As I’m sitting here, listening to music and the much-awaited rain crashing against my windows, there is something really important on my mind. Sadly, blogging is the best way to get my thoughts heard, as I encounter few people IRL with whom I can discuss these things face-to-face. Better yet, there are few people I meet who want to discuss these things. This is something that is always on my mind; I use this forum as a way to clear my mind because holding these things in will not do me (or anyone else) any good. So here are the things that inspired my (internal) intellectual dialog for today:
1. I was reading through some of my friends’ FB status updates and my college roommate posted something about her HOA that was both sad and hilarious. In the covenants for the development, there was a statement that read: “None of the lots shall be conveyed, occupied, etc. to anyone other than of the Caucasian Race.” She said they drew a line though it, instead of completely deleting it. Let me clear, I thought it was funny in the sense that, in 2010, a professional agent would actually hand that document to someone, especially a Black someone, without deleting that statement. Even funnier is the fact that no one thought it was important to remove the statement, especially since we live in a ‘post-racial’ America (side eye). BTW, what exactly do they mean by ‘post-racial’ America? As long as we have brown and black skin tones that run the gamut, we will never be able to live in a world where no one ‘sees’ race. Knowing my roomie, she will definitely address that faux pas. But here’s a burning question I have: How many Black homeowners flock to developments with the word ‘plantation’ in the name? I once told a friend that I would never even look at houses in a development with that word in the name. Is this practice exclusive to Southern states? I don’t think I have ever seen the word ‘plantation’ on anything up North. Hmmm…
2. I stumbled onto the Blogging While Brown site today. I hate that I missed their annual conference (not that I would have been able to go any way), but I thought I was finally getting the hang of this whole blogging thing. Ugh! I will definitely add that event to my calendar for next year. Any way, I clicked through a bunch of the blogs listed (and followed a few on Twitter). I will admit that I was kind of disappointed by the lack of Education-related blogs. Of course I started asking myself a bunch of questions, including ‘Are there any people of color besides @FirstTeacher and @TheJLV blogging about Education? Considering the ramifications on NCLB, RttT, and whatever else the Obama administration thinks of, shouldn’t there be more people of color blogging about this issue? I understand the importance of teaching entrepreneurship, money management, etc., but those lessons are in vain if Lil Ray-Ray or Juan can’t read well enough to develop a business plan, let alone effectively execute one. Right? Or is it just me? If all the people of color who are keeping up with the Kardashians or concerned about what their favorite celebrity is wearing would invest half of that time, energy, and attention into demanding quality schools in their communities, the achievement gap would not exist. No, this issue is not exclusive to only those who have kids. If you work, pay taxes, and own a home or business, then you should be concerned by the manner in which your money is spent. You do have a voice.
The only way we can get the attention of those seeking to hold positions of leadership is by exercising our right to vote. We turned-out to vote in record numbers in 2008, but we can’t rest now. That was just the first step in returning some of the power to the people. Obama cannot fix everything; he is certainly too busy to understand what happens in Snellville, GA or Houston, TX. It’s up to us to hold elected officials accountable for their words, actions, and campaign promises. If not us, then who?
Remember: The Georgia Primary Election is July 20, 2010. This will determine the direction of our public education system. Either we stay at the bottom or we fight our way to the top; we don’t have the luxury of running a ‘race’ only to realize we have been running in circles.