Comments, Philip nobileI pray your series will report on dissidents within the UFT who lean toward abominating Mulgrew and his Unity crew as much as the Mayor's DOE. If Mulgrew had not shamefully betrayed Thompson by speaking against a DA resolution endorsing our Dewey Award winner v. Bloomberg, teacher troubles might be far less today. Free speech is almost impossible in official UFT venues because its anti-Jeffersonian leadership censors its newspaper,website, the Executive Committee's misnamed "open mike," and the show DAs. Dissent is outlaw. Just last week one of Mulgrew's boys. Brooklyn District Rep. Tom Bennett, went nuts at a School for Legal Studies chapter meeting and verbally abused an anti-Unity ATR, calling me a "f-----g pile of manure" and saying, "I'm gonna get Mulgrew to come down here andhe'll beat the s--t out of you."Will Mulgrew discipline this vulgarian? I asked. Still waiting for an answer.
Sunday, August 4, 2013
Act I of the Worst UFT Rep saga
October 26, 2012
I have criticized the UFT for its anti-democratic tendencies and contempt for free speech. Shameful examples: the censorship of NEW YORK TEACHER and EDWIZE, the strangulation of the Executive Committee's open mike, the Bolshevik regulation of the Delegates Assembly, and the refusal to grant ATRs the same level of representation as rubber roomers of yesteryear.
But at your ATR meeting last night you and the union reached a new low when you and your representatives tried to sabotage my attempt to organize ATRs. Since you have refused to share the sign-up list with us, I started one of our own. I passed around a pad to gain signatures and contact information. While I was focused on Amy's spirited presentation from the front row, one of the ATRs in the rear, probably thinking that the list belonged to the UFT, handed it to Ellen Driesen who was walking the microphone around the room during the Q & A. Driesen knew purpose and the provenance of the list since she saw me bring it to the back rows.
A teacher named Vincent DeSiano kept his eye on the Dreisen. He told me that she delivered the pad to you while you were was standing off to the side at the front of the room flanked by some reps including John Capuano, a new special rep but apparently apprenticed in the union's dark arts. Capuano retired from the conference room and proceeded to trash the list out of sight in the corridor. He ripped off and crumpled the the top sheet. Before he could swallow the evidence, DeSiano intervened, retrieved the sheet and the pad, and brought it to me.
I immediately confronted Capuano in the corridor. He declined to state his last name or position, which I learned later from another rep. Not yet apprised of your hand-off to Capuano, I complained to you. You said you would look into the situation, but I sensed no indignation. When I learned of your role, I confronted you. "I know nothing about it," you said, none too convincingly.
I demand a written apology and full explanation from you, Dreisen, and Capuano regarding your dirty trick, a squalid attempt to prevent ATRs from organizing. Bad enough that the UFT denies good standing ATRs the same level of representation once afforded to bad standing rubber roomers of the past.
Gotham Schools, March 4, 2013