Susan J. Demas: Michigan's New Motto: Blame It on the Teachers

Unless you are saving lives on the operating table or vaccinating children in Africa, it takes a certain kind of chutzpah to constantly insult and berate teachers.

Because chances are, your job is nowhere near as important as that of the folks responsible for shaping the young minds of tomorrow. That goes for lawmakers, lobbyists and yes, annoying reporters like myself.

Anyone who has to corral a bunch of sugar-addled kindergartners or try to break through to angry teenagers deserves hazard pay. Because if our kids don't get the education they need in their early years, they are screwed. That didn't used to be the case, when the auto industry was fat and happy and doled out jobs as high school graduation gifts.

But nowadays, if kids don't earn a college degree, they are almost completely shut out of the middle class. Maybe an associate's degree in a technical field will suffice. But that's about it.

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