Toxic asset is a popular term for certain financial assets whose value has fallen significantly and for which there is no longer a functioning market, so that such assets cannot be sold at a price satisfactory to the holder. The term became common during the Late-2000s financial crisis, in which they continue to play a major role.
In August, I met with a fellow public-school-privatization critic and was told that in a meeting with a charter school employee, my [actual] name was mentioned and I was labelled as somewhat dangerous-scandalous and a person no one should ever talk to, listen to, or read. I wish I could say it was a surprise but it wasn’t. Since 2006, once or twice a year, someone associated with TfA, KIPP, or other entities in the school privatization movement has dropped by to post an insult, a you-are-so-wrong or unfair! comment. None of them have stopped me, and none of them have disputed facts presented. The complaints are about my unfairness, my “tone,” my “blindness” to the “successes.” Basically, I’m not on their team and that’s unfair and shortsighted and “ignorant.” Three sentences lead from that to you-just-don’t-care-if-black-children-learn because black children, being a monolith, only learn one way and need one kind of schooling that is categorically different than what happens in schools that are not predominately black or brown. [Some kids get critical thinking and field trips while others get test prep, test prep, and more test prep.]
I’ve been semi-out for years and knew that when I accepted the Ashley, I’d never get a job in this town again. And that has proven true. There are hundreds of ways to hide employment bias and ignore applications and nitpick to find an excuse that looks legitimate. But I am in the same position educated black folks of my generation, and before, were and are in—your success can/has to be found outside NO. Your best bet to get interviewed or hired is to have an out-of-state address. When you actually get local advice or feedback, one of the first things you’re told is that you really should look at jobs elsewhere, like nationally, because NO’s job market is tight, tight, tight, no matter what is seen, heard, said, implied or done after the advice.
I am a bitch and a “toxic” “asset.”
And I could care less. I spent most of my life worrying about what other people wanted and needed and felt about what I did/didn’t do/say/ask/read/eat/gave/needed/etc. and it got me exactly nofuckingwhere. So to hell with it. Toxic asset I will be, without shame, without apology, without a look back at the bridge burning. I have nothing to lose because NO has given* me nothing these 13 years to lose.
Deal made, sealed, complete.