US: ‘Loser teachers’ comment was ‘a chilling moment’ for educators around the world

You may recall that President Trump held a border wall rally in El Paso on Monday and that his eldest child, Donald Trump Jr., made a speech that roused the crowd.

The president’s son drew cheers when he urged young conservatives to “bring it to your schools” (though he didn’t say exactly what “it” was) because “you don’t have to be indoctrinated by these loser teachers that are trying to sell you on socialism from birth.”

The comment drew response on social media from teachers and others who don’t see educators in the same way as he does, with the hashtag #loserteachers. For example:

In this post, three teachers explain why Trump Jr.'s comment was more than simply mean.

Jelmer Evers of the Netherlands, Michael Soskil of the United States and Armand Doucet of Canada were featured authors in the 2018 book “Teaching in the Fourth Industrial Revolution: Standing at the Precipice.”

Evers is also the author of “Flip the System: Changing Education From the Ground Up.” Soskil was the 2017-18 Pennsylvania Teacher of the Year. Doucet was a recipient of Canada’s teachers award and is the author of “Teaching Life: Our Calling, Our Choices, Our Challenges.”

By Jelmer Evers, Michael Soskil and Armand Doucet

“You know what I love? I love seeing some young conservatives because I know it’s not easy. (Crowd applauds and shouts.) Keep up that fight. Bring it to your schools. You don’t have to be indoctrinated by these loser teachers that are trying to sell you on socialism from birth. You don’t have to do it. Because you can think for yourselves. They can’t.” (Crowd applauds and shouts again.) – Donald Trump Jr. in Texas on Feb. 11, 2019

For teachers around the globe, this was a chilling moment.

In a stadium filled with people chanting “USA, USA,” the son of the president of the United States called for hostility toward teachers because of their so-called political leanings. This is a message you would expect in an authoritarian regime, not at a rally for the U.S. president.

As teachers, we come from varied backgrounds and political leanings, but there is an undeniable core to who we are and what we stand for. Teachers nurture, care and protect students. Teachers champion the pursuit of knowledge.

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