Would quinoa salad (with white bread) represent white people?
by Nicole Funes
How ignorant of a Catholic girls’ school to honor Black culture by reducing us to fried chicken and watermelon on their menu?
I found it insulting that just 18 miles from West Oakland, in the diverse Bay Area, a group of suburban school girls at Carondelet in Concord decided what to do for Black History Month without looking up a single thing about Black History on the Internet. They just talked about FOOD in the cafeteria. And resorted to STEREOTYPES!!!!
And don’t they have an adviser? Are there no adults involved in menu selection, let alone education?
I think that those white people were being racist and they didn’t even know what Black History month was about. Their attitude is just too…cavalier.
For instance, if we were in their shoes and had a month to celebrate white history month (as though anyone would REDUCE white history to ONE month of the year) and we said, “Oh, to honor white people this month, we’re going to have salad, white bread, olives, and lemonade for lunch. We should put it on our lunch menu!”
And our principal wouldn’t even notice or say anything about it and, then we would go on TV and make fun of their culture like how they do, thinking we barely know their culture or what food they eat, just because it says “white” in front of “history month”, we only have to GUESS what they eat. And then we would have an assembly because peoples’ feelings got hurt, so we just had to apologize: nothing more. As though, you could just take back words that had inflicted pain.
You would justify your action by claiming ignorance: oh, we just put something to eat this day because we had an assumption that white people eat this food because we might have friends who are white and now we think we are part of the clique!
Pass the Peace: Why I Embrace Non-Violence
Shamarray Ross, incoming freshman at McClymonds, gathers peace pledges in preparation of Saturday’s event
by Jonae Scott
I have experienced violence and force first-hand in West Oakland, a community in which my roots run deep. I’ve been shot (two years ago during a peaceful vigil for an older friend who was gunned down) and in April, my parents were arrested, and then released, during the raid of the Acorn housing project.
It was traumatic to have federal agents burst into my apartment with guns, assault rifles and flash bang grenades, handcuff my parents and brother, and throw my family’s possessions around.
Because of these experiences, I need to be involved, even to lead any activity to bring peace to West Oakland. The “Pass the Peace” event this Saturday will mark the first time I take action myself. It was time.
It’s important for youth to let their voices be heard. Take Shamarray Ross, a freshman at McClymonds. She says, “It’s time for youth to make it better. Nobody else is.”
And she’s right.
We are making peace pledges at the event at McClymonds this Saturday from 12:30pm to 4:30pm. Sponsored by the Alliance Recycling, the event is called “the Spirit of West Oakland” because we want everyone in the community to join us.
Like my peers, I was distressed to read The San Francisco Chronicle story, that noted that since 2002, the number of African-American men killed on the streets of Oakland nearly matched the number who graduated from public high schools ready to attend a state university.
So distressed that I’m taking action. I demand an end to gun violence in my community.
Posted in 100 block initiative, Academic success, after school, Alumni, anxiety, changes, Children, Commentary, community, community activism, Culture Keepers, Education, Gangs, Guns, leadership, protest, Racism, resilience, restorative justice, School News, school spirit, shooting, stress, success, Trends, violence, YOLO, Youth
Tagged Alternatives in Action, Chaz Walker, Keith Carson, Lynette Gibson McElhaney, Mack. Pass the Peace, McClymonds, non-violence, Samba Funk, The Spirit of West Oakland, violence, West Oakland Alliance Foundation