Re: Hays Free Press request
I love this e-debate!
Thank you for your perspective and insight.
Here is a link to the article that came out today:
I can understand your initial reaction to these kids’ actions; however, it needs to be said that the great actuator of such actions is ignorance. To a large extent that ignorance is perpetuated in schools and the workplace when teachers, bureaucrats, journalists, and adults are unable to speak to the truth and discuss the issues that are important because they are often steeped in the bonds of political correctness and lack of knowledge themselves.
It’s not the least bit important how you "look to outsiders." What is important is how you learn to deal with the ignorance that is at the heart of what is going on. The adults have a great deal of learning to do before they can really begin to deal with what is happening. The flag is simply a straw dog that is used by those who know nothing of the real nature of the South.
As I mentioned, I have mailed you a copy to you of The UnCivil War – Shattering the Historical Myths. If you read it, you will begin to gain some understanding of how many of the myths were created and why they are perpetuated. Those who do not understand this war and what it was all about will never get a grasp of this nation and of the very problems you are having to deal with. HK understands.
For the school board to "examine this incident in the larger context of how the Rebel mascot and Dixie fight song may contribute to an undercurrent of racism at the school" is simply a politically correct and superficial way to deal with their own ignorance and will do nothing to provide any learning nor insights for anyone. Frankly, it is simply a shiver looking for a spine to run up.
The Tribune Papers
Mr. Owens – nice to hear from you.
As a reporter, I probably have a different set of questions. But as a mom, a community member, and a human, I cannot help but think what those two kids did to the teacher smacked of hatred.
Vandalism and destruction of property is one thing; writing the N word and other racist graffiti on the school’s only black teacher’s door goes beyond just a lack of good judgment or teenage immaturity.
And if the teacher’s version of the story has any merit, this was not the first time she experienced racially targeted activities and language at Hays High.
Regardless, it’s a divisive issue and the community seems to come down hard on one side or the other, either "it’s just school spirit and pride" or "it’s offensive and hurtful."
One of the most interesting comments I heard recently is that people who’ve lived in Hays for a long time don’t see how Confederate imagery makes us look to outsiders…like a bunch of racist haters.
Our school board is likely going to examine this incident in the larger context of how the Rebel mascot and Dixie fight song may contribute to an undercurrent of racism at the school.
I hope you and Mr. Edgerton stay tuned to what’s happening here in Hays. I’d appreciate staying in contact.