Arizona’s Misguided #RedForEd Teacher Salary Protests

#RedForEd. That’s Arizona teachers’ new slogan in their ongoing battle for higher pay. Organized by teachers’ unions, the RedForEders showed up at the state capitol starting on April 26 wearing red shirts.

Some critics contend the red symbolizes the movement’s ties to socialism. Rightwing hysteria? Red-baiting? A conservative cheap shot? Let’s look at the evidence.

“Critical Pedagogy”?

Arizona elementary music school teacher Noah Karvelis of Arizona Educators United led the strike. He is a partisan operative who has worked on several Democratic campaigns. He worked for a Bernie Sanders group — the Bernie Sanders who called himself a socialist — and as campaign manager. Karvelis is a student of “critical pedagogy.” It is a radical philosophy that uses Marxism to develop a radical critique of American society. Here’s an example, a book he recommended last November over Twitter: A Pedagogy of Anticapitalist Antiracism: Whiteness, Neoliberalism, and Resistance in Education by Zachary A. Casey.

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