The right-wingers over at Americans for Prosperity and the Mackinac Center for Public Policy are urging teachers to leave the Michigan Education Association.
They claim it’s about freedom. (That word: freedom, I’m beginning to forget what it even means because it’s so often bastardized by the right to fit their litany of agendas.)
The Mackinac Center has a well-known fascination of wanting to dismantle public education as we know it and AFP is a front group for the Koch brothers. These are not organizations that care about people. They only care about increasing corporate profits.
The campaign isn’t about saving people money. This isn’t about so-called “freedom” in the workplace. This is an attack on working families and the collective power they gain when they organize.
As Jack McHugh, a Mackinac Center senior legislative analyst put it in an email: “Our goal is [to] outlaw government bargaining in Michigan, which in practical terms means no more MEA.”
Don’t believe the intentions of corporate front groups. They’ll gladly help you opt-out of the union, only to have your power in the workplace diminished. That’s exactly what they want.
There’s a popular right-wing talking point that MEA union dues go to political candidates, but that’s just a lie. And the Mackinac Center came under fire for using public email systems to spew their political messaging.
I got a call from a teacher the other day about the Mackinac Center’s opt-out campaign. The teacher said he was tired of the lies and misinformation that was being spewed from their camp — and guess what? So are a lot of other people.
One final note: The graphic below was posted by AFP Michigan. I’d just like to point out that without unions like the MEA, we wouldn’t have vacations (or overtime, or workplace safety regulations, or the 40 hour work week, and the list goes on).