As February approaches educators across the country will prepare to teach their students about “Black” history.
Multitudes of copies of Martin Luther King cartoon images will be distributed to elementary school children to be colored in whatever fashion and color the child chooses in order to support their individuality.
Around the country school children will learn, with the exception of Barack Obama, “Black” leaders are brave old women, Rosa Parks, and dead men, Martin Luther King, and that Blacks in America, because of Ms. Parks and Dr. King, are now free. Ask any elementary school child, black or white who Martin Luther King is or was, and you may very well hear that he freed the slaves.
In his essay, “Fifty years since the Rochester, New York riots” Jonathan White writes, “Thanks to the efforts of such organizations, (FIGHT) Ronald Good was elected as the first black city council member in 1966, and in 1967 Ruth Scott became the first black female city council member. Rochester would go on to elect its first black mayor in 1993, Democrat William Johnson, who won 72 percent of the vote and acted as mayor of Rochester until 2005. Rochester’s current Mayor, Democrat Lovely Warren, is an African American woman, as is the current CEO of Xerox, Ursula Burns.”
Elementary school children, Black or White, will likely never hear about these local leaders. Living Black leaders will not be asked to visit classrooms and speak to these young children and engage their interest in becoming future leaders of our city, state, or country.
The institutional racism that Tim Wise and others speak of is so deeply entrenched in our current system of education that it not only supports white supremacy but enforces it on a national scale through its Federal control of the system.
When we recognize that our current system of education is harming ALL children we can begin to concentrate on changing education so that it serves the purpose for which it was intended, to create a strong, intelligent nation of individuals who take an active interest in their government.
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