Monday, December 12, 2016

Russ on Reading: Our Schools and Prejudice: The Need to Connect

Russ on Reading: Our Schools and Prejudice: The Need to Connect:

Our Schools and Prejudice: The Need to Connect


Three articles in the Sunday Review Section of the New York Times this week resonated strongly with me in this time of greater and greater division in my country. First was a report by Ben Austin on Violence and Division on the South Side of Chicagowhich reported on efforts to get some dialogue going between the mostly minority inhabitants of the South Side of Chicago and the mostly white area of Mount Greenwood, just adjacent to it. The area has been the sight of protests, sometimes violent, in the wake of a killing of a Black man by a white police officer. A small group from both sides of the issue are working to get a conversation on race and prejudice and "Black Lives Matter" and "Blue Lives Matter" going. Progress has been difficult, but at least the discussions have started.

Next came a piece by Heather C. McGhee titled, "I'm Prejudiced", He Said. Then We Kept Talking. This was the remarkable account of the author, the president of Demos, a public policy organization, and a man named Garry who called into a show on C-SPAN to make the startling confession of the title. The caller asked for help with his prejudice. This led to several meetings with McGhee in which both of them learned a great deal about each other and about the character of prejudice itself. As McGhee puts it, "Gary asked, 'What can I do to change?'" and his ability to acknowledge the persistence of prejudice allowed her to answer.

Finally there was, The Roots of Implicit Bias", by Daniel A. Yudkin and Jay 
Russ on Reading: Our Schools and Prejudice: The Need to Connect:


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