A federal lawsuit filed by a group of California public school teachers saying mandatory payment of union dues violates their right of free speech is moving forward in the courts..
In essence, in California and 25 other “closed shop” states, the teachers by law must join a union as a condition of employment and pay union dues to keep their jobs.
On the one hand, I have a hard time feeling sorry for these teachers. They knew what they were getting into when they signed up to be teachers in a "closed shop" state. If you want to teach in CA, you have to join a union. Full stop. Do not pass go. Becoming a teacher in CA and then suing because you don't want to be in the union is similar to folks that buy a house next to a train station and complain about the noise. I also can't help but wonder if they're thinking about the $1,000 a year in dues they could be keeping.
On the other hand, there is quite simply no valid reason whatsoever for a white collar gig like a teacher to be unionized. You're college-educated professionals, for crying out loud. There's no accountants union, is there? No Programmers Local No. 105. Unions generally represent tradesmen and other blue collar workers, not white collar professionals. It's a form of double-dipping, really - you want the salary that comes with the white collar job, but the safety and security of a job backed by a union.
All of this is moot, though, with the simple fact that the union requirement was in place when these people accepted the job. If they don't want to be part of the union, they are free to quit and move to a state that does not require them to be part of a union in order to work in that state. They accepted the terms of being a CA teacher when they accepted their first position - now they want to shuck the union dues but continue to reap the benefits. While I may not like unions, this is still BS. If they want the protection brought by union membership, they ought to be paying for it like the rest.
Or are they going to turn down the raises and promotions that the union fights for?
That is all.
Another dispatch from...
(image courtesy of Robb Allen)