August 12, 2005

NY state panel to "ensure" students taught "enough" about slavery

A New York state educational panel is crafting a new study to ensure that grade school students are taught "enough" about the "physical and psychological terrorism" of the African slave trade.

The Amistad Commission, named after the slave ship that was bravely commandeered by its unwilling passengers, could also recommend state-sponsored educational programs on racism and training for teachers.

The panel, which will consist of 19 politically appointed unpaid members who need not be academics, was approved by the Legislature and signed into law last week by Gov. Pataki.

The state already requires students to learn about slavery and the Underground Railroad, but supporters said the role slaves played in creating modern America cannot be overestimated and that a better understanding of their contributions need to be taught.

"Whatever we're doing in our school system right now to teach slavery is not enough," said Assemblyman Keith Wright (D-Manhattan), who championed the bill. "It's America's deep, dark secret, and for too long, it's been swept under the rug."

Swept under the rug? When will there be "enough" education? When every white student feels guilty? When every black student hates all whites?

And will the changes include information about black slave owners in the South or African blacks who sold their bretheren to the slave traders? Somehow, I doubt it. It doesn't fit into the political agenda of the handwringers in New York.

Posted by mhking at August 12, 2005 09:43 AM | TrackBack

Mike, I don't think that the purpose of providing more education is not to make black students hate white students or to make white sudents feel guilty, the education is more for understanding how the country was built/developed and how a certain demographic of human beings were used without even recognizing them as human and not appropriately acknowleging their contribution to the society and it's growth then and now. Slow your roll on the political agenda angle and realize that there can never he "enough" education, proper education should not create feelings of hate or guilt.

Posted by: B.P. at August 12, 2005 01:21 PM

There's education, and then there's obsession. The idea that "there can never be enough" education is obsession.

Posted by: McGehee at August 12, 2005 02:59 PM

It would be nice if they would talk about slavery happening in the here and now in the Sudan. You know, where we can actually do something.

Posted by: Steven J. Kelso Sr. at August 12, 2005 04:17 PM

"Never enough education" perhaps -- but perhaps too much on pre-1860 slavery, not enough on post WII civil rights legislation that was filibustered against by racist Southern Democrats, like ex-KKK Bryd.

Not enough on the Arab Muslim slavers all over Africa.

Not enough on sex-slaves today, in Cambodia, Thailand, for the UN in Kosovo and Congo.

In fact, I'd guess the desire to focus on pre-1860 slavery in the USA is precisely to Crowd Out any talk of other, possibly more relevant, involuntary servitude issues.

Which reminds of ex-Stanford President David Kennedy calling for a return to a "slave-army."

Posted by: Tom Grey - Liberty Dad at August 13, 2005 11:44 AM
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