Saturday January 20, 2018
I was disheartened that some Daniel Boone School District parents and school directors objected to a valuable and timely opportunity for students ("Boone principal apologizes for assembly," Reading Eagle, Jan. 12). Blaming the YWCA Tri-County Area for presenting inconvenient facts in its "Stand Against Racism" program is like shooting the messenger.
Unfortunately many people deny the reality of race relations in the U.S. and ignore their own potential to help. The main criticism reported was how the material was presented. To assume young people aren't intellectually capable of consuming and evaluating complex or controversial subjects is to underestimate them.
It's a disservice to all to sweep problems under the rug by couching them in language that is palatable but imprecise.
I believe ideas causing discomfort have the greatest intellectual impact. It's not pushing political ideologies on students to point out that white privilege exists or a female may face discrimination in the workplace because of her gender. It's simply a reality, albeit an uncomfortable one.
It's regrettable that programming involving the YWCA has been suspended, given that it plays an important role in the community and has a long history of expertise in this area. I encourage reversal of that decision.
As a Daniel Boone resident and taxpayer, I sincerely hope the response to the assembly on racism won't prevent district officials from providing similar programs to students and their parents. Conversations on race and its context in history should be a required part of any school curriculum.
Students should hear anti-racism message