End of an era

I couldn’t begin to count how many Catholic schools have already closed in Philadelphia over the last 20 years, and now the relative few that are left are on the chopping block.

I’m not fond of the Catholic church, to say the least, and they’ve lost a lot of local support since the sex scandals. One could well argue that the church is abandoning its core mission of educating the inner cities in order to pay their legal bills, but what’s the point? They’re leaving.

I feel bad for the elementary school teachers (one of my relatives teaches in Catholic school). They don’t get paid much and they have almost no job protections (in sharp contrast to the public school teachers I know, who frequently have graduate degrees and decent salaries). I suppose the teachers thought loyalty would be protection enough, but the Church’s loyalty has always been to its own interests, and not of its members.

That’s why, no matter how many statements the Church released on the right of workers to unionize and to get a living wage, it rang so hollow. They treated the people who worked for them like peons.

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