Goldstein's piece comes on the heels of this from one of my fantastic commenters (much love, posters!):
I work in a district where a meeting was held. He talked with teachers from the district about our concerns "on the ground." It was reported there were issues brought to his attention by these teachers he had not considered. He also pressed some of his reform points. He was civil, polite and respectful. I think that's why he did not want the press there. He is secretly being nice to teachers. Wouldn't play well with the press and his carefully cultivated image. There weren't any administrators because he wanted them to beable to speak freely about their issues without fear of disiplinary actions form the district.How do we reconcile this with Chris the Bully, smacking down teachers, "taking the bat" to 76-year-olds, cutting his own people off at the knees because they work with the enemy, and all sorts of other petty nonsense?
I can't get into the man's head (thank the lord), but he certainly wouldn't be the first Republican who was caring and kind in person and a massive tool in public. He may also suffer from that peculiar conservative malady where there is no sympathy but plenty of empathy: they support gay rights when they have a gay family member, or cancer research when a loved one suffers, but have little interest if they or their families are not affected.
At the end of the day, how Chris Christie behaves in private really isn't very important. He may be very nice to Steve Goldstein, but he will never, ever, ever support ME. I won't presume to speak for the GLBTQ community, but it seems to me that's THE central issue for this constituency in New Jersey. If he won't support it, why support him, no matter how nice and polite he is in private?
Same for teachers. He is proposing to radically reduce our pay, our benefits, and our job protections. It's fine that he's a nice guy in private, but I really don't care. I'd take a narcissistic jerk who supports teachers over a great guy who decimates my profession any day.
One more thing: Steve, I can guarantee you Christie knew about your troubles with NJEA. Don't you think that might have had something to do with why he worked with you?