Teachers Demonstrate Against John Stossel

The New York Sun reports that ABC "20/20" co-anchor John Stossel was confronted by protestors outside the studio who were enraged by a report he did on public schools. Organized by the United Federation of Teachers, hundreds of teachers waved signs and shouted at him to apologize for a January segment called "Stupid in America," which the teachers said called them "lazy."

"This sums up, without using obscenities, what I think of John Stossel," said a Brooklyn health teacher who held a donkey picture with Stossel's face taped to the rear end.

The kids'll love that one.

John Stossel went out, with a camera crew, to meet the protestors. One teacher invited the "20/20" anchor to come visit her classroom.

"I would love to be invited into classrooms to see for myself."

Another teacher invited him to debate the president of the United Federation of Teachers, which he accepted.

The president herself, Randi Weingarten, was in attendance.

Ms. Weingarten challenged Mr. Stossel to spend a week teaching in a city classroom.

"Teach, John, teach!" the crowd shouted. Ms. Weingarten said the show had depicted teachers as "slackers" instead of "heroes." She accused Mr. Stossel of trying to give a black eye to teachers and their union.

Ms. Weingarten later handed Mr. Stossel several large brown sacks filled with petitions signed by more than 25,000 educators denouncing the show. Asked about taking up the union on its teaching offer, Mr. Stossel said he would have to check with his network and get back to them.

"Some of my students were very hurt by that" report, one teacher told him.

"I'm very sorry about that," Stossel replied.

One can only imagine what went on in that classroom: "The bad man said mean things about me. Doesn't that make you feel sad?"

After it was over, many teachers were impressed that Stossel would come out to meet them.

"It showed good character, and I didn't think he had much of that."

Education ABC 20/20