Mike Turzai is Willing to Sacrifice Pennsylvania’s Students and Families to the Economy

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Mike Turzai says he’s furious with Pedro Rivera.

 

Why is the highest ranking Republican in Pennsylvania’s House of Representatives so angry with the state Secretary of Education?

 

Rivera said the Commonwealth’s public schools, which have been closed since mid March due to the Coronavirus pandemic, would not reopen until it was safe to do so.

 

If that means schools don’t reopen on time in the Fall, so be it.

 

Specifically, on Wednesday, Rivera said:

 

“At the end of the day, we’re going to make sure that the health and welfare of our students is first and foremost, front and center. And we’re not going to allow and ask students to return to school in an unsafe environment. We’re preparing for the best, but we’re planning for the worst.”

 

Turzai was so infuriated by this statement that he wrote a letter to Rivera – which the Pittsburgh area representative immediately shared with the media – he went on right wing talk radio to complain, and he posted a video on his Facebook page.

 

You know a Boomer is really mad when he goes on the social media.

 

Though his comments include his usual greatest hits against public schools and those greedy teachers, Turzai’s main point was simply science denial.

 

On Facebook, after a long list of activities that he said kids enjoy doing like sports and lab experiments, he said this:

 

“All of those can be done safely, and [kids] are not at risk unless they have an underlying medical issue. The fact of the matter is kids can develop herd immunity, and if you [Rivera] have not yet developed a plan where we can safely educate kids in schools, then you are going to have to rethink education forward…”

 

 

 
So there you have it, folks.

 

Turzai wants Pennsylvania to reopen schools on time whether scientists and health experts think it’s safe or not because – Turzai knows best.

 

Pennsylvania’s village idiot thinks he knows best about schools.

 

And as usual he’s as wrong as you can get.

 

The COVID-19 virus is relatively new. That’s what the 19 in its name means. It was only discovered in 2019.

 

It’s already killed more Americans than the Vietnam War (69,579 vs. 58,220). There’s no vaccine. And we really don’t know with much certainty how it will affect people in the long term.

 

And as to herd immunity, Sweden tried that – eschewing social distancing and letting people just get the virus – and the result is a death rate twice that of the US.

 

While it is true that children seem to be mostly asymptomatic, thousands have contracted the disease and several have died.

 

However, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) points out the bigger issue in the organization’s April report on its Website:

 

“Pediatric COVID-19 patients might not have fever or cough. Social distancing and everyday preventive behaviors remain important for all age groups because patients with less serious illness and those without symptoms likely play an important role in disease transmission.”

So if we reopen schools before it is safe to do so, we run the risk of (1) kids dying, (2) kids becoming carriers and bringing the disease to any adults they come into contact with who are much more susceptible and (3) teachers and school staff getting sick and dying.

 

Turzai has no problem with any of that.

 

He thinks the risk is worth it.

 

Why?

 

Well, that’s the party line he’s been handed by the Trump administration, and he does whatever he is told by his bosses.

 

Oh? The taxpayers thought THEY were his bosses?

 

No. You are just the chumps who kept re-electing him.

 

He doesn’t work for you.

 

He works for the Republican Party machine which is trying to turn people against Democratic governors like our own Tom Wolf.

 

And, man, does he want to be the next GOP challenger to Wolf. That’s really what this whole business is about – casting Turzai as even more radical than Scott Wagner, the last far right dope who tried for the governors mansion and was soundly defeated by voters.

 

He’s trying to show he’s just as stupid as Donald Trump. The President says we should all drink bleach to get rid of COVID-19? Well Turzai says we should let our kids get sick and die or make us sick.

 

Republicans truly have become the party of stupid.

 

The media helps covidiots like Turzai by uncritically reprinting his outrageous lies.

 

Turzai is like a man who calmly says it’s not raining outside while a thunderstorm beats down on the neighborhood. Instead of pointing out the truth, the media simply reports what Turzai said and at most gives equal weight to a meteorologist. But there is no OPINION about facts! And whether scientific consensus holds with his crackpot conspiracy theories about how the Coronavirus spreads or not IS a fact.

 

 

Is social distancing fun?

 

No.

 

If I could push a button and magically make the Coronavirus go away, I would.

 

But you have to live in the real world.

 

We have to get rid of the virus.

 

We need real tests to be able to tell if people have the virus. The Trump administration has completely botched that. This is why countries like South Korea are seeing hardly any new cases at all while our numbers are still extremely high.

 

Not to mention the fact that we have a bunch of morons who value their freedom to put themselves at risk without any thought to their responsibilities to the rest of society who they will also be endangering.

 

Until we can truly tell who has the virus, who had the virus, who is immune, and how to cure it, the prospect of reopening schools or the economy will be grim.

 

We should not put people at risk unnecessarily.
And we certainly shouldn’t put children at risk.

