There are a lot of things limiting this status.
For one, the education of society as a whole, not just the youth, is at a horrible level. The war on Iraq is a shining example. As a nation, we stood by as our president led us into a war against terrorism, even though the 9/11 terrorists were from Afghanistan and not Iraq. It's a crude example, I realize, but it illustrates a point. America society is so indoctrinated and propagandized that it refuses to be educated. Anything resembling an explanation is taken as fact.
While this lack of education is a societal flaw, with system causes, it is often blamed on educators. As educators we are the valiant-few fighting against the ignorances of society-at-large. Instead, we are seen as the causers of the ignorance.
Secondly, keep in mind that as a progressive educator who actually worries about the symbolic roll of a pedagogue, you are a rarity. A lot of the teachers in or society aren't teaching for the sake of education. I once had a response sent to me on this forum that said, "remember who signs your paycheck". It made me sick in side to hear someone sell themselves out like that, especially when it's the children who are ultimately losing. While I would like to give credit to ALL educators, my academic study is all too recent in my past. I remember how many of the teachers were, and how easy it was to tell a real educator from just an entry on payroll.
Don't give up your fight, spread your disease. This internal struggle of yours to set the record straight and to fight for proper education is often seen as a sickness. You are a freak in the eyes of some. Well, we can only hope that it is extremely contageous.