The rally to support Prop 38 began at Vets Park on Monday, Oct. 8 with school board member Laura Chardiet quoting civil rights activist Fanny Lou Hammer, “I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired.” Chardiet talked about Prop 38 raising money to “plug the holes that are created in our school systems by the cuts from Sacramento.”
Prop 38 is on the ballot as a vote to “Increase taxes on earnings using sliding scale, for twelve years. Revenues go to K–12 schools and early childhood programs, and for four years to repaying state debt. Fiscal Impact: Increased state tax revenues for 12 years—roughly $10 billion annually in initial years, tending to grow over time. Funds used for schools, child care, and preschool, as well as providing savings on state debt payments.”
It wasn’t just the school board, but the Council PTA, the United Parents of Culver City, the High school’s ASB and the YMCA Youth in Government program that were all there to ask voters to support Prop 38.
The problem was that there were no voters listening.
With only the press in attendance, the short rally was more of a performance than a process, and as no one in the crowd was opposed to the ballot proposition, it was simply a matter of preaching to the choir.
Using this to his advantage, Scott McVarish of the UPCC turned the microphone around and addressed all those who were there to pose for the photo op. “What you all need to do is focus,” he exclaimed, “This is the single most important thing we can do for your kids this year is get this passed. Nothing else is as important as this is, and you need to know that, and you need to make sure everyone you know knows that. ”
UPCC is putting into action, in collaboration with the PTA, a campaign through Facebook. Asking for those wanting to support the prop to “email us at [email protected] with your email, and we will have you tell their friends, so they can tell their friends…we want this to go viral.”
Using the metaphor of bake sales, Chardiet offered that “Prop 38 is the mother of all bake sales,” and noted that if passed “this will give us the funds that our education system needs.”
Jody Reichel, the vice president of the council PTA had already spent much effort getting the proposition on the ballot. “Our schools have suffered $24 billion in cuts in the last four years. If you care about our kids, we have to pass this.”
Jody was also savvy enough to note that the Prop 30/ Prop 38 tango was not an either/or legislation. “They can’t both pass. Whichever prop has the most votes will become the law -but vote for both of them, because if we don’t get either one, our schools are facing disaster.”