Gloria Steinem: Chicago teachers ‘taking it on the chin for 25 years’

By Stephen C. Webster
Tuesday, September 11, 2012 16:31 EDT
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Feminist activist Gloria Steinem. Photo: Screenshot via YouTube.
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Gloria Steinem, feminist author, activist and co-founder of the Women’s Media Center, said Monday during an interview with progressive talk show host Thom Hartmann that she’s rooting for Chicago’s teachers, who this week embarked on their first major strike in 25 years.

“I have no role in this strike,” she said. “…But it is so overwhelmingly clear that these teachers have been taking it on the chin for 25 years, working in schools without enough heat, with asbestos, without enough text books, with social workers — do you know there’s 1,000 students per social worker? It is outrageous what’s been going on, and it is now especially outrageous that the mayor has the chutzpah to say that this is selfish on the part of the teachers. It is simply outrageous.”

“It certainly is a war on unions,” Steinem went on. “This is a kind of Arab Spring moment, with some Rosa Parks moments as part of it. This union, which is 87 percent female and almost half African American and Latina, I really don’t think that even given the anti-union sentiment, that there would be this degree of hostility and contempt for a union of white guys with hardhats.”

She added that privatizing schools “is part of an effort to turn schools into profit centers that prisons have been turned into in many states.”

“For Mayor [Rahm] Emanuel to be so fervently and enthusiastically supported by Romney, it shows how far he has sunk from his supposed roots,” she said.

This video is from “The Big Picture,” broadcast by Russia Today on Monday, Sept. 10, 2012.


Photo: Screenshot via YouTube.

Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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