Betsy DeVos: Can You Know Her Before You Meet Her?

A shockwave was sent through the political atmosphere when President Trump announced his pick to be the new Secretary of Education. He had selected long-time Republican donor and billionaire Betsy DeVos.

 

Those on the political left began to immediately see strikes against picking this individual for this role. Aside from the fact that she is a billionaire and thus potentially out of touch with everyday people, they also claimed that since she had not attended public schools nor sent her children to them, that she should not be the one making decisions that so directly influence those schools. This was a pretty fair charge, but it was one that DeVos and her supporters brushed off.

 

Supporters of DeVos say that she has always pushed for charter schools in the United States and that she has had great success in bringing those changes about. They also say that the charter schools that she has gotten up and running have been big success stories, and that the rest of the country should want to follow her lead.

 

You can see the argument clearly from either side depending on what your biases are beforehand anyway. That is part of what makes Betsy DeVos so interesting. She does have good arguments for and against her being in her current job. At the same time, she is also somewhat of a different person in her private life as compared to her public life. She does not necessarily conform to the stereotypical ideas of what a Republican selected Cabinet member has to be at all times.

 

She has thrown a bone to those who oppose her from time to time. She agreed right away to meet with the leaders of two of the largest teacher’s unions in the country. She did this as a gesture of goodwill to show them that she wanted to work with them and not against them. One refused to meet with her, but the other took up the offer and was pleased to have had the opportunity to speak with such an interesting person in a personal way.

 

A lot of people agree that Betsy DeVos is one of those characters that you just have to meet in person before you can really understand her. They say that too many are too quick to rush to judgement. It turns out that DeVos is actually a very polite, funny, and generous person. She cares about what is going on in the lives of her staffers and other people in her world as well. She even cares about people that she will surely never meet. All of these things are part of what makes Betsy DeVos the character that she is. The old adage about not judging a book by its cover definitely applies here.

 

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