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Is Teaching American History Racist?


"We need to educate our kids to see how far we’ve come in America. How is that racism?"

Image source: Facebook

A white Michigan middle school teacher remains suspended two weeks after he was placed an administrative leave.

His crime?

Teaching history.

Alan Barron was teaching his eighth-grade class about the history of racial segregation when he showed a video featuring blackface.

The video was historical, showing how white Americans used blackface to mockingly imitate black people as part of a broader social scheme of repression — but a school administrator sitting in on the class found it inappropriate, and Barron was suspended the next day.

He was only a month from retirement, having served 36 years with the school district.

“(My child) was more offended that they stopped the video,” Adrienne Aaron, who is married to a black man and whose child was in Barron's class, told the Monroe News. “It had nothing to do with racism. History is history. We need to educate our kids to see how far we’ve come in America. How is that racism?”

Barron's supporters flocked to Facebook, expressing disbelief at the school's decision.

Some students even made T-shirts.

Image source: Facebook Image source: Facebook

"Mr. Barron is a darn good teacher, people get offended over everything these days," wrote one commenter. "Even history."

Follow Zach Noble (@thezachnoble) on Twitter


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