Friday, June 29, 2007

On SCOTUS: What Now?

Brown v. the Board of Education isn't completely destroyed, but it's close to it. I don't see how programs that are completely race-based will survive, such as METCO. Segregation already exists throughout most of the country - heck, I don't think there was a single African American in my graduating class when I went to High School. I don't see how this country can get over things like racism if there isn't racial integration at a young age, just like it's impossible for many to get over homophobia without meeting someone who isn't heterosexual. It's in our interests for integration, but there's not much this country can do to protect it with the current President and Supreme Court. I guess we're going to have to be creative to use whatever wiggle room is left.


joe said...

Do you think the fact you graduated with so few blacks is segregation or just the fact that black people don't live in Swampscott? Same thing with my high school, I could count the blacks graduating in my class on one hand, and my high school had 1,200 kids. You can't just forcibly relocate people to fill some politician's racial quota.

Ryan Adams said...

The answer to your first question: what's the difference?

We, as a country, haven't moved to the point where integration exists yet. Now, in a town like Swampscott, dealing with that is difficult. We do have the Metco program, but less than one bus load of kids employs using it. Furthermore, because every one of them wakes up before 5am to actually get to Swampscott on time, they're all at a disadvantage.

However, even in cities, segregation still exists - of the order that exists in Swampscott. While it's hard to "relocate people to fill some politician's quota" in Swampscott, it's not difficult to allow certain minorities more access to better neighborhood schools in cities like Seattle, which is exactly what they were doing before their policy was struck down.

The policy in Seattle was that if a school had less than 15% African Americans attending, African Americans would have first choice in going there up to 15%. In schools that had more than 55%, white people had first choice. The policy, by the way, was affecting almost no students' first choices: it was rare that anyone didn't get their first choice.

There are other ways of doing schools than using neighborhoods in cities and towns that are just as valid - and every school in each community should be just as diverse as the next, or close to it. It's awefully hard to educate the populace to not be racist if they don't ever have the chance to befriend people of differing ethnicities, so diversity is an important principal.

Anonymous said...

Ryan - Metco is more than a generation old. I think it's almost 40 years old.

If the desired result of integration still hasn't been acomplished - then isn't the program a failure?

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