[I am reposting this because it was wrongly attributed to Richard Schwartz, when in fact, as I just learned, it was written by the brilliant educator and photographer Susan Lee Schwartz. She sent it to me using her husband’s email, which caused my confusion.]

As readers know, I wrote an article <a href="http://www.detroitnews.com/story/opinion/2017/12/13/charter-schools/108585724/“>about how to help Detroit public schools. After 25 years of charters, it should be obvious that they have failed and they are now the status quo.

In response, a Michigan blogger associated with the DeVos-funded Mackinac Center misleadingly summarized my article as a plea for “sports teams,” when in fact it made the straightforward proposal that poor kids need what rich kids expect to get every day. But my critic insisted—absurdly—that my big ask was for “sports teams.”

Then came a rebuttal by our friend Susan Schwartz:

“I have been saying for a long time now, that no society or civilization survives if the decisions they make are based on lies.

“In this post-truth society, where propaganda is permitted to compete with facts in the name of ‘free speech, genuine journalism is Not practiced. In this day of ‘balanced’ news, where every opinion gets to be aired as if it truthful, serious conversation is impossible.

“An example of this appeared before me today, regarding the subject of the truth about charter schools. You see, I read and write at the blog of Dr. Diane Ravitch, a brilliant, dedicated educator who was Ass’t Sec’y of State for Bush — who told him how his NCLB act would end public education.

“She is one of Politico’s MOST ‘IMPORTANT AMERICANS’ and is recognized as the top Academic in America; Thus, the Detroit News invited her to write a plan to revive education in Detroit — a city which has been a Petri dish for reformers for 25 years, and where Everything they tried has failed.,

“Diane wrote this proposal.

“Today, she writes about “the response ” that the paper published. “He or she ignored everything I said to focus on what I mentioned in passing… claiming that I believe what public schools need is sports teams. Sports teams? What about the arts, a full curriculum, experienced teachers, small classes, a nurse and social worker, well-tended facilities, robotics, dramatics? Nope. Just “sports teams.””What about “poor kids need what rich kids take for granted.” Nope.”The writer is defending a failed status quo.”DIane’s article was clearly hitting some nerves, otherwise the misrepresentations and defense of charters would not be so calculated to ridicule what she actually wrote.

“Diane, my dear friend, the Daily News ‘balanced’ your expert report with the propaganda from The Mackinac Center for Public Policy– a non-profit free market think tank headquartered in Midland, Michigan — a well-known critic of public institutions, unions, and anything that is not clearly captured for profits.

“No wonder American cannot figure out anything. No wonder so many Alabamans can be sold a predator as a senatorial candidate.

“And, at this moment, the GOP ‘s media is selling a tax plan that is GRAND THEFT from the pockets of the middle class.


Thank you, Susan.

Mackinac, stop lying.