My Letter to Senator Ellen Anderson

I wrote this letter to my senator, Ellen Anderson (DFL, District 66), about her deeply-misguided vote on capping Charter Schools:

Senator Anderson,

I’m Mitch Berg.   I’m a constituent of yours.  And while I’m not only a Republican, a talk show host (at AM1280), a conservative blogger ( and a member of Concealed Carry Reform Now, I’ll have you know that you are (but for Randy Kelly and Norm Coleman) the only DFLer I’ve voted for in the past 20 years (once, and based entirely on your constituent service record; while I agree with you on nearly nothing, you are indeed excellent at that).

However, I need to talk about your vote on capping Charter Schools.  Since you have spent so much of your political career as an advocate for children, I urge you to reconsider your very intensely misguided vote.

I pulled both of my children out of the Saint Paul Public Schools last year; with my daughter, they were merely incompetent.  With my son, I’d call the situation more akin to child abuse. 

I enrolled them both in charter schools.  Freed from the absurd, Helleresque approach of the public schools, both have blossomed – my daughter’s GPA zoomed from 1.2 to 3.4 in one semester. 

I’m like a shocking number of parents who, disgusted by the institutional inertia of the public schools (many of them immigrants and minorities, for whom good education is a pathway out of poverty) have seceded from the public schools FOR OUR CHILDREN’S EDUCATIONAL, INTELLECTUAL SURVIVAL.

I would *like* you to reconsider and renounce your vote on this subject.  Absent that fantasy, I’d like to know your rationale for this vote. 

I think I do, actually – you, like most of the DFL, are utterly beholden to the teacher’s union.  Your assistant said it might have had something to do with “oversight”, which is absurd, since nearly no public school would survive according the standards that charters must meet!

At any rate, I look forward to hearing from you and/or your staff.

Mitchell Berg
Minnehaha at Pascal. 

I’ll keep you posted.

1 thought on “My Letter to Senator Ellen Anderson

  1. One of my good friends spent her whole life believing the DFL party line (for example, she thinks the Pioneer Press is too conservative and St. Paul city property taxes are too low).

    Then she and her husband had kids. They are both professionals, very smart, live by St. Kates, sent the kids to local public schools for the first few years.

    She was in tears when she confessed they’d pulled the kids out of public school to send them to a private academy, where their experience was like yours. The kids went from discipline problems to doing outstanding work.

    I damn near bit my tongue off not saying “I told you so.” Instead, I agreed, she was a bad person. She had turned her back on one of her core beliefs – the public school system – for the mere sake of her children’s future. Now they’d probably turn out to be as smart as her and make lots of money, probably invest it in Halliburton and retire to a tax shelter in the Cayman Islands. And it was all her fault.

    That perked her right up.

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