News On Core Aspects For Vocation


Medill cherubs class of 1960 with the Charlotte N.C. contingent sitting on the left. I’m squinting in the fourth row, and on the right of the second row is another Berkeleyan, the late Marilyn Landau. All the specialists who worked on my kitchen are white, including my handyman, who is a semi-retired general contractor. I called him the other night to get his take on the first debate. aTrump is really dumbing us down,a he said. The painter is a Mexican who left his gringo boss to start his own company, the same as the concrete contractor. official source sheer coincidence, I had met the latteras ex- boss, who gave me a sky-high bid that I declined before I met his former employee. The painter told me last week that his father and brother were killed back home for money; heas happy to work here and support his family. He says in America, if you donat make money, youare lazy. These are the workers that Trump wants to send back or keep out. Meanwhile, native born, unemployed young black men, are shooting each other on the streets while the building trades hunger for skilled labor. If homeowners have to wait six months to get a roof, there must be a shortage of roofers. When I was in business, my African-American accountant told me about the crab mentality , a folksy explanation of how envy destroys initiative, like crabs pulling down those that attempt to crawl out of a bucket. The moral of the analogy was vividly expressed at the City Council Tuesday night (Sept 27), when a South Berkeley community elder came to the microphone and mourned the death of a young black man who had been shot because he got a job. The Council had been listening to a report on Vision 20/20 , a school and community program that supposedly addresses racial inequities but emphasizes readiness for college, not the trades, which prompted Susan Wengraf to wonder about the fate of the 11% who drop out of BHS and whether vocational education was offered. aWhen I went to high school, a long, long time ago,a she said, you could learn how to fix a car, do electrical wiring, and work with wood. aNot everybody is interested in academic achievement.a Wengrafas comments prompted me to search the Vision 20/20 report and indeed the words vocation and trade yielded 0 results, labor only appeared as part of the word collaboration, the word manual only referred to text, job got 6 hits, but career came up 64 times. Methinks I smell a middleclass bias. Not everybody needs to go to college, but all young people should be able to discover and exploit their innate talents, and for many that means learning how to master tools and machines other than the gun. High schools and community colleges should step-up vocational training leading to jobs in the trades.

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