So here’s the story as I understand it. Every year at this elementary school they celebrate Thanksgiving by having the kids dress up as pilgrims and “indians”. Parents, mainly those of Native descent, have begun to object to this for several reasons. 1. It’s a completely inaccurate portrayal of what went on when the pilgrims got here. (I am also kind of sick of the way we lie to kids about history, only to have to reteach it later. Columbus discovered America, anyone? Lincoln fought the war to free the slaves? But I digress.) 2. The “indian” outfits are stupid and based on racist stereotypes, anyway. All they were asking is that they have the Thanksgiving stuff without the ignorant dress up time. The school board agreed and said that the feast should happen without costumes.
Well, most of you who read this blog can guess what happened.
Condit Elementary School parent Michelle Raheja said she was not prepared for the backlash she got from helping to write an e-mail to a kindergarten teacher at the elementary school.
She and her daughter have been harassed as a result, she said Wednesday.
“It was a private message to one kindergarten teacher,” Raheja said. “She did not ask me if she could circulate it to others or circulate it to the principal. I don’t think she was ill-intentioned.”
On Tuesday, numerous parents and their children dressed in American Indian and Pilgrim costumes to protest a Claremont Unified School District decision to have a Thanksgiving feast without the costumes that have been traditional for decades.
Another group of protesters, many younger and of American Indian descent, carried signs that said “Racism,” “No Thanks No Giving,” “Respect” and “Don’t Celebrate Genocide.”
Raheja said she and about 15 to 20 parents in the school helped write the private e-mail message about their concerns with the dress in the Thanksgiving feast to a Condit elementary teacher. She said the e-mail was redistributed without her knowledge.
At the Tuesday feast, Raheja said her 5-year-old daughter was harassed. A parent dressed up as an American Indian, Raheja said, “did a war dance around my daughter.” The parent then told her daughter and others to “go to hell,” she said.
Let’s pause here a moment. A war dance. A WAR DANCE, PEOPLE.
What the fuck kind of ass do you have to be to tell a 5 year old to go to hell? The same kind of ass who would do a “war dance” around one.
I don’t advocate violence, but if I had seen that, I would have just hauled off and hit that person.
On Wednesday, she said she had received more than 250 “hateful and intimidating” e-mails.
“They go from being anxious about political correctness to calling me (an epithet). They don’t know my daughter’s name, but they’ve said hateful and disgusting things about my daughter.” (Classy! –abw)
At Tuesday’s feast, Raheja said she was told “if I had any issue with the school, I need to leave the school, and my daughter would not be welcomed.”
Raheja said, “We love Condit. We love the staff. Overall, we’ve had a very good experience. But the anger and hatred has been unbearable.”
If you have an opinion on this matter, I suggest you express it to the Condit staff and administrators yourself. Website is here, complete with contact information. I personally think it’s a little messed up for them to have even allowed parents to act in despicable ways around kids at their school or to distribute that email in the first place.
Google News on the subject here. Beware clueless people being quoted and yammering on about how horrible political correctness is because it keeps their children from parading around in “headdresses”. Idiots.