This is a message I received from a school, which I won’t name:
“Following our listening forums with Black alumni and families and similar sessions with other alumni and families of color, we continue our series…Forums for White Students, Families, and Alumni.” The horrific police shooting on Sunday of Jacob Blake makes clear that these forums and the work of our Task Force on Racism, Understanding, and Belonging are all the more imperative. We aim to gather perspectives, experiences, and other valuable information from the parents and families of current white students. We will be hosting another for white alumni on Thursday, September 10. “
I got the above Instagram message from the private high School where my three sons and five of my grandchildren earned their degrees. This is also concerning to me because my husband, his brother, and father, also attended that School. In other words, it was a place dear to my heart.
So I answered that message truthfully and frankly with my personal opinion. Because it was an Instagram message, I was able to answer it immediately. The answer caused some consternation and some praise. Later the School took the comments down. They had become too emotional and inflammatory.
There is no such thing as an open discussion, only black or white diversity training, or monitors watching to make sure no one is politically incorrect. Guilty until proven otherwise. We are ALL racist to the powers that be who are trying to appease black students. The School has become unrecognizable.
My own former School just sent me the same sort of message about diversity training and trying to BECOME an anti-racist school. REALLY? They used that term four or five times in the email. They are a lost cause because they cannot get away from race after all these years of successful integration. They appear obsessed by this as if it were new.
Some well-connected parent arranged for Tucker Carlson to speak at the School. Sadly, the faculty said they could not find a time slot for him to speak. But they had Jesse Jackon Jr. and found a spot for him. The student body would have LOVED hearing Tucker Carlson. But I suppose the faculty did not want to hear him.
If they cannot see this reverse racism, there is no hope for them.
When my husband first went to high school in the fifties, integration was top news. I can’t remember exactly when it integrated. Was there a black student or two when he graduated in 1959? There were none at my School when I graduated in 1960. But soon after that both schools had their token blacks. It may have been hard for those first students. There was no diversity training in those days. And a LOT more resistance to integration than now. That was nearly 60 years ago. More than half a century has passed in which to get it right.
My three sons all went to this private boys boarding school. There were plenty of black students, and some became good friends. The big shocking news was that for my youngest son’s senior year, the School took in the first FEMALES!!! That set the School on its ear!!!
Everything is integrated now. No one needs to feel awkward about being a different race from someone else. And schools like the one I went to and the one my family went to have led the way.
My 17 grandchildren do not see race in a way that people did in the fifties. All their lives watching TV, including ads, and the movies, showed black people as heroes and stars of shows. They were an integral part of everything they saw and did. Any place you go, schools, churches, and shopping malls have been open to everyone for over half a century. The crowds have become so diverse that when I am walking in the shopping centers in Charlottesville,VA. it looks as if it were NYC or Hong Kong. So what exactly is it that these schools are trying to do?
They cannot make different races equal because they are different in ways that are too hard to describe. That sort of diversity is to be desired. Equality is impossible and undesirable. It is the differences that make life rich and exciting.
People are like that. No two are alike. The IMPORTANT thing is to be offered an equal opportunity. Equal outcomes are not guaranteed or even encouraged. What feels like success to one person is absolutely not to another.
Dividing up into white groups and black groups to try to solve racism is the silliest thing I have ever heard of. The term anti-racist was used multiple times in that letter from my school. That is shameful. They are NOT a racist institution. So why are they suddenly concerned with what the students are complaining about?
There is only one way to end racism and that is to stop talking about it as a problem. Just do the right thing and there won’t be any racism.
However, sometimes things will not be equal. There will be some girls or boys who are more likable than others. That is life.
First of all, everyone must remember that all teenagers are in a constant state of angst. All during their entire at high School years, they will be dissatisfied with one thing or another, and passionately so. It is hard to believe that these schools are falling for all the “woe is me” and “no one understands me”, rhetoric. These students are privileged. They are not victims. Why are they not being taught about life? Do they know about being grateful for their luck in being students at these exalted institutions? Does anyone point out that they should be grateful?
Things will not always work out. Life is not fair. Part of growing up is discovering this fact and learning to deal with it.
Stop treating these kids as victims.
First, they treated the black kids as victims for being the first to integrate and for being black. And now you have turned the white kids into victims too, by accusing them of living with their “white privilege” and not giving others a break. According to activists, every one of them and their families is racist no matter what!
Academics seem to want to outdo each other from one institution to another in their rush to prove how “Anti-racist” they are. But in doing so, they are making the situation worse.
I hope they get things sorted out. I am disturbed by what has happened to these fine schools. Today there is a new separation between races that seems to have been getting more and more heated over the last dozen years.
If I had school-age children, I would be considering homeschooling.
Copyright©. 2020 Bonnie B. Matheson