Friday, April 29, 2016

Views from the dark side: If you vote no on prop 123, you are against education funding

It's now out there and public. The ploy from the anti-education TeaPublicans should the May 17 vote go against Prop 123 is now quite clear. It's exactly as predicted.

First, here is Ann-Eve Pedersen's Facebook comment.

This is a very clear explanation of the dynamics in the Legislature and Governor's Office as to public education funding. We are in a lose-lose situation with these folks. And the author is absolutely right to ask all of us what we plan to do as individuals whether Prop. 123 wins or fails. Anti-public education legislators must be outed and ousted. We have been too nice for way, way too long.

Quoting from the Save Arizona's Public Education System Facebook post.

Today, State House Majority Leader Steve Montenegro (R-Avondale) offered his view on the effects of a rejection of Prop 123. "If the people of Arizona tell us no on 123 - what they are telling us is - they don't want more money to go to education," said Montenegro. "And what they want us to focus on are reforms."

Do you see the way Montenegro has spun the truth to fit his narrative? The people of Arizona don't want more money for education. The people of Arizona don't want to invest in our kids and future. What could be further from the truth?

This leadership is in the driver's seat. They make the rules. I think we have to understand that there's a reason so many education leaders and groups are advocating for the passage of 123. They know what they are dealing with and they've been dealing with it for years. Not only do we have a legislative majority of extremist, anti-public education folks, but we have an apathetic public. Education leaders did not feel they could do any better and didn't want to lose more money to lawyers so they made the decision to accept this settlement.

There has been so much speculation about what could happen if the Prop doesn't pass. I have seen people speculating that the court will hold Ducey and the #AZleg in contempt or whisk them away to jail. I have seen speculation that Dewitt will be able to sue and somehow get funds into our hands within months. But, we have to remember this is pure speculation and it is not based in reality. Who presides over the courts? Who nominates these judges? There are 5 justices on the Supreme Court and they are each appointed by the governor? Again, think about who has been the legislative majority in Arizona for a long, long time. I have seen speculation over what's going to come of the triggers in the Prop. The triggers are problematic--there is no argument there, but we have to acknowledge that they are passing bills every year that are just as damaging to the future of education.

I do think there's more to consider than just the ideological arguments of Prop 123. We have to deal with the reality of it passing or not passing. If this thing does not pass, are you going to show up at the Capitol in the following days or weeks to protest this Legislature? Are you willing to invest yourself completely, to the point of discomfort, to get these people out of office?

And then there will be a wait for money. That wait will be years. What do we tell our teachers and kids? How do we support them? I am not advocating in either direction for 123 here, I am asking questions about what comes next. What are the facts? What will this reality be? Will your retirement be impacted? Will we lose more teachers? We need the facts. We are already bracing for the hits in the new budget and the likely change in the funding formula.

I am not comfortable telling you at this time how to vote on this one. I echo your doubts, anger, and fear about the people in charge. But, I am asking you to look at this from a logical and realistic perspective, whether you support or oppose 123. We have to stay clear-headed about how we approach this. We cannot get angry and worked up and send in our ballots and clock out the next day. Because we already know what Steve Montenegro and Doug Ducey are going to say the next day.

So, make your decision. Send in your ballots. Whatever happens with Prop 123, remember, it's not the problem--it's a symptom of the problem. You have to be the solution.

Another way of putting it: Don't get mad - get even. Or: Get mad and then get even.


  1. I agree entirely with Sky Island Scriber. Prop 123 is not the problem or the solution. WE MUST BE THE SOLUTION! #VoteThemOut

  2. Vote yes on 123 in May to help our kids. Get the bastards in November.

  3. Vote yes on 123 in May to help our kids. Get the bastards in November.