Yeah, obviously I realize that February is over, but since some of us are conflicted as to the relevance of Black History Month. I figured I’d take a moment to share this story hot off the press:
LOS ANGELES – Three Los Angeles elementary school teachers accused of giving children portraits of O.J. Simpson, Dennis Rodman and RuPaul to carry in a Black History Month parade have been removed from their classrooms, a school district spokeswoman said Wednesday.
Children from other classes at the school displayed photos of more appropriate black role models, such as Nelson Mandela, Harriet Tubman and President Barack Obama, Los Angeles Unified School District spokeswoman Gayle Pollard-Terry said.
The incident occurred Friday at Wadsworth Avenue Elementary School in South Los Angeles, where the student body is more than 90 percent Latino.(Source)And the f*ckery continues! Matter of fact, I’m going to go ahead and nominate myself for Special F*ckery Correspondent to this blog because I can’t win for losing! Rippa, if that’s alright with you of course! So this is what Black History Month is reduced to? Orenthal James Simpson, Dennis Rodman, and RuPaul? A Negro who is in prison, a Negro who is in drug rehab on a VH1 reality show, and a male Negro cross-dresser?? Well dammit if I said you could slap me right across the face. You white folks out in California sure have been having a lot of fun at the expense of black people and Black History Month lately. Yep, y’all shole’is funny. Lemme guess, next year they’re gonna give the kids a pictures of the D.C. Sniper, Gary Coleman, and Flava Flav, right?
Now of course, some parents weren’t offended. Some think that O.J. Simpson and Dennis Rodman are still good “black heroes” because at one point they had their shit together. Let’s just give them a pass, right? Wrong. Black kids–nay, the world, is constantly bombarded with negative images of black folks on a regular basis. Some would argue that we are the truest fine purveyors of our own black bullshit. But there are quite a few of us who would rather drink cyanide before letting our kids see O.J. Simpson as a role model. Yet, we continue to let a small, miseducated contingent speak for us again and again *ahem, Al Sharpton, ahem*
Now, I personally don’t take issue with RuPaul being in there because RuPaul is nothing short of fierce and is an entrepreneur in his/her own right; but a black history month honoree? Naturally, I would prefer Sojourner Truth or even Desiree Rogers over RuPaul, simply because anyone in today’s entertainment industry can be slightly suspect regardless of race or sexual orientation. With that said, RuPaul has never killed anyone or been featured on Celebrity Rehab. Point of the matter is, there are far too many black folks doing well, and making things happen for O.J. Simpson or Rodman to be featured on any list of “black heroes.”
Do you see white folks lauding Charles Manson or Jeffrey Dahmer? I don’t see them topping any lists except for the list of “Sick Bastards Whose Mommas Should’ve Swallowed.” #JustSayin
These teachers knew full and well, especially being white and male, that Rodman and Simpson are seen pretty much as pariahs (although I do believe Rodman is mostly misunderstood and fighting his own demons publicly, unfortunately). Why would they expect the few black children in that school, and the 90% Latino student body to look up these men? My thought is that they believe, as far too many do, that we as black people love to support dastardly characters; we give people too many passes. Does that excuse their behavior? The hell it does. As academics, they should know better. However, I’m sure they could give a shit less considering they probably believe their constituents are headed to a life of crime and drugs; a human and social wasteland.
I guess I shouldn’t complain though. At least it wasn’t R. Kelly, right? I won’t speak too soon, though. I’m sure it’s only a matter of time. And for the parents who support this shit? Get your (mental and intellectual) weight up. If you think Rodman and Simpson are role models, then you’re probably not doing such a hot job of being a positive influence on your child anyway. I dunno, but I after reading that story, I find the following video oh so appropriate: