Today I read an article with a title,
American Schools Are STILL Racist, Government Report Finds
(link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/03/21/schools-discrimination_n_5002954.html )
When I first saw this, I had to do a double take and think to myself. Wait, do people REALLY think that Racism isn’t alive anymore? Does the Government have to do a report to really see that schools are still racist? The article mostly covers how African American students are more likely to get in trouble by their schools compared to any other race. But what got me worked up was that only issue discussed by the government report was how certain races compared to other races got in trouble.
As an Asian-American growing up in white community, I have countless times felt like I was being discriminated against. And I think that this is a fact that people like to turn away from. They act as if nothing wrong is happening because it’s not as ‘important’ or ‘as bad’ as what some race categorized students are experiencing.
I remember the first time I ever felt discriminated against was in fourth grade. I had just moved schools inside my school district for a ‘challenged class’ for honors students and I was one out of two Asian-American students in the class. The teacher, who I despise to this day, constantly looked down on me, asked me to do tasks that she never asked the Caucasian kids to do, and gave me low scores, blaming my non-existent special needs. One time, my Caucasian friend and I turned in a partner assignment in together, same answers and same everything, yet I received a D+ and she had received a A-. When my mother came to ask what I had done differently that the other student to receive a lower score, the teacher simply scoffed at my mother’s broken English and told her that it was because I had special emotional needs that she could not take care of.. THAT DIDN’T EVEN MAKE SENSE. Best to say, I left her class that same quarter and switched to a better environment in a different school. Fourth grade. But it gets better, the second large incident that occurred to me was during my Junior High years. By this point in my life, I had moved and was in a new school district. The new town was great, I made amazing friends, but the teachers seemed to hate the fact that I wasn’t Asian enough. Eight grade, when I was lacking in math, my geometry teacher constantly berated me, asking me I wasn’t “Asian enough to do well in Math” because I was always in his after school help sessions. Ninth grade, when this new substitute automatically assumed that I couldn’t speak english because I didn’t have an ‘American’ name, or when he would constantly ignore my questioning hand. And lastly Senior Year of High school. By this point in life, I had gained enough respect from fellow students to be elected the Senior Class President and I did a pretty damn good job doing this. Yet my leadership adviser seemed to think otherwise. Some background information here would be that both the ASB president and I were Asian. Whenever we were to do tasks as presidents, our leadership adviser would find a way to never let us know and rather hand the task onto a White classmate. At first we were like, “oh, it must have been some mistake” but nope. As the year went on it got worse, whenever there was a big event and the presidents had to take on leadership, the teacher would find a way to give authority to another classmate and then act as if it was a mistake. Later on we found out that we weren’t given the tasks because we were “Asian and might not know how to do things correctly”. ABSOLUTE BULLSHIT.
In all, after that long rant, I am trying to say that… YES RACISM STILL EXISTS. We can’t be oblivious to it. Even without a GOVERNMENT REPORT, America should know that its still here. Just because nobody says anything about doesn’t mean that it’s not there.