Archives for the month of: October, 2018

Robert Skeels does a deep dive into Marshall Tuck’s record and decides that his ethnocentric values do not suit him to be the next Superintendent of Public Instruction.

Based on his experience in the charter sector, Tuck claims to be an educator, but Skeels pegs him as a banker.

Tuck’s friends in the charter industry claim that Tuck was a great success but Skeels questions their data.

Skeels writes:

Business banker Marshall Tuck is running for California State Superintendent of Public Instruction again. He’s backed by the same ideologically charged billionaires as the last time — several of whom supported reactionary measures like Proposition 8. With nearly unlimited funding, voters will be deluged with Tuck’s messaging. There’ll be plenty of unsubstantiated claims that he ran successful schools.

Marshall Tuck is running for California State Superintendent of Public Instruction again, backed by the same ideologically charged billionaires as the last time — several of whom supported reactionary measures like Proposition 8.

Those ads won’t reveal the truth about Tuck’s record. There’ll be no mention that when he ran the Green Dot Charter Corporation, one of his high schools “achieved” the dubious distinction of back-to-back years of absolutely zero students scoring proficient on the mathematics portion of the California State University (CSU) entrance examination. There won’t be discussion of how, under Tuck, one Partnership for Los Angeles Schools’ (PLAS) high school went five years without achieving even twenty percent of students scoring proficient on either the mathematics or the English portion of those same CSU exams. Five years. These awful proficiency rates were reflected in Scholastic Aptitude Tests (SAT) scores as well. Under Tuck’s “leadership” the schools he managed were among the very lowest scorers on the SAT in Los Angeles County, year after year.

Tuck’s record of terrible academic results isn’t the only issue that will be carefully obscured. His abject treatment of students of color, in a fashion much like his contemporary counterparts Tom Horne and John Huppenthal in Arizona, is something he works hard to hide. It’s time to shine a bright light on this.

Using their positions of authority, Tuck, Horne, and Huppenthal closed down popular, research proven, Ethnic Studies programs. Tuck did it at PLAS schools like Santee High School when he was their “CEO.” The other two did it while they were Superintendents of Public Schools in Arizona. Tuck went a step further than the others — he also restricted and shuttered both Heritage Language Programs and Dual Language Immersion programs. These important language programs were well regarded and research proven. The language program closures and restrictions were so egregious that a Uniform Complaint Cause of Action was filed jointly by Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund and Public Counsel Law Center on behalf of the families whose civil rights Tuck violated. Additionally, Tuck closed down other critical programs including health education .

In the end, after a long battle, Horne and Huppenthal’s attacks on students of color by eliminating Ethnic Studies in Arizona were defeated in court. The judge’s opinion noted that the two were “capitalizing on race-based fears.” Both politicians would later find themselves voted out of office. Tuck, whose record on these programs mirrors that of Horne and Huppenthal, is facing a California with very different values than his. In 2016, in contradiction to Tuck’s penchant for opposing bilingualism, Californian voters passed Proposition 58 — reestablishing bilingualism as mainstream. Furthermore, school districts have been passing resolutions instituting Ethnic Studies programs. On the state level advances for Ethnic Studies like AB-2016 have proven that Californians don’t share Tuck’s aversion to programs that celebrate diversity and encourage youth to explore their history.

Dr. Bill Smith of Johnson City, Tennessee, watched the two candidates for Governor of Tennessee debate and focus on education as key to the state’s future.

The Republican, Bill Lee, swore his allegiance to the party line and endorsed charters and vouchers. He goes full Betsy DeVos.

The Democrat, Karl Dean, pledged his devotion to “public education” and his love for charter schools, which have failed in Tennessee. Dean goes partial Betsy DeVos.

Surely both men know that the Tennessee Achievement School District spent $100 million of Race to the Top money to turn low-scoring schools over to charters, and the ASD was a colossal failure. $100 million wasted.

Why do they want more of the same?

Dr. Smith writes with more wisdom than either candidate:

It’s no secret that non-profit charter schools often divert money intended for children’s instruction to other priorities. For example, many charters compensate their “CEOs” two to three times the salaries of principals who perform the same functions in regular public schools. Vision Academy in Nashville pays its two top executives (a married couple) a combined $562,000, while reportedly charging students for textbooks. (Imagine the outcry if a local public school engaged in such financial behavior.)

The Oct. 9 debate between Lee and Dean was — like the rest of their campaign — noteworthy for its civility. They both seem to be good, decent men, and they exhibit many of the leadership qualities we should all want in our governor. Moreover, when you listen to them talk about educational reforms, their arguments seem very compelling — until you carefully consider the facts.

Lee is either delusional or disingenuous to assert that he would do nothing to diminish public education but is fully in favor of vouchers and charters. The point of offering these choices is to diminish public education, and the evidence indicates that it is working.

Further, when he says we should give students educational alternatives, identify the “best practices” to emerge from these settings, and then implement these model approaches in public schools, he is describing the central promise of the charter school movement when it first emerged in the 1990s. In the beginning, the plan was that charter schools would be relieved of regulatory oversight so that they could explore creative practices and then export their best ideas to public education. Unfortunately, that never happened.

This failure raises a fundamental question that Lee, Dean and other charter advocates do not address (in my opinion, because they can’t). If charter schools are as wonderful as they claim, why won’t they tell us what makes these schools so effective? If you knew the cure to a dreadful disease, would you keep it to yourself?

The charter folks remind me of the old snake oil salesmen who appeared unexpectedly one morning, sold their mysterious elixirs, and slipped out of town at dusk. They made incredible claims about the benefits found in those opaque bottles, but they never told anyone what the ingredients were. “Trust me,” they said. “It’ll cure whatever ails you.”

Let’s be clear. Advocates of charters and vouchers can’t tell us why these educational alternatives are better because they simply aren’t. Moreover, most of the people pushing for choice don’t want to improve public education. They want to undermine it so that they can profit from educational privatization. The only reason they want relaxed regulatory oversight is so that they can funnel as much of our tax dollars as possible into their own pockets without us noticing.

I believe that Dean is sincere about his support for public education, and I will vote for him for that reason. To his credit, he opposes all forms of choice except for non-profit charters, and I hope that he will realize one day that they too have failed to live up to expectations. He is kidding himself when he denounces the undermining effects of vouchers on public education while simultaneously advocating for charters (even in a limited capacity) and not seeing that they too draw resources away from public schools.

Democrats who still think there’s a place for charter schools need to reconsider that position. If there was ever a useful role for charters in our educational system, it has long since been high-jacked and corrupted beyond redemption. Charters are simply one more weapon for market fundamentalists to employ in their effort to privatize public education.

Laura Chapman, tireless researcher, did a cursory scan of the abundance of billionaire cash flowing into charter schools, enhanced by another $400 million from the U.S. Department of Education. There are literally dozens more foundations and organizations pouring money into the charter industry, such as Reed Hastings (Netflix), Eli Broad, Michael Bloomberg, John Arnold (ex-Enron), Michael Dell (computers), the Fisher Family (Old Navy, the Gap), and many more.

Why is the U.S. Department of Education pouring hundreds of millions of dollars into this well-funded industry? Betsy DeVos recently handed out $399 million to jump-start new charter schools, even in districts and states where there is no demand. Next year, Congress has allotted $450 million for charters, whether they are wanted or not.

What is clear from Laura’s review is that charter schools are not in need of funding. They are in need of accountability, transpency, stability, supervision, regulation, and integrity.

She writes:


I just did an analysis of these USDE grants, announced by Politico, in tandem with the Walton Foundation 2020 plan for charter school grants. Of course charters have many big funders. For example the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has propped up the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools and the National Association of Charter School Authorizers with grants to date of $35,954,074.

The 2020 plan from the Walton Family Foundation (prepared in 2015) begins with the prideful claim that the Walton Family Foundation (Walmart wealth) has supported 1 in 4 charter schools.

The 2020 plan provides for a five year investment totaling $1 billion for charter schools and supporters.

Between the Walton Family Foundation and USDE grants, thirty states will see inflows of funds for charters and with only a few exceptions (five), these states will have funds from both sources (in addition to many other funders).

The Walton Foundation is supporting charter-friendly STATE policies in Arizona, Arkansas, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Wisconsin.

For 2018-2019, the Walton wealth is supporting charterizing in: Arkansas (any district); California (Los Angeles specific boundaries, two grants]; California (Oakland, two grants), Colorado (Denver, two grants), Georgia (Atlanta, two grants), Indiana (Indianapolis, two grants), Louisiana (New Orleans, two grants), Massachusetts (Boston); New Jersey (Camden), New York (New York City, two grants), Oklahoma (any district), Tennessee (Memphis, Shelby County), Texas (Houston ISD; San Antonio, two grants), Washington, DC (two grants). “Any district” means there are no constraints on location. Most of the two-for grants are for facilities support in addition to operational support.

