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Tea Party Works to End School Integration

Discussion in 'Opinions, Beliefs, & Points of View' started by Bob26003, Jan 12, 2011.

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  1. Bob26003

    Bob26003 Well-Known Member

    Tea Party Works to End School Integration

    IN RALEIGH, N.C. The sprawling Wake County School District has long been a rarity. Some of its best, most diverse schools are in the poorest sections of this capital city. And its suburban schools, rather than being exclusive enclaves, include children whose parents cannot afford a house in the neighborhood.

    But over the past year, a new majority-Republican school board backed by national tea party conservatives has set the district on a strikingly different course. Pledging to “say no to the social engineers!” it has abolished the policy behind one of the nation’s most celebrated integration efforts.

    And as the board moves toward a system in which students attend neighborhood schools, some members are embracing the provocative idea that concentrating poor children, who are usually minorities, in a few schools could have merits – logic that critics are blasting as a 21st-century case for segregation.

    The situation unfolding here in some ways represents a first foray of tea party conservatives into the business of shaping a public school system, and it has made Wake County the center of a fierce debate over the principle first enshrined in the Supreme Court’s 1954 decision in Brown v. Board of Education: that diversity and quality education go hand in hand.

    The new school board has won applause from parents who blame the old policy – which sought to avoid high-poverty, racially isolated schools – for an array of problems in the district and who say that promoting diversity is no longer a proper or necessary goal for public schools.

    “This is Raleigh in 2010, not Selma, Alabama, in the 1960s – my life is integrated,” said John Tedesco, a new board member. “We need new paradigms.”

    But critics accuse the new board of pursuing an ideological agenda aimed at nothing less than sounding the official death knell of government-sponsored integration in one of the last places to promote it. Without a diversity policy in place, they say, the county will inevitably slip into the pattern that defines most districts across the country, where schools in well-off neighborhoods are decent and those in poor, usually minority neighborhoods struggle.

    The NAACP has filed a civil rights complaint arguing that 700 initial student transfers the new board approved have already increased racial segregation, violating laws that prohibit the use of federal funding for discriminatory purposes. In recent weeks, federal education officials visited the county, the first step toward a possible investigation.

    “So far, all the chatter we heard from tea partyers has not manifested in actually putting in place retrograde policies. But this is one place where they have literally attempted to turn back the clock,” said Benjamin Todd Jealous, president of the NAACP.

    School Board Chairman Ron Margiotta referred questions on the matter to the district’s attorney, who declined to comment. Tedesco, who has emerged as the most vocal among the new majority on the nine-member board, said he and his colleagues are only seeking a simpler system in which children attend the schools closest to them. If the result is a handful of high-poverty schools, he said, perhaps that will better serve the most challenged students.

    “If we had a school that was, like, 80 percent high-poverty, the public would see the challenges, the need to make it successful,” he said. “Right now, we have diluted the problem, so we can ignore it.”

    So far, the board shows few signs of shifting course. Last month, it announced that Anthony J. Tata, former chief operating officer of the D.C. schools, will replace a superintendent who resigned to protest the new board’s intentions. Tata, a retired general, names conservative commentator Glenn Beck and the Tea Party Patriots among his “likes” on his Facebook page.

    Tata did not return calls seeking comment, but he said in a recent news conference in Raleigh that he supports the direction the new board is taking, and cited the District as an example of a place where neighborhood schools are “working.”



    Why is the Tea Party against the 1964 civil rights act?
    Tea Party member Rand Paul said he's against the 1964 civil rights act that ended segregation.

    In the 1960's southern WHITE CONSERVATIVES WERE DIXIECRAT'S because the south was always run by conservatives whether it's today's Republicans or the 1960's Dixiecrat's the south has always been run by Neo-con conservatives.

    Most conservative southern VOTERS switched over to republican after Richard Nixon's Southern Strategy (and mostly because democrats voted for the civil rights act) in the 1960's.

    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 12, 2011
  2. Bob26003

    Bob26003 Well-Known Member

    Rand Paul and the Libertarian / Tea Party View of Civil Rights

    Rand Paul, who upset the establishment GOP candidate to win the Republican nomination for Senate in Kentucky, stepped in it in one of his first interviews since Tuesday. For reasons known only to him and his political handlers, he went on the Rachel Maddow show and NPR and promptly suggested in very deliberate phrases that portions of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the American with Disabilities Act should not apply to private businesses.

    Later, he attempted to retract his statement by issuing a release saying that he would not support any attempt to repeal the Civil Rights Act. His spin doctors obviously know that no one in their right mind in Congress or the voting public wants to revisit that painful chapter in our past that a debate on repeal would bring. But what was more important is what he did not say.

