He installed and fixed phones and phone lines. He commanded the local VFW and American Legion. He worked 100 hours per week, climbing polls in 20 degree below zero weather.
He became a union rep to help bargain for wages and working conditions for the men just like him. He did this on top of working 100 hours a week.
He did this so my mother could stay home and raise their nine children after which she went back to nursing. Their nine children went on to collect doctorates and master’s degrees, to work in things as diverse as animal medicine to real estate to teaching. None ever collected unemployment or took a dime from the government nor did their parents.
I remember flying in the Balkans during the early troubled times, looking down at their shattered society and wondering how such hatred could be manifest everywhere I looked. I am beginning to understand. Proud Union Man,
Timothy J. Parker
Peachtree City, Ga.