Left intends to use public education as ‘wedge issue’ in coming national elections

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NORTHEAST N.C. — While working at the polls last week (trying to help a friend), I came across an elderly couple who told me that they believe the Republican Party is trying to destroy public education.

They cited the stipends paid by localities as one example of this argument and they also cited their belief that teacher assistants had been let go because of inadequate school funding. When asked what the possible purpose could be, if this were true, they suggested that the actions of the Republican-controlled state legislature were self-evident.

In a recent article, this newspaper suggested such a mindset would be the rallying cry for the Left in North Carolina. This brief encounter with a senior citizen couple confirms it.


In my response, I pointed out that a few years ago, a quarter-cent tax was proposed as an increase to the property tax rate – funds intended to cover additional education spending. But surprise of all surprises, the citizens who voted in that election rejected this very minimal increase.

So I asked this couple where the money was going to come from to pay for teacher assistants and other spending priorities? Their answer dealt with attempts by the Republican Party to privatize education, virtually the same words used recently by Elizabeth City – Pasquotank County Schools superintendent Larry Cartner.

Clearly, groups that believe that we can simply tax the rich to pay for these things are misguided at best. Typically, as my friend and State Treasurer candidate Dale Folwell says: “Money goes where it is wanted and stays where it is welcome.”

People with money have options on where to live that are not typically available to all of us. So we can claim that we can simply tax the rich to pay for these things, but when the rich leave — who are we going to tax then?

The interview with Superintendent Larry Cartner – published in this paper two months ago — cited the same issues that this elderly couple mentioned last week. He too said that the GOP-dominated legislature was attempting to decimate public education.

Likewise, the coming election will have the Federal Budget and deficit spending as a key element for voters to consider. But the Superintendent stated that he has made no plans for any contingencies if control of the White House changes hands.

Many observers believe our General Assembly is attempting to prepare for the future. When you look at the remarks of the Superintendent and this elderly couple, it sure looks like a coordinated message, does it not?