Surprise Is Optional…

     …but “outrage” is mandatory:

     Days after Gov. Wes Moore, D-Md., declared education a top priority for his tenure, Baltimore reported that zero students in 23 different public schools are proficient in math. Also, 93% of third through eighth graders tested below grade level in the same subject.
     Baltimore residents responded by blasting school officials and lawmakers for “fraud and corruption” which they claim is to blame for the low numbers.

     Well, yes: Zero is a low number. But perhaps we should be grateful that it isn’t even lower.

     The “public” school systems of this country are merely giant detention centers. Never mind their original mission, which was to Americanize the children of immigrant families. Today their principal function is to get children out of their homes and into classrooms where they learn…very little or nothing. But for the detainees to learn anything is far behind their primary goal of enriching the gaolers “educators” and their unions.

     What do the “educators” actively want their inmates to learn? Probably that they’re “oppressed.” The residents of Baltimore are 63% black, after all.

     The governor of Maryland says best-in-the-nation schools are one of his top priorities:

     On February 1, Gov. Moore touted his administration’s investment in public education, noting it is the largest investment in the state’s history.
     “We can no longer separate our vision for economic prosperity from the duty to make Maryland’s public schools the best in the nation,” he said during a speech earlier this month.

     But increased spending is nowhere correlated with improved educational attainment. That’s been known for decades. Perhaps Governor Moore knows it too, though I doubt that will stop him from bankrupting his state to provide lavish incomes to the “educators.” Governor Moore, by the way, is black. (Yes, he’s also a Democrat.)

     But the history of “public” education is one of local control, isn’t it? So the city of Baltimore must have a role to play in improving the “public” schools, right? You’d certainly think so, but:

     After FOX45’s Project Baltimore’s report uncovering 23 schools in Baltimore City had zero students who tested proficient in math, Mayor Brandon Scott continues to ignore questions about the problem….
     Thursday, FOX45 News sent questions to Mayor Scott’s Office asking:

  • Do you believe a change in school leadership is necessary in Baltimore? If not, why not?
  • How do you defend these results?

     No one from Mayor Scott’s communication team responded.

     Mayor Scott, by the way, is black. (Yes, he’s also a Democrat.) So are the majority of the members of Baltimore’s City Council. And every last one of them is a Democrat. Not one Republican or independent.

     The “CEO” of Baltimore’s city schools, Sonja Santelises, pulls down a $444,000 annual salary. That’s up from $375,000 just last year. Nice work if you can get it, eh? Yet during her tenure, as Miss Santelises’s salary has ballooned, student performance has monotonically declined. Miss Santelises, by the way, is black.

     Fox Baltimore attempted to interview a Maryland legislator – a white delegate, of course – about the problem. Here’s what happened:

     The determination of everyone involved, including the media, to ignore the correlations to race and political affiliation is beyond belief. Yet that having been said, it is true that everyone in the picture bears a share of the blame:

  • Maryland state government for mindlessly increasing “public” school funding;
  • Baltimore city government for not opening an outlet to alternative schooling;
  • Baltimore’s school board – which, by the way, is majority appointed rather than elected…and majority black – for not imposing some sort of discipline on the “educators;”
  • The parents of the students, who take little interest in their little darlings’ education;
  • And of course, the voters of Baltimore and Maryland, for trusting Democrats.

     But everyone claims to be “outraged.” Strange that such a high and widely shared emotion should have so little power to change matters.

     If your memory of the “Scott Presler cleanup” incident has failed you, allow your Curmudgeon to refresh it:

     Now and then, some well-meaning sort – usually a conservative, politically – picks up the Left’s slack:

     MAGA fan Scott Presler was tired of all the constant bickering in the media about Baltimore’s numerous problems, so he personally decided to do something about it. Rather than simply complain or join the online chorus, he has organized a massive trash clean up of the city set to take place in the near future. Presler just wants to help out in any way that he can.

     “I’m so tired of people saying, ‘We should do this, we should do that’….I was just like, ‘I’ve had, it. I’m going to go to Baltimore, even if it’s just me on a street corner picking up trash,'” he told The Epoch Times.

     On Saturday, July 28, the activist told his online following that anybody who wanted to come to help clean up Baltimore was welcome. He encouraged Trump supporters to wear Trump gear but told The Epoch Times that anybody can participate when the event takes place.

     “I just want the citizens of Baltimore to see [that] we do care. We do give a darn. And at the end of the day, we’re all American and if ya’ll are struggling in Baltimore and you guys need help, then we’re going to be there for you,” he said.

     Presler isn’t all talk and no action; he followed through. Over 170 volunteers descended on one of the worst districts in West Baltimore, attacked the trash and filth with energy, and cleaned it out. And what followed that effort? Why, this, of course!

     Look, we appreciate anyone who is willing to roll up their sleeves to help Baltimore. More than 170 people came from all over the country and cleaned up nearly 12 tons of trash, according to Mr. Presler’s Twitter feed. He doesn’t post any photos of the totality of the trash, so we’ll have to take his word for it….

     Whatever he says his motives were, Mr. Presler’s presence in Baltimore reinforces the tired image of our failing urban cores. That the poor people in this dilapidated city can’t take care of their own neighborhoods and all the public officials around them have failed as well. The bureaucratic, all-talk Democrats strike again. If a crowd of volunteers could clean up 12 tons of trash in 12 hours, how incompetent and helpless must Baltimoreans be if they can’t manage it in decades, right?…

     The silver lining in all of this is that the residents of West Baltimore did get a much needed cleaning up. That is something that they deserve. Streets and alleyways free of trash go a long way in improving the psyche of a neighborhood and its residents. Not to mention deterring crime. Mr. Presler says that people around the country are planning similar clean up events in their own communities. A loud round of applause for that as well. Spiffier neighborhoods are good for everyone.

     We also hope Mr. Presler keeps his promise to return to Baltimore once a month. It would definitely give his motives more credibility. It might also give him better perspective about the city’s problems than any single visit can provide. Maybe it could even lead him and his followers to advocate for federal housing, health care, transportation, education, criminal justice, civil rights and anti-poverty policies aimed at urban communities.

     In the meantime, we’ll see how clean the neighborhood still is when he returns in September.

     That’s the Baltimore attitude: “It’s somebody else’s responsibility. Don’t expect us to take a hand in it.” The Baltimore Sun said it, so it must be right! Right?

     Meanwhile, as Baltimore “public” school students fail to learn anything year after year – say, what are their reading proficiency scores like? Does anyone dare to ask? – Baltimore “public” school funding stands at over $21,000 per student per year. Yet “educators” everywhere will tell you that the problem is inadequate funding. Mention race, or Democrat dominance of Maryland and Baltimore politics, and they’ll tear you a new asshole. Your Curmudgeon reports; you decide.


1 ping

    • ontoiran on February 15, 2023 at 9:24 AM

    “Maybe it could even lead him and his followers to advocate for federal housing, health care, transportation, education, criminal justice, civil rights and anti-poverty policies aimed at urban communities.”

    just how much do they think we need to spend?

  1. Well, Orwell never did provide us a prequel to his novel on how the proles came to become dummies. Have we permitted “Progress” to take its course and do it for him? That dystopia may have served as a warning to you dear reader, but it surely seems to have served the wannabe despots better — along with Revelation — as a what needs to be done manual.

    Maybe I’ve said all this before. I don’t recall since it has been on my mind for quite some time. But I see their manipulation of human behavior and rewriting of history worth contemplating over and over again in order to summon the outrage needed to fight back.

  1. […] began as a comment to Surprise Is Optional…, about the revelations of the zero mark given baltimore students. But I feel I owe Fran a more […]

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