    Paul did not say that he wouldn't support an amendment or change to those provisions that apply to private businesses. He didn't retract or repudiate the statements he had made in numerous other local publications. Indeed, when he met with the Louisville Courier Journal, the board wrote in its editorial:

    For instance, he holds an unacceptable view of civil rights, saying that while the federal government can enforce integration of government jobs and facilities, private business people should be able to decide whether they want to serve black people, or gays, or any other minority group.

    This laissez-faire attitude towards civil rights is typical of Libertarians and their Tea Party brethren. Founded upon the notion that less government is good, and no government is better, proponents hide behind their thinly veiled contempt of our civil rights laws by stating that it is not economically viable to discriminate. In their world view, anti-discrimination laws are not necessary because discrimination is not competitive and therefore will always select towards hiring. This philosophy is either hopelessly naive or deliberately ignorant. If government should not be involved in the affairs of private business, no matter how they comport themselves with the ideal of equality, it begs the question as to whether there is any continuing utility of the Bill of Rights in their world view, much less our anti-discrimination laws. But it is entirely consistent with a viewpoint that would allow government to turn a blind eye to discrimination.

    What these luddites of liberty either don't or won't understand is that racism and discrimination is not founded upon any notions of market rationality. Racism doesn't care about profit margins or competitive edges or reasonable choices in business. The racist or discriminator only cares about marginalizing and maintaining a competitive edge of itself over other races, religions, and ethnicities. Racism doesn't think that blowing up a black church or exploiting Latino farmhands or not hiring female workers or refusing to provide an accommodation to a disabled employee has any impact on the invisible hand of the market. Economics don't come into thinking when hate and fear are the primary motives. Adam Smith didn't factor into his theories the satisfaction that bigots feel in putting someone down.

    If you encounter any of these Libertarian/Tea Party types in the political marketplace, ask them a few simple questions:

    1. Do they believe that government has any role to play in ensuring that private businesses do not discriminate against a person because of race, color, national origin, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or disability?

    2. Do they believe that private enterprise, not government, can do a better job of ensuring that discrimination does not play a role in hiring?

    3. Do they believe that the federal government should enforce civil rights laws against private businesses that discriminate in a manner that includes civil and criminal prosecution? Or do they believe that the free market will deter discrimination?

    If any of these would-be Senators, congressmen, or local town council candidates answer no, yes, no, yes to these questions or variations on the same theme, don't believe their carefully crafted statements that pretend to pay fealty to a law they don't believe in. Trust me, they're crossing their fingers behind their back.

    Michael Yaki is a Commissioner on the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

  3. Bob26003

    Bob26003 Well-Known Member

  4. Prinnctopher's Belt

    Prinnctopher's Belt Antiquities Friend SF Supporter

    Outside of post-secondary education, what integration? We are still verrrry much segregated when it comes to education. DC has had a policy similar to this since I was in elementary school -- that students automatically enroll into whichever public school that is in their neighborhood, and if you try to attend a school that is "out-of-boundary," you have to go through the run-around to get in. So this is nothing new in modern America whatsoever.

    Schools in poorer areas are infamous for lacking diversity (being predominantly Black schools, for the most part) and having the lowest academic performance. I don't think "diluting" the problem, by putting high-risk children into these quaint suburban schools far away from home, is resolving the problem. I actually agree that children shouldn't have to travel long distances to go to a decent quality school, and that their own neighborhood schools should not be neglected and forgotten, but should be improved on the most intrinsic levels so that these schools won't be left behind and the neighborhood children can get quality education where they are.

    Obviously this is being seen as a racist non-integration (omgz! no) policy, but it's actually the best way to empower impoverished communities to improve -- the states just don't want to take on the difficult task of improving them. By giving the children something to be proud of -- a quality education right where they live -- this inspires whole neighborhoods to clean up the act and these young children raised in poverty would grow up to be brilliant; less of them will end up as ignorant, violent, street hoodlums that continue the cycle of being in poverty, participating in violence, and ignorance.

    But your people don't want you to know that, though. The best way to keep generations in poverty is to teach them to forget that it exists. Then again my perspective when it comes to issues that involve Blacks in poverty and education and economy, is somewhat Black Nationalist.

    My question is: Why do [secretly racist] opponents of this policy believe that my son has to go to a white school in a suburban terrace just to get a high-quality education? Why can't we just improve the quality of the education in the neighborhood where he already lives? Exactly what are they trying to say by this, hmm?
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 13, 2011
  5. Lovecraft

    Lovecraft Well-Known Member

    Not sure what we did but Toronto simply doesn't have a problem with the 'inner city poor neighborhood' thing. We have many places where the property value suddenly decreases but there are many of those directly adjacent to the multi-million dollar homes of Rosedale or the million dollar homes of other neighborhoods and all the kids get in the same school just fine.
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