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September 19, 2007


Willamette Week also has a report in their print edition. Check it out online here:

I shudder when I hear the term "reverse racism," since it's usually used by white people when they feel slighted by things like affirmative action.

In the case of Cynthia Harris and her handlers at PPS, I think we can just call it plain old racism. I don't care what color somebody's skin is, if they say "Black kids are different," that's racism.

The disgusting subtext here is that PPS has all along tried to pander to some bizarre concept of what they think of as the "black community," as if it were some monolithic entity represented by Tony Hopson and his vision of black entrepreneurship.

It's patronizing, disrespectful, and yes, racist to suggest that black kids need things white kids don't need, like uniforms, gender segregation and closed campuses.

As I said on my blog, students of all races would be better served by full funding of educational programs and reintegration.

I have a post about this topic up on my blog, as well.

Forgot the link, sorry --

It ain't the first time and it is reverse racism....As it was at John Ball when a white teacher with wonderful credentials (two years ago)... was driven out of there because she didn't "understand" the black culture...(according to the principal there.) Racism is alive and well...Sad but true...When confronted with it, people choose to just move on in most instances, I guess. It's ugly, and who wants to deal with that?

I thought twice about using the term "reverse racism", but when it comes right down to it, that's what it is, isn't it? If I lived in say, Nigeria, it would be a different story.

I just call it racism.

"Racism", "reverse racism", or anything else, is not the real point. That's just what we choose to call it.

The real point is that parents have a right to be involved in their child's education. That involvement should not be limited based on anything, race included.

I do not know much about Jefferson's lunch policy right now, but if it cannot be defended except by saying, essentially "stay out of it", there may be a problem.

Even if Harris does not agree with Lynn's position, Lynn still deserves respect and an explanation, not an insult. As a concerned parent, that is the least she should receive.

I'm Lisa Richardson, and I am running for the open seat in Zone 6 on the PPS Board of Education, in May 2009. Please visit me at and share with me your concerns for the upcoming election.



I appreciate the fact that you have such a clear eyed view of this. It is racist, certainly. Whether we call it reverse racism or racism matters little, that is just semantic.

I've always figured "reverse racism" was when a public policy intended to deal with some "majority race" advantage resulted in discrimination against the majority.

In this case, Harris's statement is simply racist. But it matters little whether we call it reverse racism or just plain old racism. It is wrong. I appreciate it being pointed out.

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