Former Chicago Teachers Union president Karen Lewis’s bombastic way of painting the union’s class enemies as out-of-touch corporate hacks was genius political theater, and her commitment to democratic, militant unionism was unflagging. Lewis played an integral role in transforming teachers’ unionism — first in Chicago, then around the country.
Jackson Potter is staff coordinator for the Chicago Teachers Union.
The Chicago Teachers Union used strike action to lift up working-class demands that go far beyond traditional collective bargaining. From teachers elsewhere to auto workers, other unions can, too.
If we want to stop the bloodshed in places like Chicago, we need more public investment — not more authoritarian policing.