"Look Who's Leaving! All the Black People!"

by rickykoch1 on September 8, 2015 - 3:07pm

In the article entitled "School Principal Fired after Racist Remarks about 'black people' at Graduation," written by Hilary Hanson, published on May 5th 2105, posted on the Huffington Post, talks about a women named Nancy Gordeuk, a school principal being fired after making racist remarks about 'black people' at a high school graduation. During the graduation, Gordeuk accidentally dismissed the crowd before letting th valedictorian give their speech. Gordeuk asked and tried to keep the families from leaving. In the article, it does not stat whether the families heard Gordeuk asking them to stay. Feeling frustrated Gordeuk later then went on a rant which then led to her to say something racist. After the families heard her making that racist comment, families quickly left the ceremony. Gordeuk later went onto NBC news to tell her side of the story. Basically she says that she didn't realize the term she used was racist. she said that she only stating the obvious which was that 'black people' were the only ones leaving. Gordeuk later on sent an email to all of the families asking for forgiveness but no response from any families.

 

In my opinion, I believe that the families did have a right to react the way they did. I don’t think that Gordeuk is necessarily a racist but, seeing that she is a school principle, she could've reacted a bit better rather than blurting out something she’d later regret. During the ceremony, Gordeuk says “look who’s leaving! All the black people!” She could've definitely worded this better. She could've just said “look at all the people leaving,” instead she had to add something that was completely irrelevant. I think that someone without any knowledge of the current anthropological view of “race” will interpret the lady in this article as a racist. I think we shouldn't categorize people into certain race, or make racial stereotypes. This can be connected to Jared Diamond. He says that we shouldn't classify people into specific categories just based on their looks and I strongly agree with him. One of the strengths of this article is that they show how one single racist comment can get people talking. Gordeuk spoke without thinking and now she's receiving a lot of hate. This just shows what type of society we've become. When someone says something racist we make them feel horrible about it. One of the weaknesses of this article is that we only have one side of the story. They didn't interview the family’s side, they only interviewed Gordeuk which I personally think is bad. I would've preferred if they could've had both sides of the story. I strongly believe that we shouldn't put people into specific categories. I also believe that we should watch what we say, even if we say racist jokes to our friends, racism isn't funny. I also believe that we shouldn't make stereotypical comments. I already received comments that I find are offensive. I am an Asian girl and I often get stereotypical comments saying “but you're Asian, you're supposed to be good in math, you're supposed to love math,” false. I suck in math and I hate math. In conclusion, I hope that people will think before they speak and that we shouldn't put labels on people.

 

Reference:

Hanson, H. (2015, May 5) “School Principal Fired After Racist Remark About 'Black People' At Graduation.” Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/05/14/nancy-gordeuk-fired-racist-graduation_n_7283774.html

 

Diamond, J. (2015). Race Without Color. A. Nouvet, 381-204-LA gr.00545: The Myth of Race and the Reality of Racism.

 

Comments

As I was scrolling through the various posts, I came across this one and was drawn in by the title and was curious as to what it was about. As I proceeded to read the summary I was shocked to hear about this current event. I personally think it is horrible that a woman in a high school principal position would ever utter such a comment. This comment is blatantly racist. This whole situation must have been very chaotic, seeing as though a large group of people were dismissed then called back after the fact. It is quite possible that certain families did not hear the request to return to their seats in order to finish the ceremony. I agree with the post. Yes, we are all human and get frustrated from time to time; however, the frustrated principal certainly did not need to target black people with that comment. As it states in the article “Human Races: Biological Reality or Cultural Delusion” by Darren Curnoe, for many centuries people believed that white people were superior to other “races”, the black race being one of them. This comment from the principal, whether it was on purpose or not, continues to play on these beliefs, assuming that it was only the black families that were leaving and no white families also left. I think that we as a society need to become more educated on this concept of race, and the reality of racism, because the lack of knowledge on this topic leads to events such as this one discussed. Every time a person, especially one in an authority position says a negative comment about one particular race, it passes on racist ideas to others, and continues this vicious cycle of racist thoughts and beliefs.