I read a news article just the other day about elementary schools kids having to draw pictures of black people being sold off into the slave trade as a result of teaching them the impact the slave trade had on the United States. The parent that called attention to her child’s homework on this subject called it “grossly insensitive,” and, “It is completely lost on me how this project could be an effective way to teach any student in any age group about American history.” The teacher responded stating the importance of guiding his students through the hard truths of America’s past.
I’ve heard this argument before that in order to move on we must continue to teach the harsh past of America, call out racism when we see it, and make this a daily fight if we ever are going to end racism. Seriously? So the answer to fighting racism is to teach our young ones about racism? What I love about young children is they are so innocent at heart. Their minds are blank canvases ready to be painted by what we decide to teach them. If we are not born racist, full of hatred, observant to the different colors of our skin, why the heck would we teach it to them? These kids love one another and be friend one another no matter what their race and you think bettering them is by teaching them division and hate? To me, this makes no logical sense.
Please don’t misunderstand me, I am not saying we shouldn’t teach history, skip over the harsh realities our fellow-men have had to endure, but the extent of how we teach it I think matters. We don’t skip over history, but why would we go as far as to assign projects to make the children understand how painful and hated one race was? How do you think it makes the black child feel in the room, or the guilt from the white child who has no idea why such hate was being done to his fellow classmate? It breaks my heart children have to be educated about hate, as an attempt to get rid of hate.
In my last blog post I write about how we make society better. While we do not ignore the past, we shouldn’t live there. I hear the argument, “we have to deal with the hardships of the past”. So we have to deal with the 1600s, 1800s, 50s and 60s in this present time? Didn’t we already deal with it? When does healing start? When does forgiveness start? When do we start looking forward and reshaping our world and society? When do we start teaching character building to change and shape society? When do we stop looking at the flaws of America and teach the flaws as individuals? Reshaping individuals, especially our young ones, is how we grow a better society. These young ones after all are our future. They are our future leaders, pastors, politicians, teachers, etc. What kind of society do we want in the next 30 years? Then teach based upon where you want to go, not where we have come from.
you can read original article here http://dennismichaellynch.com/parents-outraged-students-slave-auction-assignment/