The downside of being black in a predominantly white school

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The history still haunts the present with many attitudes of the past showing itself today.

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The downside of being black in a predominantly white school


It has been over 60 years since the landmark case that decided that segregation was unconstitutional. Until this case it was seen as necessary to separate students of different races for no other logical reason than the difference in skin color.

To this day, America still has a lot of racial separation due to decades of a practice called redlining. Redlining was a term that came about in the early 1960s to describe the practice banks did by drawing red lines in low income black communities to discriminate against them through denying bank loans, raising prices, and denying insurance.

In present day America, we are still living with the effects of a history of redlining.

At Palm Harbor University High School, the majority race is and has been white. Since Palm Harbor is known as a high-income community relatively far from a major city. This has allowed white people to live within the safe confines of a non redlined district since the beginning of people living here.

The longer it is from the racist period of segregation in America, the more races will start to integrate. Over time, minorities who have been historically discriminated against have been able to integrate and live in areas where they were historically redlined away from.

Kha’dajah Dean, originally from West Tampa, is a Junior at PHUHS. Her African-American ethnicity makes her background different from the average PHUHS student.

“Something I hate is that using racial slurs is something people think is cool,” said Dean.

John Jeffers is a senior at PHUHS. His African-American and gay background also distinguishes him as different from the stereotypical PHUHS student.

“I see a lot of people using hateful words and claiming it was a joke, it has never been a joke and never will be a joke,” Jeffers said. He went on to describe his story of reporting a discriminatory situation.

“It takes such a long time to have the school handle situations like these, I am happy it got handled, but I would like to see situations handled quickly to protect those discriminated against,” Jeffers said.

Dean has had similar situations with reporting discriminatory situations, most of them being people using racial slurs indirectly and directly used toward her.

“I’ve reported discriminatory situations, but it is hard to get action from administration,” said Dean.

For people who have never known diversity in their life, growing up in white neighborhoods and white schools keeps them from having any sort of connections with people from other backgrounds.

Without proper diversity education, teenagers on many occasions do not fully understand the power of the words they can choose. Now that the world has people from all backgrounds and ethnicity starting to live and learn together; many of the attitudes of our past are still going on today.


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