I don’t know why but I find myself monitoring and questioning my voice a lot these days –too much, I think. I’m so cautious about not being pigeonholed as another “Angry Black Woman,” but I can’t worry about all of that political correctness because the truth is that there is nothing correct about what’s going on in American politics right about now. I have to speak my truth and there’s no nice way to say this, so I’m just going to say it: If you’re a racist, homophobe, xenophobe, misogynist, Islamophobe, or anti-Semite, YOU HAVE NO BUSINESS TEACHING CHILDREN!! I’m seeing and reading about so much ugliness from teachers lately — it’s crazy!
There are teachers I know of who seek to dismiss students, literally and figuratively, that are “challenging” because their “difficulties” are just “too much”. Huh? Come again? Being a kid in 2017 in and of itself is “challenging” and “difficult” and “too much.” Everything we are going through as adults, they’re going through, too — and then some. If teachers aspire to teach such students, they can not hang on to any hate they possess – outright or residual. I mean, if you’re a homophobe, is a gay student really safe in your class? If you have no love for Muslims, how does that come out in the way you relate to your students who wear hijabs? If you have a Confederate flag waving freely in the breeze from the back of your car as you pull up to teach the poor boys and girls in the hood, you need not pull up!
I feel like I’m in some sort of a Teacher Twilight Zone nightmare that needs to end NOW! Straight up, there are teachers cropping up in New York and all over the U.S. who are not fit to teach students because they don’t care about all students. Their vision is clouded with discrimination and hate, as if they fear students who are different than them or their ideologies. This inability to identify with one different from them is very dangerous to the students they teach. Teachers are children’s advocates. I would go so far as to say that teachers are social activists. If we hate the kids whom we teach, who in the world is going to love them?
Just yesterday, HuffPost Black News, reported that,
A Virginia mother said a teacher at her son’s middle school asked African-American students to pretend to be slaves during a history lesson while white children played the part of noblemen. For a skit on the Louisiana Purchase at Shelburne Middle School in Staunton last week, black students were asked to pretend to pick cotton and dig coal, Tamika Derozen’s son told her.
“He said, ‘Mom, I didn’t know what to do. I wanted to walk out of the class, but I didn’t want to get in trouble,’” Derozen told WHSV, the local ABC station.
This dude Trump has really empowered the hate-mongers to rise up and oppress people and that is what it is (and we’ll save that for another post). But when that foolishness creeps into the classroom, we have to draw the line.
Who else is identifying these kinds of teachers? Who holds them accountable? I need answers.
I need them now.