How To Raise An Anti-Racist Kid

By Tara Parker-Pope. Chock-full of good ideas. Among them:

“Supplement your child’s education with books and documentaries, and don’t shy away from conversations about race.”

Every Martin Luther King day The Good Wife read a book about King’s life to our daughters. One on each side of her, sitting on the couch. Even though it was written on a third/fourth grade level, the readings continued into secondary school. That very small investment of time had an oversized impact on them becoming socially conscious young women.

Pressing Pause On A ‘National Conversation On Race’

Everyday brings more examples. People regularly write, speak, and/or behave in ways a majority of people would deem racially insensitive, if not outright racist. What should we do about that?

It seems like we’ve decided to make the consequences so severe that the racially insensitive have no choice but to suppress their racist tendencies. Dox them, ostracize them, fire them from their jobs.

Conservative Republicans, who not always, but often are racially insensitive, are quick to label this “cancel culture” which only adds to their persecution complex and makes them even more defensive on subjects of race.

Personally, at this time of heightened racial consciousness, I’m most interested in what militant black men and women are thinking. The more militant, the more I tune in.

Historically, there have been repeated calls by progressives of all colors for a “national conversation on race”. As a life-long educator, that strategy is my preferred one, but I’m not hearing militants make many, if any references to “conversation”.

Maybe that’s because conversation requires slowing down in order to address mutual defensiveness. Instead, activists are accelerating demands for long sought for changes which makes total sense given our collective attention deficit disorder. How long until the media spotlight shifts? In essence, strike now for legislative protections against state-sponsored violence; strike now for the removal of Confederate statues, flags, and related symbols; strike now to destroy white supremacy in whatever form.

As a pro-conversation educator, I’m out of step with the times. Which is okay. Just know I’ll be committed to the conversation long after the spotlight shifts.

 

A Public Service Announcement

For right wing reactionaries. Read. The. Room.

Chuba Hubbard starts Oklahoma State boycott after Mike Gundy pictured in OAN shirt.

“The nation’s top running back could lead a boycott against his own coach. Chuba Hubbard, Oklahoma State’s Heisman contender, is threatening to sit out of all team activities after seeing a picture posted of head coach Mike Gundy wearing a t-shirt promoting One America News Network, a right-wing station. ‘I will not stand for this’ Hubbard tweeted. ‘This is completely insensitive to everything going on in society, and it’s unacceptable. I will not be doing anything with Oklahoma State until things CHANGE.'”

If you don’t believe there’s structural racism in the (dis)United States, you may want to think through a little more carefully the t-shirts you wear, what you write, what you say, and whom you associate with. More simply, if you want to keep your job, start reading the room. Which has shifted, markedly, in short order.

As conservatives are screaming, of course Gundy has the right to wear whatever t-shirt he wants when he goes fishing.

And Jemele Hill has the right to tweet the truth:

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More specifically, his players are free to not follow his leadership. Or transfer. And recruits are free not to choose Oklahoma State.

In the end, out-of-step right wing coaches are free to field less talented teams, and to lose games, then fans, meaning money.

And in the end, university President’s are free to fire them. If the Presidents’ are not fired first for not reading the room themselves.