Editor’s Note: The message below is from Dr. Linda George, a former educator at Firebaugh High School, in Lynwood, California. who spoke them on December 8, 2022 at a Lynwood school board meeting after receiving racist anti-Black photos about Black people from a whistleblower who sent them to her to report it without retaliation from the school leadership.
By Dr. Linda George
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”
I have received many communications regarding anti-Black hate speech at Firebaugh and they have escalated since this latest issue has come to light.
This is very concerning to the parents, community, faculty, staff, and students because the anti-Black speech is escalating. Last year the person or persons behind this anti-Black hate speech was only using the N word.
This year, the anti-Black speech is full blown terrorism against the minority community of this school environment.
What is compelling is that several school sites have experienced or is experiencing anti-Black hate but staff is too afraid to report it. Shame on this District!
For example, in 2016, Black students at Lynwood High School came forward because they were experiencing anti-Black hate and no one was protecting them. The same thing happened in 2017 at Lynwood Middle School where a teacher placed students in groups to discuss the N word and why Blacks are pimps and hoes. Consequently, this teacher is currently working at Firebaugh. Please let’s not forget the teacher that cut the little girl’s hair and called her a pick-a-nanny because her braids were too noisy. It is for these reasons I am not holding the site administrators accountable for the anti-Black hate. This is a district-wide problem that falls at the feet of the Board of Education and Superintendent. In conclusion, a meeting was held at Lynwood High School today for Black students only. The students were offered a Black studies class which does not address the problem. It is my opinion that this class should be offered to all students so that everyone can understand the sacrifice and contributions of Blacks to this country and this community. This would help the groups understand why we must work together and stop this racism and racial tension and work together. There is a lack of a policies and procedures in place to monitor racism. The parents and the community demands a plan of action put into place to insure that anti-Black hate is not a common practice and will not continue to happen. It is not acceptable for this to be swept under the rug anymore. Moreover, the perpetrators should suffer severe consequences.
Dr. Linda George
The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr