New Kent Charles City Chronicle

News for New Kent County and Charles City County, Virginia | January 26, 2020

Editorial: It’s 2020; discrimination and racism still exists

By Andre Jones | January 14, 2020 11:24 pm

It’s 2020. Discrimination still exists.

It’s very sad that even in today’s time after centuries of history and decades of fights that discrimination is still present in today’s world. Instead of learning to love each other and accept one another for our differences, there are those who instead choose to single us out because of our unique qualities and traits.

In December 2019, a note with a racial slur was given to an African-American student in New Kent High School telling them to “go home.” It was a very disturbing sight to see. A group of people, let alone young people, should not be involved in this type of racism.

There are a few things that I want to say because I’ve been thinking about discrimination as a whole. The first thing is that discrimination is taught and not an inhabited trait. There is no logical way to comprehend for one person to dislike somebody else because of their skin complexion. I, myself, am an African-American male understands that stereotypes are just as harmful as discrimination. There have been times where I’ve witnessed racism first-hand. An example of this was a court case that I sat in where the defendant said, “If it ain’t white, it ain’t right.” That was a startling moment because how can a person control the color of their skin? To be disliked because of how God created you is no justification.

But it’s not just racism that we are continuing to deal with. From sexual orientation to social economic levels, discrimination is a taught characteristic. Being bullied because you don’t have the means to wear top-notch clothes to not eating a good meal is wrong. It’s flat out wrong.

There are no excuses that can defend the reason why a person can dislike another one based on appearances or beliefs. You don’t like a person because they live in a certain area of a county? That makes no sense. You don’t like a person because their hair color is different? Makes no sense. A person has a disability that you don’t understand? That still gives you no reason to bully them.

I am going to add this because I think this is relevant to this editorial; I am glad God made me “blind” to an extent of dealing with people. When I say that, it means I see everybody as humans. I may see race, gender orientation, social status, but I see people first.

Everyday, I deal with students and speak with them. I know about their situations, ups and downs, and their lives. I don’t see Caucasian, African-American, Native American, Asian-American, Pacific Islander, or any other type of race you want to talk about. I see students who want opportunities to be successful. I see students on both sides of the wall, those who can afford things and those who can’t. I treat each of them equally, helping them out whether they have items or not to make it through a day. I am a thorough believer that a student (especially an athlete) should not be excluded from participating in activities because he or she doesn’t have a ride to and from practices. That’s just not me. That’s why I pick them up and take them home. That’s why I try to make sure they have the necessary items to succeed, both in the classroom and outside the classroom. That is called love, not favoritism.

As people, we must do better to fight racism and discrimination. It hurts my heart knowing that something that is taught can be the thing that tears our world apart. You can be open to disagree with somebody’s beliefs but disliking them on that foundation isn’t justification.

It’s time for our society to grow up. Let’s end racism. Let’s end discrimination. It’s time to embrace love as a culture.