Sunday, June 22, 2008

3 in 10 Americans Admit to Race Bias

I just read this on the Washington Post site, that 3 in 10 Americans Admit to Race Bias.

It reminded me of my first day in Civil Rights class in college. A room full of mainly white students in a class taught by James Farmer , who was a founder of CORE, and one of the major leaders in the Civil Rights movement. When the march on Washington occurred, he was in a jail in Alabama from the Freedom Rides. In 1990, the year of this class, he was blind partially from diabetes, partially from years of tear gas. (note: he's one of the main characters in "The Great Debaters") The bell rings, class gets quiet, and the first thing he says to us is "We are all racists." You could hear a pin drop, faces turning side to side trying to figure out how to react. The next thing he says is "I am no exception." At this point I had no idea what to think. Throughout the course, in learning about his experiences with the Civil Rights movement, he wanted us to keep an open dialog about race and stereotypes. He wanted us to realize that we have prejudices, and while that's not ideal, it's better to discuss it and try to understand.

After teaching for a few years in DCPS, and hearing things that students and teachers say regarding race, I find it amazing that only 3 in 10 Americans will admit to racial prejudices.

1 comment:

Eric said...

Comment Test 1