Teachers have become unfortunate scapegoats for the current budget crises in many states. The idea that teachers are somehow unfairly feeding at the public trough is easily disproved by the economic data that shows teachers struggling to maintain living standards. As E.D. Kain puts it, “it turns out teachers aren’t overpaid babysitters. More like underpaid babysitters.

But economic reality isn’t proving sufficient to quell the increasingly mendacious claims about greedy, impossible-to-fire teachers, so maybe the emotional appeals in this video can help.

Created by public school teachers themselves in defense of who they are and what they do, this video offers a simple yet powerful statement on the obvious importance of teachers in a civilized society. (Thanks to Nation reader Averie Maddox for alerting me to the video!)

After posting this to your social networks, please contact your state government and tell them to make sure teachers in their state get the respect — and fair pay — that they deserve.