 

Don’t let fools like Turzai use a global pandemic to hawk their political agendas.

 

He goes on in his video to say that if the state’s public schools don’t open on time, we should consider things like universal cyber schooling, and (non sequitur alert!) charter and voucher schools.

 

It’s his everyday wish list wrapped in a Coronavirus-bow.

 

That’s how dumb this dummy thinks Pennsylvanians are.

 

I sure hope he’s wrong about that, too.


MYTHBUSTERS: A quick rebuttal to the other lies spewed in Turzai’s Facebook video

 

-Does Pennsylvania spend more than most other states on education?

 

We’re in the top 10 for over all spending, but we don’t distribute it equally. Kids in rich districts get tons of money. kids in poor districts get scraps. That’s why there’s a lawsuit demanding the state ensure all kids get an equitable education.

 

-Are pension payments high?

 

Yes, because while teachers and schools paid into the program, the state legislature deferred to pay its share for years and years. Now it’s due. We agreed to give state workers benefits when we hired them. We can’t go back on that now.

 

-Do administrators know if teachers are teaching online during the pandemic?

 

Yes. Parents, students AND administrators know because it’s all online. Administrators can monitor teachers MORE closely via the Internet – not less. That’s why there’s an overwhelmingly increased appreciation of what educators are doing now – it’s out in the open.

 

-Should educators call special needs students for three hours everyday?

 

Only if they aren’t already spending the majority of their days actually teaching students on-line. I’m on ZOOM meetings most days interacting with students on video conferences for almost as much time as I would in person if schools were open. And if you add in the amount of time it takes to come up with new lessons on learning platforms we’re unfamiliar with, program them in and troubleshoot them, most teachers are putting in MORE hours than usual.

 

 


 

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14 thoughts on “Mike Turzai is Willing to Sacrifice Pennsylvania’s Students and Families to the Economy

  1. Neoliberals, exemplified here by Mike Turzai, are firm believers in the free-market ideology. They profess that the goal and only thing that guides their conscience is to profit at all costs. So, in a system that demands the produce of wealth over all things, everything and everybody are expendable commodities.
    IMO, it is important that more people acknowledge that in the middle of the worst health crisis in generations, the free-market ideologues are placing the particular interests of the elites above and at the expense of the well-being of millions workers. We have to seriously and robustly debate this issue, and eventually decide if we all convert to this ideology that requires to sacrifice lives at the altar of the free-market.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Sergio. You diagnosed the problem correctly. The neoliberals and neofascist are destroying our society. But I think more than debate we need clarity of what they’re really saying. If someone embraces this culture of death, there’s not much we can do to convince them otherwise. They just need to own exactly who they are and what they believe.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Mike Turzai, Trump, Pence, and anyone else that is a pandemic denier and/or some greedy pukes that worship profits over the lives of others should be forced (chained to the floor without any safety gear at all) to spend the night in a hospital ward filled with patients struggling to survive COVID-19.

    Like

    • Not a bad idea, Lloyd. Let them exercise their freedom taking care of people at a COVID-19 ward in a hospital. Then let’s hear their opinion about opening up the country early.

      Like

  3. The effect of coronavirus on kids may be far more pernicious than we’ve thought so far:

    Maybe we wait on reopening schools?

    Like

  4. Again with the “sacrificing children” thing. Roughly 20 “children” (up to age 20) have died in the U.S. due to COVID-19 (most of whom had serious underlying conditions). For the sake of comparison, roughly 600 kids 14 and under die in car crashes each year, along with over 2,000 teens ages 16-19. So are you “sacrificing” your daughter every time you take her on an errand or trip?

    No one disputes that children can be asymptomatic carriers and can infect adults. That is certainly a valid concern in re-opening schools. But let’s at least be honest that the concern is protecting adults, not children and can we please stop with the hysterical alarmism about “sacrificing children”? Sheesh, you sound like the people in the 80s worried about Satanic cults.

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    • Dienne, I am a parent. I have a school age daughter. I love her more than anything else in this world. If I am concerned about her health during a pandemic, I hope you can forgive me. If someone suggested I send her into a room full of people sick with the flu (the regular everyday flu) I would not do it. If her school had a flu outbreak, I would keep her home until it passed. Isn’t that what good parents do? COVID_19 is brand new. We’ve only known about it for a little more than a year. We’re still learning about it. Only a few kids have died? Great. Are you willing to chance your child?

      However, you are correct that children acting as transmitters of this disease seems to be a bigger issue. In fact, it’s big enough to prove my point. I don’t want my daughter to die from this disease. I don’t want to die, either. Nor do I want my wife, my parents, my family, my friends or co-workers to die. These seem pretty valid concerns to me. If not, forgive me for having different thoughts and feelings than you.

      Like

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