Sunday, May 17, 2015

Where This is Headed

Recently, the First Lady Michelle Obama delivered a graduation rant to the graduates of Tuskeegee Institute. Where she could have lauded them for their accomplishments and encouraged them to reach for a future better than today, she instead chose to lament her status as the unpaid captive of the gilded cage of the White House. While there are those who dismiss this as meaningless, I believe it reveals the mindset of the Obama White House at large. Despite winning elections that would require not just black votes, but votes from every other demographic of our nation, the Obama White House persists in believing they are under some sort of siege because of their race.

This attitude has been suggested for years. When a Cambridge celebrity professor tried to bully his way with a Cambridge police officer in spite of not having any identification when a break in was alleged at his house, Obama immediately saw race first and said the cop "acted stupidly". Obama ignored that in any sort of breaking and entering situation, police must operate as if the unsub is inside until proven otherwise. The black professor pulling the "Don't You Know Who I Am Card" didn't help the situation. In spite of a laughable Rose Garden Beer Summit, the evidence was there that Obama always views issues through the lens of race first.

Let's consider how this has managed to endanger police and civilians. While black males make up a minority of the population at large, they are far more represented in legal actions with police. Yet, statistics also show that police are far less likely to shoot at a black suspect than a white one for fear of the type of retaliation at large supported by the DOJ and White House in places like Ferguson and Baltimore. Eric Holder-gone but not lamented- far too often went the route of seeking out cased to create a public furor designed to stampede people into a particular mindset. That kind of action blew up on him with Fast and Furious-a program which has still not been fully investigated for criminal intent. Yet it seemed to me when Obama's numbers were lagging in the polls another of these inflammatory cases would erupt. Why are we concerned about thugs (and yes, thugs can be any color despite attempts to coopt the word) getting shot during a crime and not concerned about gangbangers killing each other in Chicago and Philly and LA? Why is this president, who seems enamored with numbers, not concerned that more cops have been shot this year than in prior years?

What does this mean for society at large? What I am seeing in my very diverse middle class school is an attitude of defiance, especially from young black males. Case one-hall duty-a table of black students start throwing trash in front of our very sweet Hispanic head custodian then shouting "Me no habla" at her. I went over and asked them to stop, where one young male immediately started yelling "It wasn't me". I told him I wasn't writing him up, I was just asking him to stop. Then he comes over to me and keeps going at the debate. I'm outnumbered-not an administrator in sight. How am I supposed to counter nine kids at a table?  Case two-just this week-two young couples (both couples were black but that doesn't matter because I would have done this with ANY couple) were sitting on the floor eating lunch (there are tables...) and then they were lying all over each other with one young man grinding against his girlfriend. I asked them to stop and again, one young man (it may be the same one) gets in my face defying me to do anything. Again-I'm outnumbered-no administrator, no other teachers.

Across the board the talk of the teachers workroom is the escalation of defiance, rudeness, lack of respect for teachers and for each other. And I'm sorry, but I'm seeing far more of this with black students than any other category. I don't go out of my way to single out individuals or groups. But when one group is repeatedly acting out and disrupting classes it appears that someone has told them it's okay. So are their role models-the president, his wife, celebrities, rappers-basically giving these kids the opinion that they can do anything and get away with it? It appears so to me. I wonder if other teachers across the nation are seeing similar issues.

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