Luna Cruz, 9, pushed through the crowd at the teachers union rally in front of her school, Grand View Boulevard Elementary. A teacher had asked if she would speak in front of the gathering — a protest of President Donald Trump on the eve of his inauguration.
The crowd had swelled beyond the “dozens” the union had expected. Hundreds turned out to hear speaker after speaker denounce what they termed Trump’s anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant rhetoric — and also to criticize the president for his nomination of private school voucher and charter school advocate Betsy DeVos for U.S. Secretary of Education. (A Senate committee voted Tuesday morning to send her nomination to the full chamber.)
In front of the large crowd, Luna, a fourth grader, couldn’t gather the nerve to speak. But later, after the crowds around her west Los Angeles school had begun to disperse, she said this was what she wanted to tell the president:
“It’s not fair that you’re doing this,” she said. “You shouldn’t be doing this. You need to stop.”
Stop what? “Trying to turn public schools into charters.”