Thursday, June 23, 2005

Bring 'em on

I like to criticize him a lot, so I should praise him, too: the Eduwonk spoke up for public schools in USA Today... today.

The article was celebrating the free-marketeers favorite son, Milton Friedman who spawned the idea of vouchers 50 years ago. Said Rotherham, aka Eduwonk:

Andrew Rotherham of the Progressive Policy Institute notes that there is "incredible organized opposition" to vouchers, notably from teachers unions, which fear the loss of public school teachers' jobs.

But unions aren't the only force opposing vouchers, he says. "Americans love their public schools ... and are very skeptical of things which seem to strike at the heart of that."

Amen and bravo. It's too easy -- and rude, really -- for conservatives to blast the "evil teachers' unions." It's much harder to take on a supermajority of average Americans who don't want their public schools to be harmed.

I welcome this voucher debate. It's a wedge issue that conservatives will find drives a wedge right through the heart of their base.

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