All of the Walton and USDE grants are for charter school “startups,” expansions, “replications” (as in a franchise), or charter school facilities financing. It is not surprising that most of the USDE grants are complementing those of the Walton Foundation.

It is easy to forget that NCLB provided for various schemes to finance charter schools (in addition to federal funds). Now there are specialty companies in the business of building out the charter sector. Here are some of the services advertised by one of these.

Begin quote: “Charter School Capital provides flexible funding solutions so charter schools can gain ground and achieve success. Our charter school working capital financing enables school leaders the flexibility and stability to support everyday expenses and — importantly — fuel their growth.

We help charter schools access working capital so they can:
Expand or grow programs, Open a new charter school, Provide new technology in the classroom, Hire and/or develop staff, Address budget shortfalls and delays (deferrals, holdbacks, etc.) gracefully, Improve transportation options, Enrich educational programs, Buy new equipment,

Facilities Financing
Our facilities financing product is a long-term lease that allows schools to access funding through all stages of growth – from start-up to expansion through maturity. As a long-term partner, our team works closely with you as we explore budgetary and financial options to support your facilities needs.
Why long-term lease financing? You can finance 100% of project costs, You can retain control of your facility, You can plan on long-term affordability, You can enhance your existing building or finance new construction, Your lease can be customized to your school’s model – whether blended learning, traditional, etc., Tenant improvements can be financed in your lease, Can be used as take-out financing for an existing bond or potential bridge to bond financing.

We currently own 42 school properties in 11 states, more than $350 million in assets. Schools range in attendance from 135 to 1,200 students with educational programs that include college preparatory, art-focused, STEM schools, and others. Our goal is to aid charter leaders so they have accessible, flexible financing options to meet their schools needs today and the needs they have in the future.

Loan Details
The Charter School Capital loan product is a flexible financing solution that can help schools reach their enrollment and educational goals.Available to schools of all ages, Refinance options available throughout the school year to accommodate growth, ƒ Payment plans can be customized to suit school needs, Access to funding in as few as 30 days from date of initial request, Loan amounts based on annual state aid revenue and student count, allowing for increasing scale with growth, NO RESTRICTIONS PLACED UPON UTILIZATION OF FUNDS. (caps are mine, End Quote.) https://charterschoolcapital.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/csc-product-1pager_WC_Facilities_Loans_FINAL.pdf

Here is the Walton 2020 plan: https://8ce82b94a8c4fdc3ea6d-b1d233e3bc3cb10858bea65ff05e18f2.ssl.cf2.rackcdn.com/04/ab/555b3ee54d3792eebaf27a803400/k12-strategic-plan-overview-updated.pdf

Ethan Siegel, a senior contributor to Forbes, understood what was happening to public education well before the wave of teacher strikes in the spring of 2018. America was literally destroying public education with ill-advised policies and was not reacting to the failure of these policies with common sense. (Please ignore the use of the word “industries” in his article, as he is addressing it to business people.)

The ultimate dream of public education is incredibly simple. Students, ideally, would go to a classroom, receive top-notch instruction from a passionate, well-informed teacher, would work hard in their class, and would come away with a new set of skills, talents, interests, and capabilities. Over the past few decades in the United States, a number of education reforms have been enacted, designed to measure and improve student learning outcomes, holding teachers accountable for their students’ performances. Despite these well-intentioned programs, including No Child Left Behind, Race To The Top, and the Every Student Succeeds Act, public education is more broken than ever. The reason, as much as we hate to admit it, is that we’ve disobeyed the cardinal rule of success in any industry: treating your workers like professionals..

The first and largest problem is that every educational program we’ve had in place since 2002 — the first year that No Child Left Behind took effect — prioritizes student performance on standardized tests above all else. Test performance is now tied to both school funding, and the evaluation of teachers and administrators. In many cases, there exists no empirical evidence to back up the validity of this approach, yet it’s universally accepted as the way things ought to be.

