A California parent group is calling out the hypocrisy of the Berkeley teachers union President after he was seen dropping his child off for in-person instruction despite deeming in-person schooling as “unsafe.”
Matt Meyer, president of the Berkeley Federation of Teachers, has said Berkeley schools should only reopen for in-person learning when educators are vaccinated and it is considered “safe.”
Guerilla Momz, a parent group advocating for the re-opening of public schools in Berkeley, Ca, uploaded a YouTube video showing Meyer dropping his daughter off for in-person learning at a private school in Berkeley.
In a statement to Fox News, Meyer said that there were “no public options for kids her age.”
“There are major differences in running a small preschool and a 10,000 student public school district in terms of size, facilities, public health guidance and services that legally have to be provided,” Meyer said to Fox News. “We all want a safe return to school. The Berkeley Federation of Teachers is excited that Berkeley Unified will be reopening soon with a plan, supported by our members and the district, to get our students back in classrooms starting later this month.”
According to Berkeleyside, the Berkeley Unified School District has reached a tentative agreement with the Berkeley Federation of Teachers to reopen public schools this spring, once district staff members are vaccinated.
The district is also coordinating a series of mass vaccination events for employees beginning February 22nd.
“This plan is the gold standard,” Meyer said, according to Berkeleyside. “Social distancing, mask-wearing, and vaccinations for adults will create the safest environment for in-person education for the end of this year.”
The Guerilla Momz group argued that the public schools have been blocked from re-opening for a year.
“The only thing keeping our schools closed is cowardice – and union donations to politicians,” Guerilla Momz said.
“[Matt Meyer] takes his child to private school every weekday while blocking Berkeley from opening schools because it is not safe.”
“Meanwhile, our children are suffering learning loss, social isolation, and mental health breakdowns.”
“Open our public schools now. Full time. In person,” Guerilla Momz demands. “Not just for your child. For every child.”
Follow Annaliese Levy on Twitter @AnnalieseLevy
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Shanghai: China’s Potemkin Village
Following a recent outbreak of COVID-19, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has imposed a month-long draconian lockdown on the residents of Shanghai. The CCP has used the outbreak to persecute its own citizens, including through forced evictions and quarantines, and placing alarms on doors to prevent COVID-19 people from leaving their homes. The harsh measures have resulted in food and healthcare shortages and separation of families.
But of course, we wouldn’t know that by reading the CCP-run press readily available in the United States. Instead of presenting the facts, the CCP engages in a comprehensive propaganda campaign that props up Shanghai as a Chinese Potemkin village. The CCP media asserts that China’s actions in Shanghai are benevolent and wise, while Western criticism is a product of malice. Chinese state-run media also insists that the Shanghai lockdown promotes economic stability in China and the world.
Claim 1: China Has the Best Policy for Combating COVID-19
The CCP media portray the Shanghai lockdown as the best and ideal policy. As cited by a XinhuaNet editorial, “China’s dynamic zero-COVID approach” is “the best option to save lives,” according to a “Rwandan researcher and publisher,” “…a miracle for us to learn,” according to a Kenyan scholar, and “a very ideal response,” according to Ethiopia’s National COVID-19 Response Task Force Coordinator. According to CCP media, Chinese citizens have greeted the Shanghai lockdown warmly, even with “[a] mixed sense of intensity, unity and hopefulness,” according to China Daily.
Claim 2: The West Hypocritically Defames China
The CCP press also accuses the West of lying about the Shanghai lockdown, and using COVID policies for nefarious ends. According to XinhuaNet, “Shanghai…has never imposed what Western media described as a ‘lockdown.’” Other CCP editorials actually accuse the West of malice. One Global Times editorial claims that the lockdown “has been deliberately exaggerated by the West.” Another Global Times editorial asserts that the Western approach of “coexisting with the virus” amounts to a way “…to drive out a large number of the vulnerable people with low immunity,” and a form of “cruel social Darwinism.”
Claim 3: China’s COVID Policies Result in an Economic Windfall to China and the World
The CCP also portrays the lockdown as necessary to achieve great economic growth in China and beyond. One Global Times editorial, while conceding that the lockdown amounted to a “sealing-off,” it is “a temporary measure to better resume work and production and to make the economy and society function more effectively. Its effectiveness has been proven.” According to another Global Times editorial, China’s policy is “widely considered to be the best strategy…to both contain the epidemic and ensure stable economic development.”
In an Orwellian fashion, Chinese press claims that China is solving, not causing, the world’s economic problems. According to XinhuaNet, “China has played a decisive role in stabilizing the global economy and resuming the supply chain disrupted by COVID-19.” Citing a Bloomberg article, the same XinhuaNet editorial claims that China “has prevented a huge number of deaths at home and ensured that everything from iPhones and Teslas to fertilizer and car parts continues to flow to the rest of the world.” Chinese citizens, of course, are collateral damage: Ji Qiwei, vice-general manager of SAIC Motor Passenger Vehicle, stated that “The domestic market may be impacted a little by the COVID-19 outbreak this year, but our export market will continue to see strong growth,” according to China Daily.
While the world continues to suffer economic and human damage as a result of COVID-19, China continues to revise history regarding its role. Through its propaganda in its English publications of Xinhua, China Daily, and Global Times, China seeks to portray itself as a benevolent force in the fight against the virus.
You can follow Steve Postal on Twitter @HebraicMosaic
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