Fear is not respect. If the above was true, why is CPS--Chicago Public Schools--always on strike every...other...year...when contract language is up for negotiation? You don't get more "crazy liberal" in Illinois than Chicago.
I once believe unions were terrible for employees and the economy.
They are. The leadership doesn't give two hoots about the local membership...only their money. The leadership will gladly throw you under the bus as long as they get their "seat at the table" of control.
And no, they don't have the option of replacing me for someone more gullible/desperate because they are forced to treat everyone well.
If this were true, then there would be no need for tenure. My first day on my first job in Illinois, the AFT union rep flat out told us, "Unless a state law has been broken by the school, until you get to your 4th year here, if the school wants to NR you, the only thing we as a union can do is help you pack."
With the union, I can truly focus on doing what is reasonable and effective knowing that I'm not going to get extra tasks or extra students dumped on me without compensation.
"Other duties to be assigned."
Yeah, that sentence was in my Illinois contract just like it is in my Texas one...and it's in yours as well if you read it...and I mean read the MASTER contract, not the piece of paper you signed and turned in to the administration (although it might be there as well).
No it isn't. What it truly is is an ongoing adversarial relationship between the teachers, and the administration where nobody really trusts the other...a real "cold war" setting.