I’m starting to understand the real failings of multi-cultural education growing up in K-12 schools. We gave everyone access to the “fun” parts of culture. Let’s sing the dreidel song! Now we understand the Jewish experience. Let’s talk about segregation. Wasn’t that wrong. Aren’t we glad it’s over? Let’s take turns reading parts of the “I Have a Dream” speech. We had access to the easy stuff without having to really examine the hard stuff. And we were giving easy access to things that aren’t “ours” and shouldn’t be “ours.” So you can’t just pick up the “fun” stuff and put it into your party theme or Facebook pictures. I’m using simple terms like fun because that’s how multiculturalism was given to us as children. And while it may have served a purpose at the time, it gave us too much access to claim things that aren’t ours.
I honestly, honestly think that is some of the reasons why the race parties are such a horrible fad on college campuses. They are carrying on what we did in elementary school. Let’s make culture a party! Everyone bring your cultural food and put on a costume! The racism is present and good percentage of the participants are really expressing deep rooted racism. But some truly don’t want to “understand why it’s wrong” when they are re-enacting what we used to do with culture in elementary schools. Culture was supposed to be fun. “I don’t understand why you are mad now? I thought culture was a party!” Party’s over kids. Put down the head-dress.
— Brian Henry (via theteej)
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