Most of us have heard this saying, "The more things change, the more they stay the same." It's just an unfortunate reality of the times that we live in. The fact of the matter is, while the world we live in is in a constant state of change, old habits and lessons taught either directly or indirectly continue to manifest through behavior. Children are usually a direct representation of what they learn and are taught at home. Taking powerful cues from their parents. Some of the learning process is positive, and some of it is negative. But children will always represent whatever they've learned. Case in point.
A Philadelphia mother says she was in disbelief when she found out what happened to her son, an eighth grade student at Northeast Regional Catholic School.
“I couldn’t believe that this is still going on in this day and age,” said the woman, who did not want to be identified. “Especially at a religious school.”
The woman says her son, who is African American, was the target of racist bullying back on Feb. 27. According to the woman, two white students took her son’s notebook and wrote racial slurs on it. The page, which the woman showed to the local news, includes a picture of a swastika, the N-word, as well as the words “Koolaid,” “watermelon,” and “fried chicken.”
Officials at Northeast Regional say they suspended the two students for two days and made them apologize. The mother of the victim claims her son never received an apology however. She also doesn’t believe the two day suspension was enough.
“I asked for the children to be removed from my son’s classroom,” she said. “That also fell on deaf ears.”
Two months after the incident, the Archdiocese says the students who wrote the slurs were removed from the victim’s class.
“I’m sorry that he felt uncomfortable in the classroom,” said Jacqueline Coccia, school superintendent of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. “This is the first time that I’m hearing he was uncomfortable in the setting.”
So if this young man and his mother were comfortable being in a classroom with these racist children then they would still be in class regardless of their atrocious behavior. This implies that the victim was at fault for being "uncomfortable".
Despite the long amount of time before the students were removed, Coccia says the school followed proper policy.
“The school wanted to put other measures into place first,” she said. “They were working with the apology and the initial suspension.”
While those two students were removed, the parent of another African American student at the school claims her son was also a victim of racist bullying.
“Somebody pushed him and called him a n*****,” said the woman, who also did not want to be identified.
Coccia also claimed she hadn’t known about that incident until Hairston informed her.
“To the best of my knowledge this school does not have a history of this type of behavior,” she said.
A parent of one of the victims filed a police report. Philadelphia Police say detectives are currently investigating. Both parents believe the students who targeted their sons should be expelled.
I concur with these parents. If these children are not made to face the consequences of their actions then it condones their behavior, and they learn nothing except for the lessons in prejudice that continue at home.