Articles filed under Navarrette, Rueben

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  • Obama's Jekyll and Hyde routine Dec 20, 2010 10:08 AM
    President Obama can't seem to make up his mind whether he wants to work with Republicans or fight with them. One minute, he wants compromise. The next, he forces confrontation.

  • For Obama’s critics, grow up Dec 13, 2010 9:48 AM
    This is how bad things have gotten in Washington, and how broken our politics has become. President Obama is being unmercifully and unfairly pummeled by congressional Democrats, labor union leaders and liberals in the media for brokering a deal with Republicans that gave up something and got something in return.

  • How GOP could win over Latinos Dec 6, 2010 11:06 AM
    Republican elected officials could use coaching on how to talk about the immigration issue and, just as importantly, how not to talk about it. There’s a huge need. When talking about immigration, some Republicans deserve encouragement. Some deserve scoldings. And some deserve a trip to the woodshed.

  • GOP has a potential new star Nov 28, 2010 8:51 AM
    Poised to make history by becoming the first female governor of New Mexico and the first Latina to be a governor of any state, Susana Martinez will easily be one of the country’s most consequential elected officials. But, as you learn from talking with her, she is also one of the most fascinating.

  • Seeking a place to call home in politics Nov 21, 2010 2:04 PM
    Many Latinos have become disgruntled with both political parties, and I can easily see why. One ignores us while the other seems intent on driving us away. The last straw was when Democrats flunked immigration reform, then tried to fool Latinos into thinking Republicans were to blame an easy trick to pull off given how often the GOP flirts with nativism.

  • GOP would be wise to listen to Palin Nov 17, 2010 2:36 PM
    I promised myself that I’d stop defending Sarah Palin. But it’s a hard habit to break. While I found the former Alaska governor refreshing during the 2008 presidential campaign, she has been a disappointment since then. Instead of hitting the books and learning the issues, Palin ditched class, resigned her post and concentrated on making money.

  • 1940s injustice worth recounting today Nov 14, 2010 8:48 AM
    ”The whites wouldn’t like it ... “ Those are the words that were offered up, in 1949, by a funeral director in Three Rivers, Texas — a small town about 70 miles northwest of Corpus Christi — to explain one of the great injustices of the World War II era.

  • Hispanics' gains suggest GOP ‘on the right track' Nov 9, 2010 1:03 PM
    The midterm election was a watershed event for what is usually a lonely group of dissidents. These are people who belong to two distinct communities that are at odds with one another. One group worries that the dissidents are defined by their ethnicity while the other worries that they are running away from it.

  • An enforcer’s thankless task Nov 1, 2010 11:18 AM
    If you think you have a thankless job, just be thankful you’re not in John Morton’s shoes. Morton is the director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement. It is his responsibility to round up and deport as many illegal immigrants as possible.

