It’s about time to fund our damn schools

It’s about time to fund our damn schools

This is where the rubber meets the road, folks. Over the next few weeks, many compromises will need to be made in Augusta to negotiate a two-year state budget and avoid a government shutdown. We cannot let our kid’s education become one of those compromises.

If you’re in the resistance, you’re no doubt exhausted and overwhelmed from taking action against the Trump administration’s constant aggressions, including those against our national education system. So, I offer you a brief respite from the national circus and the opportunity to resist the madness here in Maine. Half of our national legislators won’t even show up to our town halls, but here’s a chance to speak directly and boldly to your state representatives and senators.

The Progressive Women of Maine are asking you to come to the State House for just one hour on Wednesday, May 31 from 9am-10am. We’ll make it clear that Maine citizens expect the state budget to include full 55% funding of our schools, as well as the implementation of Question 2 that passed in November. Maine voters agreed that we should tax the top two percent just a bit more (they still won’t pay as much as the middle class) to fund our schools while making our tax system more fair. We shouldn’t be cutting health care or infrastructure to pay for education.

(For an in-depth discussion of the issues at hand, check out this recent Maine Calling episode.)

The frustration about education is palpable across the state. What kind of governor doesn’t want proper funding to go to our children’s future? How many times do we, as Maine citizens, need to vote for dedicated financial support for our schools? What do you call a legislator who wholly ignores the will of the people and does whatever he or she wants instead?

My late grandmother, a devout Catholic, had a word for politicians who didn’t do right by people: every time one of them came on the television, she’d lean over to me with pursed lips and profess solidly, “that jackass.”

Now, if my 92-year-old G-ma Gloria can use language like that and still take her right place in heaven, then I’m certain with a little grace we can make our voices heard this Wednesday at the State House and tell our governor and legislators to “Fund our Damn Schools.” It’s about time.

About author

Liz Smith
Liz Smith 1 posts

Liz Smith runs a non-profit that assists activists and media-makers in creating measurable impact and is the founder of the online action group, Progressive Women of Maine. She also serves as Chair of the Knox County Democrats and on the Executive Committee for the Maine Democratic Party.

Comments

You might also like

Maine Legislature

Ditching personality politics for bold policies is how to win working class, rural Maine

Is it smarter to avoid taking bold policy positions, or embrace a populist, progressive agenda? Is it smarter to run on one’s personal story and biography, or outline a substantive

public assistance

Gov. LePage’s attacks on poor children and elderly test the limits of separation of powers

The Fourth of July strikes me as a good time to think about a foundational concept in American politics, and June has provided some perfect object lessons in Washington and

podcast

Budget negotiations are more difficult when Democrats don’t stand for fair taxes

This week on the Beacon Podcast, Taryn has an observation, a question and a reflection about the state budget and argues that we should still have faith in the referendum