U.S. Senator Tom Cotton (R-AR) is under fire after attacking Randi Weingarten, the president of the nation’s second-largest teachers’ union, claiming she is not a mother and therefore should not have anything to do with children.
Throwing support to Republican Glenn Youngkin, the GOP nominee for governor of Virginia, Fox News’ Bill Hemmer attacked Randi “Weingartener,” mispronouncing the veteran labor leader’s name.
Calling Weingarten a “target,” Hemmer told Cotton that Democratic Virginia gubernatorial nominee Terry McAuliffe had the American Federation of Teachers’ president on stage on Monday.
“What’s that tell you?” Hemmer asked.
After slamming McAuliffe, Cotton went on to attack Weingarten.
“Randi Weingarten is a joke,” Cotton told the Fox News host.
“Randi Weingarten does not even have children of her own. What the hell does she know about raising and teaching kids?” Cotton asked, falsely claiming she “shut down schools for two years” because of COVID. Cotton also appeared to suggest having children in the home was too difficult.
Weingarten did not hesitate to blast the Arkansas Republican.
“Wait…Did I misread this or did Tom Cotton just say any teacher who is not also a parent shouldn’t be able to teach?” she tweeted. “Really? Is he now disqualifying every nun from teaching? Or is this simply a new divisive & hateful homophobic slur against LGBTQ teachers?”
The 63-year old Democrat who is a lawyer, a former teacher, a lesbian, and married wasn’t finished.
“I guess Sen Cotton hasn’t done his homework and doesn’t know I have step-children, grandkids & nieces and nephews. They would certainly be surprised by his comments. As would the many students I taught ( and loved) at Clara Barton High School in Brooklyn,” she added.
“Millions of people who raise and teach and care for America’s children are not parents. Parents everywhere rely on their expertise. Parents everywhere rely on the profound commitment we all must have to other people’s children, their health, well-being, and potential,” Weingarten, proving her educator bona fides, continued schooling Cotton.
“We owe them- teachers who are parents, and teachers who are not parents- our thanks, not insults,” Weingarten added. “Parents and educators are partners, and must work together to help our kids thrive… stop the dog whistles Tom and help us help our kids recover.”
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