  • Requiem for a school reformer Oct 18, 2010 11:42 AM
    It is instructive and infuriating that one of the country’s top education reformers is out of a job. America’s public schools have room for teachers who don’t believe that every child can learn and who are ready with an encyclopedia full of excuses when they don’t. They blame “the parents when kids struggle in class; and yet, when students succeed, teachers are the first ones to step forward and claim credit. And there is also plenty of room for highly paid administrators who have been conditioned to accept mediocrity from adults and children alike and who spend their time finding new and creative ways to avoid conflict with teachers and the powerful unions that represent them. Yet, there is no room for people such as Michelle A. Rhee, the 40-year-old national rock star of the education reform movement. Rhee recently stepped down from what Washington, D.C., Mayor Adrian Fenty aptly described as “the thankless job of serving as chancellor of the District of Columbia schools. You could say the writing was on the blackboard. Rhee’s departure had been anticipated since Vincent C. Gray, the D.C. council chairman, defeated Fenty in the Sept. 14 Democratic mayoral primary. Rhee had campaigned on Fenty’s behalf and publicly questioned whether Gray had the courage to make the unpopular decisions necessary to sustain improvements of the public schools. It was one of the worst kept secrets in Washington that if Gray defeated Fenty, Rhee would leave. During the time she ran the D.C. schools, Rhee made a lot of changes and a good amount of progress and more than her share of enemies. Test scores went up. But so did the blood pressure of those who like the system the way it is. Rhee became the face of the education reform movement. She landed on magazine covers, inspired countless newspaper articles, and won praise from elected officials including President Obama. She is featured in the important new documentary, “Waiting for Superman, which spells out what’s wrong with the public schools. From the point of view of the Academy Award-winning filmmaker, Davis Guggenheim who describes himself as a liberal Democrat two of the main things that are wrong are restrictive contracts worked out by teachers unions that tie the hands of administrators while protecting bad teachers, and rules that come down from a centralized office far removed from the classroom. As someone who taught in the classroom for nearly five years, and did graduate work in education but, frankly, learned more from listening to what gets said in the teachers’ lounge I have my own list of what is wrong in our public schools. The top three items are: a culture of low expectations; a resistance by teachers to accountability and criticism; and the fact that the system is centered on adults rather than children. Rhee understood this reality, and she was passionate and outspoken about changing it and creating a new one. Rather than just collect a paycheck, she helped shape the national debate over how our schools should perform. One of her major accomplishments was to get the teachers union to accept a contract giving the chancellor sweeping authority to fire low-performing educators. Rhee fired hundreds of teachers, closed more than two dozen schools and, not surprisingly, ruffled plenty of feathers. Her critics were giddy over her departure. However, Rhee’s supporters were more reserved and conflicted. She remains a divisive figure in Washington. Many parents say they support her goals, and applaud her efforts. And they certainly can’t argue with her results. They just wish she had a softer style and that she wasn’t so confrontational. That is, they like the taste of the omelet. They just don’t want to break the eggs. That’s not how education reform works or, for that matter, how life works. Don’t worry about Michelle Rhee. She’ll have plenty of job offers. Save your concern for the students. They always seem to get trampled when adults play politics with education. Now they’ve lost a brave champion who was in their corner and who wasn’t afraid to fight for their interests. Sadly, they don’t have many champions to spare. Ruben Navarrette’s e-mail address is 2010, The Washington Post Writers Group

  • The disillusioned Latino voter Oct 11, 2010 10:50 AM
    From poll taxes to literacy tests to outright voter intimidation, Americans have a long history of trying to suppress the turnout of Latino voters.

  • Immigration debate no laughing matter Jan 31, 2011 6:34 PM
    There's a great scene at the end of the film "And Justice for All" where idealistic attorney Arthur Kirkland, played by Al Pacino, uses his opening statement to tell the jury that his guilty client should go to jail. The judge bangs the gavel and calls Kirkland out of order. Fed up with a legal system that disregards truth, Kirkland shouts at the judge: "You're out of order! The whole trial is out of order!"

  • Waking up to DREAM Act realities Feb 8, 2011 10:32 AM
    Why did Congress suddenly turn out the lights on the DREAM Act?

  • A complicated relationship with Mexico Feb 8, 2011 2:31 PM
    Facebook, the enormously popular social networking site, encourages users to display their relationship status. For those who don't quite feel comfortable with "single" or "married," there is a more mysterious option: "It's complicated."

  • Waiting for the next binge in Arizona Feb 8, 2011 3:21 PM
    Arizona has spent the last several months binging on a cocktail of nativism and fear with a splash of political expediency. Now comes the hangover.

  • Obama just can't take the heat Feb 24, 2011 4:57 PM
    When it comes to serving as leader of the free world, "confident" and "resolute" always look better on your resume than "insecure" and "self-absorbed."

  • History lessons of immigration Mar 3, 2011 5:06 PM
    So the immigration debate has you confused and frustrated? Arnold Torres has it all figured out. "Those of us who have done this before can see every move two steps before it's made," he told me.

  • Heed your own advice, Dr. Laura Aug 27, 2010 9:09 AM
    So now Dr. Laura is playing the victim? Radio talk show host Laura Schlessinger built an empire and made a fortune telling folks to stop complaining, make better choices and take responsibility.

  • Politics interrupting a dream Aug 20, 2010 12:01 AM
    Most parents will do anything for their children. And when Mom and Dad are in the United States illegally, this includes volunteering to spend the rest of your lives in the shadows if it means your kid can step into the light.

  • Harry Reid and racist comments must go Aug 16, 2010 12:01 AM
    On behalf of all Hispanics, let me just say this: Muchas gracias, Harry Reid. These days, many Americans are pressed for time.

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