Because when you beat out 700 people to get to the final interview for a job and it's given to a person of color, you can't help but to wonder if that person really was the better choice. I busted my ass in a community for a year, going well above and beyond anything 99.99 per cent of teachers do, and I was pretty sure this job was mine. After all, I had experience in the ESL program at the high school and this was the feeder middle school. I taught their older brothers and sisters. I got the call yesterday that it was given to someone 'from the community'. This person 'had ties to the community'. I worked in the community and put my ass on the line for various gang members, trying to see they got an education, volunteered with the Spanish speaking population, etc. etc. but I'm not from the community and I missed out? ADLJA D:OI* !)(!) !! The lady who called me sounded rather pained, too, and said that I did 'really well, honey' and told me to keep looking. She said I had the most impressive portfolio, too. Since the community in question is 95 per cent non-white, I couldn't help but to wonder what that meant, exactly. From everything I saw at the major Open House (150 of us made it that far out of the 700 applicants), there were only a handful of non-whites (makes sense, considering our demographics and education system here) and I was the only person I knew besides two others (who didn't get callbacks) that had specifically worked in a neighborhood school. (The district is huge.) I'm not saying the guy wasn't qualified. I'm saying that when a liberal weenie like myself has a thought like that cross through her head, that's just reinforces the theory that affirmative action hurts those who deserve those jobs because people distrust their qualifications. (If you've ever seen the acceptance rate for black people at Harvard v. non black or caps on Asian enrollment, you'll see what I mean.) Allan Bloom made this point in Closing of the American Mind and I was always inclined to agree that it may be a drawback to affirmative action in the 90s (well, that's when I read it) but now I really see what he meant. Jeez. I feel guilty for my reaction and insanely curious as to WHO THIS FUCKER WAS THAT GOT HIRED OVER ME? ! I have been accused of some negative things, but never for being a bad teacher. I am thorough. And GOOD. Damned good. I have a pile of 'love letters' from the toughest students. Plus I know my material 'cause I'm a history/polisci geek. So I'm unemployed, don't have health insurance, and will have to pull my son up out of his happy world and move a couple thousand miles away to California so I can live in my dad's apartment above the garage because people don't want to hire teachers anymore. There were 7 jobs total posted in the district for social studies. Thousands of applicants. The jobs are gone. I'm not a teacher who decided to go this route because I had nothing else to do. I really do believe in public service and this is the best way I knew how to serve. Also, can I have my $40k in post-graduate loans I had to borrow back? I'm going to go slit my wrists in a warm bath while blowdrying my hair now if you don't mind.