Now, why would this teacher ever be afraid of lovable old Chris Christie?"I’m scared to death to talk to you," the woman said."Why?" the Gov. Chris Christie asked."Because you scare me," she said, prompting laughter from the crowd.What a difference a week makes.At a town hall meeting in Roebling last week, a former Navy SEAL repeatedly interrupted the governor with a message he didn’t like: Students at Rutgers-Camden don’t want the campus taken over by Rowan University.The result was a defiant Christie calling Bill Brown, an erstwhile Democratic Assembly candidate, an "idiot" that will live in YouTube infamy.But today, at his first town hall since the heated exchange, Christie was more than happy to entertain the woman, a second-grade teacher, when she spoke up as he answered her question. He even instructed his staff to give her back the microphone so the audience in Kearny could hear her better.The difference was apparently in her demeanor.Instead of challenging Christie, the woman implored the governor and the state’s largest teachers union, of which she is a member, to "find a way to work together.""I’m a teacher who loves her job and I love my kids," she said. "I just wish our dialogue could become a dialogue, an open an honest exchange that doesn’t resort to name-calling and fear."
May 3, 2012:
I've said it before and I'll say it again: something is very wrong with this man. It's one thing to call out your political opponents. It's one thing to strut and swagger like a fool before your acolytes. We all know where Christie learned to do that:A teachers union run by "bullies" and the Democrats who support it are blocking education reforms that would give thousands of students in failing public schools a second chance, Gov. Chris Christie said yesterday before a crowd of school choice supporters.Christie delivered the keynote address to the American Federation for Children, an advocacy group based in Washington, D.C., that supports school choice and voucher programs. The group, composed partially of wealthy donors, has invested money in New Jersey and other states promoting bills that would offer private school vouchers to public school students, spokesman Malcom Glenn said.The group is holding a two-day summit in Jersey City to promote its agenda.The New Jersey Education Association’s use of a "$130 million slush fund" — the amount the state’s largest teachers union collects annually in dues — to "beat on the people who dare to speak out for children," however, is "immoral," Christie told a rapt audience of about 400."When you’re governor and you work in the school yard called Trenton, and you see a bunch of people laying on the ground bloodied and one guy standing against the fence with a smug smile on his face, you know that’s the bully," Christie said, speaking about the union leadership."You know what you do? You walk up to him with a big smile on your face and you punch him first," Christie said, earning a roar of applause. [emphasis mine]
But W used more restraint talking about Osama bin Laden than Chris Christie uses talking about the NJEA. It's weird and creepy and completely unbecoming of a man who holds the highest office in the state. And it's completely disingenuous of Christie's reformy cheerleaders to pretend that teachers and their union are being unreasonable in doubting Christie's sincerity when he engages in this kind of rhetoric.
There's a reason we teachers don't trust this guy (aside from the fact he lied to us - see the top of this blog): anyone who talks this way isn't trustworthy. You're creeping us all out, Chris - knock it off.