March 4, 2011

teaching the world.


I try to keep in touch with what is going on in the United States, (why I am not sure, mostly I just love Colbert and Jon Stewert, which besides BBC.com is where I get my news) and there has been a lot of talk recently about these protests in Wisconsin over the teaching unions. Jon is always good for a laugh but this segment made me think about my position as a English teacher abroad, with little experience getting paid fairly well, as far as a traveling teacher salary goes. While in reality I do get paid well under the poverty level, somehow I manage to live a very comfortable life in Seoul (this month is a bit tight but only because I spent to much shopping in Myeongdong and am traveling to Southern Korea next weekend) and am very happy with my life and job. It is hard to think about going back to the United States most days because I know I will not be able to find a job like I have here (and lord knows I cannot serve again!) It really is a shame all these people talking down on teachers, saying they only have 9 months of work but get paid SO much; most teachers I know have to find a second job during the summer to make ends meet anyway. It is even more of a shame that people value CEO's, Wall street Bankers, movie-stars and professional football players more than the people dedicating their lives to teaching their children. It is NOT an easy job and not everyone could do it. Hell, I'm not sure if I can do it, I'm not even a real teacher yet I have 30 eager eyes on me for 22 hours a week. This fight has really made me appreciate my position in Korea and makes me want to be better at what I do.

Are teachers underpaid, heck yes! They don't get the credit they deserve in America, but those amazing teachers out there are obviously not in it for the money. Life is about more than money, which some people don't understand, a sad reality. I know I will never be rich, it is not something I really even want, too many stresses come with money. I just want to be happy, be an example to others and live a long, healthy life with people I love surrounding me; though that seems like a lot to ask for. You bet I am going to fight for it, just like those people in the dairy land are, nothing more than they deserve. I love a picket line just as much as the next guy and the civil uprisings around the world are proof that the world is not as doomed as I may think. People can motivate themselves and make a change when one is needed. Hopefully this can be the inspiration our generation and the next need to change the course of our history from it's sadistic ways.


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