Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Monday, August 19, 2013

UFT Sends Out Deceptive Bill Thompson Mailer

Daily Politics reports that the UFT has sent out a Bill Thompson mailer using the tragic deaths of Trayvon Martin, Amadou Diallo, Ramarley Graham and Patrick Dorismond to sell voters on Thompson's candidacy:

“We know the Trayvon tragedy here in New York. We’ve lived it, over and over again, from Amadou Diallo to Patrick Dorismond to Ramarley Graham,” reads the piece from United for the Future, a political spending arm of the United Federation of Teachers, which backs Thompson.

"Each time we hear of another innocent young black man killed, with our hearts torn open we hand our heads and pray, "Please Lord, not again, not again," says the reverse of the lit.

"Bill Thompson knows that keeping communities safe from crime doesn't have to come at the expense of feeling unsafe around the police," the mailer continues, in text set next to an image of a black child sitting on a soccer ball and staring down at the pavement.

The flier, a copy of which was obtained by the Daily News, appears to reflect a doubling down on Thompson’s new hard-line stance against stop and frisk, which he has explicitly connected to Martin's shooting in the past.

After the acquittal of Martin's shooter, George Zimmerman, Thompson had said, “Here in New York, we have institutionalized Mr. Zimmerman's suspicion with a policy that all but requires our police officers to treat young black and Latino men with suspicion.”

An excerpt of that quote, part of a talk Thompson -- the only African-American candidate in the Democratic mayoral primary -- gave at Abundant Life Church in Brooklyn, appears on the front of the mailer.

Gee, that mailer makes Bill Thompson seem like a real staunch defender of people of color, especially against stop-and-frisk.

Ah, but Bill Thompson used to be for Bloomberg's stop-and-frisk policy before he was against it.

But Thompson's words on the subject were not always so harsh, with his moderate stance on the tactic garnering him criticism from some black officials. As recently as late July, Thompson was still defending stop and frisk as a misused but potentially “useful police tool."

In one of his most passionate moments of the earlier part of the race, Thompson flared up at Democratic primary rival John Liu during a discussion of the tactic at a March candidate forum in Queens.

The ex-controller sharply chastised his successor after Liu urged Thompson to join him in calling for an outright ban on stop and frisk, with Thompson saying he was the one who had to worry about the cops targeting his child based on the color of his skin.

When asked why the UFT was sending out a deceptive mailer making Thompson sound like a staunch long-time opponent to stop-and-frisk, the UFT issued a no comment:

A UFT representative responded to questions about the mailer with an email saying "we have taken a decision not to comment on our IE activities during this election cycle."

Does it bother me that the UFT leadership has decided to use my union dues to send out deceptive mailers making Bill Thompson sound like somebody he isn't?

You bet.

Thompson was a supporter of stop-and-frisk up until the Thompson campaign realized they were losing black voters over the issue.

That's when they made a political calculation to have Thompson go to a black congregation and speak out against stop-and-frisk.

The reality is, had Thompson's support in the black community not been lagging, he'd STILL be supporting the policy and calling it a “useful police tool."

Just another example of how Bill Thompson has no core political beliefs and ideals other than political expediency and his own career advancement.

Kinda like the UFT leadership.


  1. This is sickening. The UFT should be fighting for teachers rights, getting us a fair contract WITH RETROACTIVE PAY, and standing up against the ed-deform movement. Racial politics have no place in a friggin' teachers union. In fact, the UFT should be saving the money used for political ads to hire the massive number of labor lawyers it will need once the new evaluation system is in place this year.

    1. The UFT leadership seems willing to use whatever issues they have to do to get their guy elected.

      Frankly I would have no problem were that were they being honest with those issues.

      But they are not being honest with these mailers.

      Just as they fudge the facts over so many education issues when they're selling something to the membership, they're fudging the facts here with this Thompson mailer.

      For a long time, Thompson supported stop-and-frisk.

      It's true, he's against the policy now, but that's a recent development.

      It's a shame the UFT leadership isn't comfortable sending out ads that depict Bill Thompson as the candidate he REALLY is, rather than the candidate he's decided to become after some political calculation to restructure the campaign based on polling.

  2. Great turnout...this is exactly what is needed....!

  3. About the idea of UFT lawyers to save besieged teachers in the new evaluation system, unfortunately, you can forget the lawyers. The UFT will quietly let those people stuck with negative evaluations just sink. The appeal process in the King-imposed package that Mulgrew trumpets has very weak appeal provisions.

  4. Thompson's closing statement in the 8/21 debate cited the 8/7 released test scores as representing how the schools are doing.

    Shame! Those scores were based on the sham of the Common Core.

    And this is the candidate that the UFT wants us to vote for? Read up on who Thompson really is.