Monday, November 6, 2017

Call It What It Is

I didn’t need to read about this on Patch. My teen daughter had already told me. The headline from the story by Elizabeth Janney reads:

Racist Social Media Post at Oakland Mills HS Under Investigation

 The school principal is quoted as saying the post was “racist in nature.” The article states that police, as well as the school system, is involved. That’s because the post wasn’t merely racist. It was violent. Yes, I’ve seen it. No, I’m not going to share it. And, folks, just because they say that Snapchat posts disappear doesn’t mean that they do. Screenshots are forever. Students are sharing it to call out and condemn it. I’m going to ask you to take my word for it.

Every time this happens it makes it harder for parents of students of color to trust that their children will be safe at school. Can they receive the best possible education if they are continually defending themselves from the million tiny cuts of micro aggressions or recoiling from racist, violent threats? Don’t just call this “racist in nature”. It’s a direct threat to the ability of the targeted students to receive the education they are guaranteed by law.

Saturday night my daughter and I went to see the Oakland Mills High School play, “Peter and the Starcatcher.” I remember thinking how beautifully diverse the audience was. It was another one of those moments when I was proud to live in Oakland Mills. In that auditorium were people of many different backgrounds and many different shades of color. They were all there to support the students on the stage and to enjoy live theatre.

I’m not proud today. And I don’t know how Oakland Mills could produce a young person with these kinds of views. It makes me both angry and sad. 

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