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I believe I’ve read and talked about education more than I did when I taught. This is my first year of retirement and I’m observing something I never thought I would see. Public education is under attack because our new Secretary of Education wants to take money away from our public schools in order to basically support private education.

In multiple arguments I’ve been told school choice and charter schools would improve education. All this would do is leave students behind with special needs or the financial ability to afford private education. The public schools would weaken to the point of non-existence. I’m confident Thomas Jefferson would be against this concept. The logistics of school choice would also produce nightmare scenarios. Most educators consider this concept like throwing a gate to the wind.

So here I am again sitting at my desk in hopes to participate in arguments that could save the most important institution of our nation. My monitor is shining its white light daring me to write something unique. Something that maybe, just maybe someone would want to read.

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We have the same enemy this year. They are in the same part of the world and are conspiring to do the same things. We tried to blow them up again this year and, of course, failed. I remember, not so long ago when the saying was, “when you blow up a rice paddy all you have left is a rice paddy”. I guess the same goes for a desert.

We have a new president this year. He started off in trouble because he can’t figure out where his ego ends and his mind begins. There are now new people trying to get rid of him. They just have a better excuse this year.

We have the same economy this year. We lead the world in spending to the point many economists state the world’s economy was saved because of the American need to have more. Of course this also means many of the people of the world are still struggling to survive. Some say that trying to change this reality is like throwing a gate to the wind.

We still have people to hate this year. With the election it seems we are starting to hate anyone or anything that doesn’t look like us. I have yet to figure out who us is. I thought it included the Afro-Americans or Jewish people. I don’t think we hate the Chinese even though they are probably our future enemies. We used to hate segments of our own society. It’s not like they ever did anything to us.

Now that I am older I fear many in our society will begin to hate retired people because they take too much money from our society in order to stay alive. It seems Medicare and Social Security will soon be under attack in order to finance programs our new government deem far more important. I wish older people would become more involved with their future and the future of their kids, grandkids, and sometimes even great grandkids.

Why don’t the old talk to us? Why is it so hard for them to explain their years of experience to those of us who try not to make the same mistakes of those who lived before us? Why is it so difficult for them to look into our eyes and explain how they got to become so old? Maybe they are too old and tired to throw any more gates to the wind. To paraphrase Harry Truman, “There is nothing new in this world. Only the history that we don’t know.”

Here I sit again staring into a monitor that is supposed to allow my soul to connect to my mind and then to my hands. I look down at my hands and see that they are a bit older than I remember them not so long ago. I kid my wife, who, by the way, is perpetually young, by telling her I am not getting older. I am just getting smarter. Who do I think I’m kidding? I understand that we are all getting older because trying to stay young is like throwing a gate to the wind.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author and are not not necessarily either shared or endorsed by iPatriot.com.

James Fabiano

James G. Fabiano Born: July 28, 1950 A retired teacher and writer living in York, Maine Education: College of the Holy Cross University of New England University of New Hampshire

 

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