Discrimination is discrimination

Letter to the editor

Posted: Sunday, April 18, 2004

The Day of Silence/Discrimination is coming.

I must applaud our school administrators for practicing exactly what they are trying to get rid of, discrimination. They have disregarded the other important members of our community that suffer the same discrimination as the gay and lesbian community.

Why does our school system continue to do little to educate our student population on the great things that our culturally diverse community has to offer and has offered over the many years? I will give partial credit to the school for bringing in Rev. Michael Oleska from Anchorage to help educate on racism. By the reports I received, it was an outstanding presentation that captivated the audience of mostly sophomores.

This is what our students need to hear, real life experiences. They need to have information presented to them that is thought-provoking where they can make decisions on their own. The adults and children in our society are eagerly looking for good leadership that they can mirror in their own lives.

I would encourage our school system to educate all levels of the junior high and high school. The costs would be great and timely for our educators, but the community in this generation and the next will benefit from the experience. This is a great opportunity to embrace change and educate, if this is possible; our administrators need to set the example.

It's kind of ironic the teachers are enlisting students to support the Day of Silence and are depriving other students who come to class to learn, only to be postponed to cater to a group of people. It is no wonder we're having problems with meeting standards, there are some teachers in the high school that are more concerned about promoting their own political beliefs at the expense of others. When did the definition of a teacher reflect activist? Teachers are there to educate, facilitate thought, provoke discussion, and not to impress their personal beliefs toward some groups and not others.

If the students and teachers that started the Day of Silence truly care so much about discrimination, join in and recognize the other groups that suffer the same discrimination, maybe Native Day, Philippines Day, Religion Day, or just Racism Day. Step up to the plate and address all of the discrimination that occurs. Some people can't change their skin color, accent their parents have, or the place they were born.

Discrimination is discrimination, don't pick and choose whom you will support. It's all ugly, disgusting, and most importantly unnecessary.

Richard Smith


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