Seth Sandronsky's blog

Sacramento’s Black Mayor and the Minimum Wage

by Seth Sandronsky

If Kevin Johnson is “progressive,” then the term has become meaningless. The Sacramento mayor and charter school champion, husband of privatization zealot Michelle Rhee, has bought into the corporate argument that meaningful hikes in the minimum wage harm the economy, including the lowest paid workers. In the short term, he wants to “study” the issue to death.

All Rise: When Class Oppression Sows Democratization

by Michelle Renee Matisons and Seth Sandronsky  

A people’s movement is stirring. Ferguson sets the bar higher for Black protest, fast food employees engage in civil disobedience, home health care workers come out of the shadows, and “families in Newark, New Jersey, reject the crappy segregationist McEducation plan.”

Ras Baraka's Victory: Indicting Education Crimes

by Michelle Renee Matisons and Seth Sandronsky

Former Newark Mayor Cory Booker tried to turn the city’s public schools over to privatizers and billionaires. But, there’s a new mayor in town. Ras Baraka’s “victory is about creating the educational climate – supported by larger goals of racial/ economic justice – that is required for thriving students.”

People's Benchmarks, People's Sovereignty: New Jersey’s Occupied School Districts

by Michelle Renee Matisons and Seth Sandronsky

New Jersey pioneered the practice of abolishing democracy in education through state takeovers of mostly minority school districts. “Not only was New Jersey the first U.S. state to implement school district takeover, it has some of the longest occupied districts in the nation.”  

Basketball Mayor Hypes School Privatization, Shoots An Air Ball

by Seth Sandronsky

Charter school operators and their political servants make bogus claims of educational gains – claims that are often passed along as fact by supposedly reputable media. Sacramento mayor Kevin Johnson is a propagandist for privatization, and an ally of corporations that have a huge stake in undermining public schools. “It is vital to follow the money on issues such as public education.”

Public Charter Schools Thrive on Corruption and Economic Turmoil


by Seth Sandronsky

Republicans are often champions of private school vouchers, but Democratic politicians – including President Obama – have been central to the phenomenal expansion of public charter schools. Not coincidentally, multibillionaires have become huge patrons of charters, at the same time that massive cuts in school spending have made public schools less attractive. “Tumult plus big dollars from the wealthiest families in the country nurtures the growth of public charter schools.”

Remembrances from the Weather Underground: Reviewing Love and Struggle


by Seth Sandronsky

The Weather Underground waged armed struggle against the U.S. state and “white skin privilege” – a war that put David Gilbert in prison for life. “Gilbert’s memoir in part corrects the historical record with insights on fighting power and wealth with like-minded others for a more humane way of life for all.”

The Bloody History of ‘Race Management’ in the U.S.: An Interview with David R. Roediger

race managementThe notion that the U.S. is is anywhere near "getting over" race is foolish, ahistorical, and only useful to elites who would hide our own history from us, argues Dr. David Roediger, author of "How Race Survived U.S. History: From Settlement and Slavery to the Obama Phenomenon.


Roediger argues that you cannot be about change without owning your history, and in U.S. history race is foundational; it's so high you can't over it and so low you can't get under it.


America’s False Ideology of White Supremacy

by Seth Sandronsky White Supremacyburning-cross
Islamophobia is but another extension of white American fear and loathing for the Other. “One result has been a sort of silent consent for the torture of prisoners of the war on terror, mainly non-white Muslims.” Past obsessions with Blacks prepare racist minds well for nurturing hatreds of Muslims. “Crucially, this trend of caging and politically weakening the nation’s low-income blacks and Latinos foreshadowed the Bush II administration’s creation of Muslim ‘enemy combatants.’”

How America’s Immigrants Became White

ImmigrantsItalianStreetSceneby Seth Sandronsky

The United States has historically been, in the actual words of the original quotation, a "melting pot for all the races of Europe...."  In reality, the evolving process was aimed at transforming immigrants from various European nationalities into generic "whites" - and to keep the "unmelted" races in their place. A new book by scholar David R. Roediger explores how the American marketplace became "cutthroat" and rigidly racialized, and how "the idea of whiteness developed in the context of white supremacy for the newly arrived and their children."

White as ‘Average’ and ‘Normal’

by Seth SandronskyShooterPortrait


If being white in America is "normal" then what are the rest of us? A recent Salt Lake City shopping mall shooting spree by a young white man described as "average"-looking once again reveals the "white-as-normative" syndrome as pervasive in American life. Inevitably, it seems, whites are shocked to witness insane, homicidal behavior by people that look like them, while appearing to anticipate in advance anti-social conduct from non-whites.

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