As a teacher, a student asked me if she should have an abortion. Without Roe, what would I say? | Opinion

Upon hearing of, and reading, the leaked draft opinion that strikes down the Roe decision, I immediately thought back to the day, many years ago, when one of my students asked to talk. She was pregnant, unplanned. She was terrified [yes?], and asked me if I thought she should have an abortion. My student wasn’t ready to become a mom. The to-be-father was in college and shared with her he wasn’t ready. However, she also respected the gravity terminating a pregnancy. I was the first adult she told.

Opinion: Kaepernick’s Persistent Push To Be An NFL Quarterback, Including As A Backup, Raises Questions

Colin Kaepernick hasn’t played in the NFL since the 2016 season. September 2022 will mark the sixth season since he was a quarterback on a roster — that is, of course, if he’s not signed by a team. For years, Kaepernick believed he was good enough to be a starter in the NFL. That may well be true. Considering all the horrible quarterback play the last five years, Kaepernick is right. Since being exiled by team owners, Kaepernick has fought for his opportunity to start in the NFL. But now, Kaep

Opinion: How Florida Has Added To Its Racist Education By Subtracting Black People From Math

We have officially reached the point in the critical race theory backlash where they’re now banning math textbooks. The Florida Department of Education rejected 54 math textbooks — 28 of them because they “incorporate prohibited topics or unsolicited strategies, including [critical race theory]” — according to a DOE statement. Of course, Gov. Ron DeSantis endorsed this decision, claiming that the proposals from publishing companies contained lessons on “indoctrinating concepts like race essenti

Opinion: Squeezing All The Daylight Out Of A Lemon, Senate Elects More Daylight Saving Time To Exploit Workers

The U.S. Senate passed a bill on March 15 called the Sunshine Protection Act to make daylight saving time the new, permanent standard time. DST was instituted in 1918 to save energy during World War I. During World War II, President Franklin D. Roosevelt instituted “war time,” a year-round daylight-saving time, to save energy. After the year-round shift ended in 1945, many states adopted their own summertime changes. The U.S. had year-round daylight saving once again in 1973 but returned to reg

Doing Life in the Community Where You Teach

Certainly, remote learning, while not the most optimal of solutions, was necessary to protect student health and safety. But humans are social creatures. Although relationship building can happen remotely, it’s better when it’s in person in order to generate true fellowship with each other. Being back in school buildings allows educators to build relationships even more to support student learning. Teaching and leading, specifically teaching and leading well, is hard work—even more so amid a gl

Opinion: Stop-And-Frisk Is A More Righteous Cause Than Unvaccinated NBA Players

On March 15, 2022, Kyrie Irving of the Brooklyn Nets scored 60 points against the Orlando Magic, a difficult feat, yet possible for Irving who is a superstar basketball talent. It’s no wonder that the Brooklyn Nets want him back on the court full-time. Currently, Irving is playing league games on a part-time basis because he has elected to not get vaccinated. That’s his choice. However, per a New York citywide policy stating that unvaccinated employees cannot work for a city employer, put in pl

Opinion: In A Racist Social Structure, There Are No Mistaken Identities. The Ryan Coogler Arrest Was On Brand

In January of this year, acclaimed film director Ryan Coogler was mistaken for a bank robber. Bank staffers at an Atlanta Bank of American branch mistakenly thought Coogler was staging a robbery, so they called cops, and the “Black Panther” director was detained by police, in handcuffs. Coogler had handed the bank teller a handwritten note on a withdrawal slip that said: “I would like to withdraw $12,000 cash from my checking account. Please do the money count somewhere else. I’d like to be di

Opinion: The War In Ukraine Is About White Domination

Certainly, what’s happening in Ukraine is tragic. Subtract the geopolitical nature of this conflict and what you’ll find is people striving for their survival, both personally and nationally, because of a despot’s desire to return his country to its former glory. I don’t mean to sensationalize what’s happening, but that is certainly happening. I have friends living in Ukraine with their children. They provide updates on Facebook as to their whereabouts, where fighting has taken place and how th

States Have an Obligation to Educate All Students. School Privatization Lets Them off the Hook

Growing up, I was taught by my parents to do the right thing, to be responsible, and to hold myself accountable, values that were reinforced by my grade school teachers in the city of Camden, New Jersey. I often think back to those early lessons as I reflect upon the current state of public education in Camden, where policymakers have chosen to shift the burden of educating the city’s Black and Latinx students to private entities. I am sure those folks would argue the decision to expand school

Teach Black History Better by Learning from Jesus

As a kid, my friends and I believed that the designation Black History Month in February was due to a racist conspiracy because it was the shortest month of the year. Thankfully, I learned as an adult that Dr. Carter G. Woodson chose to designate Negro History Week as the week of Frederick Douglass’ and Abraham Lincoln’s birthdays because of the role these men play in the liberation journey of Black people. For Woodson, Black history was as much about the retelling of American history in a cul

