It honestly bothers me when people say they are “color blind” or they “do not see race.” Because lets face it, they are lying. Everyone sees and acknowledges race, and I am no different. The difference is whether or not you decide to act on it and make it a deciding factor in how you treat people. A vast majority of people see race, but do not let it decide how you treat a person. However, there are still some people whose actions are motivated by it.
For this reason, I believe, we have come a long way since the 1960s and MLK days, but we have not come far enough. Racism still protrudes our everyday life in some form or another- whether it is the economic situation we live in, the prison system, the health care system or any other type of institution. Racist attitudes still drive them all, and, sadly, schools are not immune to it either.
According to the NY Daily News, a sixth grade teacher in St. Paul made racist comments to five black children in his class.
Tim Olmsted, a white teacher at the Heights Community School, allegedly told the five children to sit in the back of the classroom.
According to the article,”He told the whole class that it was easier for him to teach rich white folks than poor black people,” Latasha Tolbert, whose daughter was placed in Olmsted’s class, told the TV station.
Also, he allegedly told Tolbert’s daughter that “she was likely to end up on the highway begging for money, according to the report.”
Tolbert complained to the school’s principal, who did nothing about it, so Tolbert had her child moved to another class.
Currently, Olmstead is on two-weeks paid leave; however, an attorney representing three of the families said they will file a lawsuit if Olmstead and the principal are not fired.