Imagine, for a moment, that this weren’t education, but any other job. Imagine how you’d feel if you found yourself employed in such a role…

You have, on any given day, a slew of unique problems to tackle. These include how to reach, motivate, and excite the people whose education and performance you’re responsible for. It includes imparting them with skills that will enable them to succeed in the world, which will be vastly different from state-to-state, county-to-county, and even classroom-to-classroom. Gifted students, average students, special needs students, and students with severe disabilities are all often found in the same class, requiring a deft touch to keep everyone motivated and engaged. Moreover, students often come to class with problems that place them at a competitive disadvantage, such as food insecurity, unaddressed physical, dental, and mental health issues, or home life responsibilities that severely curtail their ability to invest in academics.

If your goal was to achieve the greatest learning outcome possible for each of your students, what would you need to be successful? You’d need the freedom to decide what to teach, how to teach it, how to evaluate and assess your students, and how to structure your classroom and curriculum. You’d need the freedom to make individualized plans or separate plans for students who were achieving at different levels. You’d need the resources — financial, time, and support resources — to maximize the return on your efforts. In short, you’d need the same thing that any employee in any role needs: the freedom and flexibility to assess your own situation, and make empowered decisions.

In public education, if teachers do that, they are penalized to an extraordinary extent. Passion is disincentivized, as whatever aspects you’re passionate about take a back seat to what will appear on the standardized test. Expert knowledge is thrown to the wayside, as curiosity and engagement are seen as distractions. A vision for what successful students look like is narrowed down to one metric alone: test performance. And a teacher’s evaluation of what skills are important to develop is treated as less than nothing, as anything that fails to raise a student’s test score is something that everyone — the teacher, the school, and the student — are all penalized for.

If this were common practice in any other industry, we’d be outraged. How dare you presume to micromanage the experts, the very people you hired to do a difficult job full of unique challenges to the best of their abilities! Yet in education, we have this unrealistic dream that a scripted, one-sized-fits-all strategy will somehow lead to success for all. That we can somehow, through just the right set of instructions, transform a mediocre teacher into a great one.

This hasn’t worked in any walk of life, and it doesn’t work in education. If we were serious about improving the quality of public education in this country (or any country), we wouldn’t focus on a one-size-fits-all model, whether at the federal or state level. We would fully fund schools everywhere, regardless of test scores, economic concerns, or teacher quality. We would make a concerted effort to pay desirable wages to extremely qualified, expert-knowledge-level educators, and give them the support resources they need to succeed. And we’d evaluate them across a variety of objective and subjective metrics, with any standardized testing components making up only a small part of an evaluation.

I venture a guess: Mr. Siegel is either the son of a teacher, is married to a teacher, or spent some time as a teacher. Glad he is writing for Forbes.

Please consider signing this letter.

Add your name to the demands from Pittsburgh Jewish leaders to Trump

President Trump, your words, your policies, and your Party have emboldened a growing white nationalist movement. The violence against Jews in Pittsburgh is the direct culmination of your influence.

We demand you and the Republican Party:

Fully denounce white nationalism,

Stop targeting and endangering all minorities,

Cease your assault on immigrants and refugees, and

Commit yourself to compassionate, democratic policies that recognize the dignity of all of us.

—leaders of Bend the Arc: Pittsburgh

(To add your organization, synagogue, or group to this letter, please go here.)

The massacre of 11 Jews in a Pittsburgh synagogue comes at a time when the Trump administration, the Republican Party and their enablers — at all levels — have fomented hate, fear, and white nationalism in our country.

They have targeted the Muslim community, immigrants and refugees, people of color, and LGBTQ people, and in recent weeks we have seen a marked escalation in their use of antisemitic images, rhetoric and conspiracy theories.

The Trump administration, the Republican Party and their enablers have provoked violence against our communities. Our blood is on their hands.

It is time to rise up together to demand our safety. We refuse to be divided. We refuse to be isolated from each other. We will outlive their hatred.

Now, we’re asking Jews and allies across the country to add your names to the demands of Jewish leaders in Pittsburgh who are rising up to demand the White House renounce white nationalism so we can all be safe.

Read the full open letter to Trump from Jewish leaders in Pittsburgh here.

The New York Daily News reported that friends of the charter school industry dropped $130,000 into Cuomo’s well-funded campaign as it comes to a close. Cuomo is comfortably ahead in the polls, but he always like to raise more money than he needs. Charter supporters are worried that Democrats might win control of the State Senate, which has supported charter schools. So they need to cement their ties with Cuomo–with lots of dollars.

Cuomo, a charter school backer who took heat on the issue during his Democratic primary against actress Cynthia Nixon, received three of his biggest donations the past three weeks from individuals with strong ties to the industry, including $25,000 each from Jim Walton and Carrie Walton Penner, the son and granddaughter, respectively of Walmart founder Sam Walton.
The governor also received $40,000 from Sonia Jones, a yoga booster for youth and wife of billionaire Paul Tudor Jones, a big backer of charter schools.

He also received $15,000 from the Great Public Schools PAC created by Eva Moskowitz, the CEO of Success Academy Charter Schools, and $15,100 from New Yorkers for Putting Students First, a pro-charter political action committee.

Billy Easton, executive director of the teacher union-backed Alliance for Quality Education, knocked the donations to Cuomo.
“Here we go again with Andrew Cuomo and his pay-to-play relationship with charter schools,” Easton said. “The Wall Street charter donors lost big when the Independent Democrats got wiped out in the primary, they are investing in Andrew Cuomo now in hopes that he will be the one person still carrying their water in Albany.”

Cuomo, according to his latest disclosure filing made public Monday morning, has $6.75 million left in his campaign account after spending $3.1 million, largely on TV ads, the past three weeks and raising $638,687 during the same period.

This article appeared on The New Yorker website last Saturday.

The violence that took place this Shabbat morning at the Tree of Life congregation in Pittsburgh is the fear of every synagogue, Hillel, day school, and Jewish community center in this country. It is the ancient Jewish expectation of persecution—when, where, has it not been with us?—married to American reality: a country saturated with guns and habituated to quotidian massacre, plagued by age-old racism and bigotry, which have lately been expertly inflamed by the holder of the highest office in the land.

For the past few years, American Jews have glanced warily at Western Europe, where anti-Semitism, never dormant, is once again on the rise. The British Labour Party has been riven by accusations of anti-Semitism among its leadership. French Jews have emigrated to Israel in unprecedented numbers. In Sweden, synagogues and Jewish centers have been firebombed. After 9/11, American synagogues and community centers became barricaded spaces, outfitted with concrete sidewalk barriers and metal detectors, so that going to services felt like going to the airport. The concern then was an external threat.

There has long been a casual assumption that homegrown anti-Semitism could not happen here, that “The Plot Against America” would remain the fantastical counter-factual that Philip Roth intended it to be. And yet, the warning signs have become increasingly clear. Since the 2016 Presidential campaign, anti-Semitic vitriol has exploded on the Internet. Neo-Nazis tweet swastikas and Hitler-era propaganda of leering, hook-nosed rabbis. Holocaust deniers discuss “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion” in plain view. Jewish journalists and other public figures have had their profile pictures Photoshopped onto images of lampshades and bars of soap. The name “George Soros” is no longer invoked as a dog whistle, but as an ambulance siren. “The Jewish question” is debated on alt-right blogs and news sites. In the run-up to the election, anti-Semites began to put Jewish names in sets of triple parentheses—a yellow star for the digital age, by which to un-assimilate the assimilated. Jews rushed to claim and defang the symbol, turning it into a voluntary declaration of pride, but the scar of its origins remains. For a time after Donald Trump’s election, I collected screenshots of racist and anti-Semitic hate speech I came across. Then I stopped. The proof was everywhere, plain as day.

It seems clear that anti-Semitism has burrowed into the American mainstream in a way not seen since the late nineteen-thirties and early nineteen-forties, when it also fused easily with conservative isolationist fervor and racism. In “These Truths,” her masterful new history of this country, my colleague Jill Lepore writes about the anti-Semites of that period, who saw “mass democracy and mass culture as harbingers of the decline of Western civilization.” In 1939, the German-American Bund held a pro-Nazi rally at Madison Square Garden, attended by twenty thousand people; you can watch footage of it here, and, as vile as it is, I suggest that you do. Amid the sieg-heils, you will see Fritz Kuhn, the Bund’s leader, railing against the “Jewish-controlled press” as he lays out his vision for a “socially just, white, Gentile-ruled United States.” “We, with our American ideals, demand that the American government shall be returned to the American people who founded it,” he says, to cheers.