Opinion: Being Black Is Good, But It’s Never Enough

I was 25 years old and excited at the possibility of having a Black president. I remember sharing with someone that I was voting for him because he was Black. When they asked why, I said that white presidents had their chance to not be perfect: let a Black president get a chance. At the time, it felt like a sophisticated answer. However, looking back, it seemed more honest than sophisticated. That’s because, over the years, I’ve learned that being Black simply isn’t good enough. To be clear, r

Opinion: Black People: Don’t Be Disillusioned … A Black Owner Won’t Pay The Dividends You Think

By suing the NFL, Brian Flores has assured himself of never head coaching in the NFL again. However, I believe that Flores is not disillusioned. He himself shared on TV interviews that he was aware of the risk involved with taking the NFL owners to task. I think it’s us, Black folk, who may be disillusioned. We’re not disillusioned about racism in the NFL and the likelihood that Flores will be exiled from the NFL as was Colin Kaepernick. We’re not disillusioned with the reality that NFL owners

How Black Teachers Avoided White Surveillance to Teach the Truth

A few weeks ago, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum gave a speech that disregarded the rich history of Indigenous people, saying that [white people] birthed a nation from nothing. It is this very thing, what W.E.B. DuBois termed the propaganda of history, which led Dr. Carter G. Woodson to create the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH). Much like Santorum, the “scholars” of Woodson’s time, some who taught him while at Harvard, believed that Black people of

Camden high school’s diverse student body deserves a school with a meaningful name | Opinion

Woodrow Wilson was an unabashed racist and white supremacist. That’s why, in 2019, I advocated that the Camden City School District change the name of Woodrow Wilson High School. I was pleased when the district, as well as journalists from this newspaper, understood my point of view. As a result, the district elected to change the name of the school. At a school board meeting last month, school district Superintendent Katrina McCombs announced the new name: Eastside High School.

Opinion: Sometimes A Half Truth Is A Whole Lie In Defund The Police Polls

Joe Biden announced his proposal to increase funding for police as opposed to defunding police departments. Biden’s fiscal year 2022 budget has an increase of more than double the FY2021 budget for law enforcement — $388 million. Some argue this is a middle finger to Black people, the constituency largely responsible for securing Biden’s election win. I tend to agree. But polling data push back on that argument, showing that Black people are against defunding the police. According to a 2021 Eco

Here Are the Men Who Risked Their Lives to Teach Dr. Carter G. Woodson

This post is part of a series of content for Black History Month reviewing the recent book by Jarvis Givens “Fugitive Pedagogy: Carter G. Woodson and the Art of Black Teaching”. Contrary to the racism-laden opinion that Black people don’t care about education, Black people actually care about education. The cultural disposition of a lack of care was placed upon Black people by whites who insisted that minorities were incapable of academic success and thus denied them the opportunity to succeed

For Black Teachers, Local Context Matters

I recently saw a tweet detailing the current racial demographics of teachers of color when comparing traditional public schools and charter schools … Currently, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), Charter schools have a higher percentage of teachers of color, notably more Black teachers, in their classrooms compared to public (and private) schools. Charter schools employ higher percentages of Black and Latinx teachers. The reason why warrants more discovery and in

Exploring the Vastness of Black History

Students can learn a lot about the Black experience in America when teachers seek out a variety of resources to supplement their curriculum. Black History Month, the brainchild of Dr. Carter G. Woodson, is an opportunity for students to continue learning about the accomplishments and contributions of Black people in U.S. and world history. I say continuing because it was Dr. Woodson’s intention that this month serve as a cumulative showcasing of the Black history that students learned throughou

Brand New World Verzuz Home

The first time I watched the Wiz, I was a teenager. I went through my entire childhood without knowing The Wiz even existed. However, I did watch the Wizard of Oz as a kid, but I never really cared for the movie. Once in college, I read about a number of theories and political interpretations of the film, but it still carries little cultural significance for me. The Wiz is different. I remember a conversation with my uncle when I was fourteen. We were talking about kids’ movies and the Wizard of Oz came up and he immediate asked me, “yeah, but have you ever seen the Wiz?” I though he meant the store Nobody Beats The Wiz. He laughed and explained that it was a “Black” spin on the Wizard of Oz. He proceeded to take a trip down memory lane while demanding that I watch it.

Hall Of Famer Takes A Stand For Privilege As Black People Continue To Die Of Covid

The combination of former Utah Jazz players John Stockton and Karl Malone is known for the pick-and-roll basketball play. Now, the pair is known for exhibiting callous and disturbing behavior. The world already knew that Karl Malone was a creep. But John Stockton? Stockton, an NBA Hall of Fame basketball player and alumnus of Gonzaga University, where he starred as the team’s point guard from 1980 to 1984, recently had his season tickets to Gonzaga basketball games suspended because he refused
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