At a protest of Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s plan to close 54 public schools last week sixties WWeatherman Underground radical Bill Ayers interviewed by conservative columnist William J. Kelly
KELLY: What do you think of Rahm Emanuel’s plan to close the schools?
AYERS: Rahm Emanuel in an absolute right-wing troglodyte. Closing the schools is the worst thing he has done. Of all the terrible dreadful stuff he has done, this is absolutely the worst. The indication that the Democrat Party is so corrupt and so incapacitated is here we are in Chicago with a Democrat mayor, a Democratic governor, and a Democratic state legislature and still all they do is close public schools, close public housing, sell off the public space, including the parking meters and the skyway to the billionaires who are their best friends. So it is a tragedy. And the school thing couldn’t be more of a tragedy. Do you want me to say more about the schools?
KELLY: Well, more about Rahm – do you think he is a one term mayor?
AYERS: Absolutely. One term and out. But, of course, those things are difficult to judge and assess because – in terms of popularity, he doesn’t have a chance. But he didn’t have a chance last time. What he did have and he still has is his billionaire friends. So he’s got Penny Pritzker, he’s got all the wealth of the North Shore. He’s got all the Hollywood money and all the DC money. So he may well buy the election as he did last time.
KELLY: Do you think Rahm’s going to run for President?
AYERS: If his record as Mayor sticks with him he doesn’t have a chance. The fact is look: in Chicago, we have Jim Crow education and Rahm Emanuel is the engineer of Jim Crow education. It’s always been a problem but the problem has only intensified. Here were are with Rahm Emanuel – Rahm Emanuel closing schools. Rahm Emanuel dictating what school reform should look like. First, he says it is for budgetary reasons. Then he says it is for the good of the kids.Tell me how you can have a school system with 175 schools with no library? Would Rahm Emanuel send his kids to a school with no library? Hundreds of schools with no arts program. Would he send his kids to a school with no arts? Now he says we are going to close this school so we can have a library in that school. That’s an absurdity. He’s been running the schools for the last several years. Why don’t we have libraries? He did that.