Not long ago, I came across a description—published in the March, 1939, bulletin of the men’s club at New York’s Ansche Chesed synagogue—of a counter-rally held a couple of weeks later, at Carnegie Hall. “Stressing that racial intolerance was un-American, speaker after speaker denounced the activities of the German-American Bund,” the bulletin reports. “The need for protecting our democratic processes was on the lips of everyone and strong sentiment of solidarity to protect democracy and racial and religious freedom that goes with it was prevalent throughout.” That sense of solidarity, which, for me, as for many, is at the moral center of the American-Jewish experience, was explicitly attacked in Pittsburgh on Saturday. It has been reported that, a few weeks ago, the alleged gunman furiously railed on social media against hias, the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, which was founded, at the turn of the last century, to help the waves of Jewish immigrants who left imperial Russia for America. The organization later worked to resettle Jews fleeing Nazi Germany, and currently serves immigrants and refugees of all backgrounds. It is a bitter irony that that sense of common cause has now been further strengthened, as the Tree of Life joins Mother Emanuel A.M.E. Church, in Charleston, South Carolina, Dar Al-Farooq Islamic Center, in Bloomington, Minnesota, and so many other houses of worship as points on a dark map of ongoing American tragedy.
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NPE Action endorses David Garcia for Governor of Arizona. The current governor is a disaster, who has done his darndest to destroy public schools.

If you live in Arizona, please vote for David Garcia and vote NO on Prop 305 to stop vouchers.

The Network for Public Education has endorsed David Garcia for Governor of Arizona. David‘s opponent is the present Governor, Doug Ducey. Ducey has systematically attacked public education through defunding public schools and public universities, expanding voucher programs, and pushing the proliferation of charter schools despite numerous scandals, frauds, nepotism, and charter closures.

Among the 50 states and Washington D.C, Arizona received the lowest grade on the Network for Public Education’s and the Schott Foundation’s Privatization Report Card. Arizona’s dismal score is the result of the state’s expansion of privatization, dilution of student civil rights, and the lack of transparency and accountability for charters and vouchers. Ducey is responsible, in great part, for Arizona’s shockingly low rating.

David Garcia, in contrast, has focused on educational improvement during his campaign. He is opposed to PROP 305, the referendum that would expand ESA vouchers, and he is a strong proponent of increased education funding.

Garcia has also made it clear that he stands for reform in the state’s charter school law to eliminate both fraud and profit. Although we would prefer that Garcia call for a charter moratorium, we believe the contrast between the two candidates is so stark that Garcia deserves the vote of every friend of public education in the state.

We also would like to remind our Arizona friends to Vote NO on Proposition 305 that would expand ESA vouchers and rob public schools of much needed funding.

Please vote for David Garcia for Governor and vote AGAINST Prop 305 on November 6.

We are still awaiting the miraculous results of the Common Core. ACT scores declined.

Mercedes Schneider takes a deep dive into the scores and then reviews the payday for ACT executives.

“Feeding from the testing trough is paying off quite well for ACT. According to its 2015-16 tax form, ACT garnered $340M in revenue.

“One board member serving 2 hours per week was paid $40.5K– what is for many teachers an annual salary. Board members working 3 hours per week earned between $47.5K and $61.5K. Even “former” board members are still on the payroll for between $15K and $51.8K for 3 hours a week.

“Chief measurement officer, Richard Patz, received $786K in total compensation, and the former CFO, John Whitmore, and former president, Jon Erickson, remain on the payroll at $767K and $747K, respectively.

“Testing. Test prep. And retesting:

“A sweet deal for current and former ACT officers and board members.

“For the American classroom, not so much.”

In 2016, Trump’s campaign ads appealed to (very) thinly disguised anti-Semitism. He let his friends in the Alt Right know that he was on their side.

In July 2016, he tweeted a photograph of Hillary Clinton superimposed over a Jewish Star of David, with a background of dollars.

In the closing days of the campaign, one of his ads asserted to working people that he alone would stand up to the global financiers (Jews) who were destroying their lives. This was one of the worst.

After the mayhem in Charlottesville, he said that there were “very fine people” on “both sides,” both the racists and the anti-racists.

David Duke was thrilled. So were the other leaders of the white nationalist movement. They came out of the shadows. They had a president on their side who accepted their legitimacy.

As Andrew Gillum said of his opponent Ron DeSantis, “I’m not calling Mr. DeSantis a racist,” he said. “I’m simply saying the racists believe he’s a racist.”

Mr. Gillum, running for Governor of Florida, was diplomatic.

There comes a time to say that a candidate who uses racist, anti-Semitic tropes in his campaign ads and in his statements is a racist and an anti-Semite.

This is a president who publicly admits his contempt for immigrants, people of color, women, Muslims, Mexicans, and anyone who openly disagrees with him.

He is a bigot.

This is a shameful time in American history.