Monday, October 3, 2016

I'm sorry I cannot answer that...

Two articles used:

                              Donald Trump’s not-so-nice Campaign

Social media has made almost anything possible.  It can sway the way you think and conduct yourself, even the way you see your own self.  Social media can highlight good points or bad points.  Sometimes these points are true, sometimes they are not, sometimes they are made to look as if they are something they are not. 
Towards the beginning of the election, that is what I thought.  Social media was putting a costume on this crazed candidate: Donald Trump.  Before I decided to do my own research and just sort of nodded at what people were saying about the election, I thought he was just being made out to seem like the Big Bad Wolf.  Hey, he wants to run the country…he can’t be that bad.  Well he can.  I spent a majority of my time working at summer school, reading articles about his ideas and plans.  I had already seen the many videos posted where he degrades pretty much anyone who is not like him, but I decided to read into the more technical “stuff.” 
I am no expert on politics, I am not even sure how much I can say I know is concrete about this election.  But I know one thing—kids; my students.  I know what love feels like and I know what hate feels like.  The latter is best to avoid. 
Last year, freshman from Providence, RI who live mostly in poverty asked me if their relatives would have to be sent back to their countries if Trump became president.  I told them not to worry about it, I do not think one individual could even muster the man power.  My answer to them proceeded with an “I hate that guy, I hope he dies.”

He says “we do not have a country," in this CNN interview with Erin Burnett, "if we have illegal aliens.”  Was this country not build on "illegal aliens?"  I agree with Erin here, how is this possible?  The logistics… It sounds like he has it figured out but actually finding these people and having the man power sounds impossible.  Is invoking fear into people a way to get people to leave willingly?  This is a big part of why my students are scared—the "law abiding citizens."  This was a video they had showed me a few times, questioning me…(me unable to give proper answers).
“Latino students who carry their birth certificates and Social Security cards to school because they are afraid they will be deported” (Kristof 2). This came from a North Carolina teacher who made student observations. “He was supporting Trump because he was going to kill all of the Muslims if he became president!” (Kristof 2). This was said by a fifth grader to a Muslim peer.
Since Trump has begun his rhetoric expressing hate towards immigrants, Islam, and people of color. People have started to take notice to these people who they have lived with every day and have highlighted their differences.  Trump is allowing people (young and old) to say things they might not have said a year ago.  He is giving people more leverage to say what has been brewing in their minds.  Last semester, one of my professors said: “Trump is saying the things people want to but can’t.” Hate.  Everyone might have some hate in them somewhere for something or someone.  It is something most of us have been taught to conceal, much like a weapon.  Well, Trump is basically saying to take out those weapons [hate] and find people with the same weapons as you and come together. 

                    your parents were immigrants? 
                             Who said anything about taking over the country?

1.  the belief that all members of each race possess characteristics or abilities specific to that race, especially so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races.
o    prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one's own race is superior.

He is not only spreading hate, but promoting the idea that his race is superior to other races.  His white race is superior to all other races.
Briana Larios, a 15-year-old Mexican-American in Forest Grove, Oregon is a honor roll student who hopes to go to Harvard, said some of her white classmates “openly express their dislike of my race” (Kristof 1).  She is being told she does not belong in the country and should go back to where she was born.  This is convincing Briana she should be home-schooled. 
White students in the same community chant the phrase “Trump, Trump, Trump” through the hallways as well as hang banners that read “Build a Wall!”  This has prompted Latinos in the school to stage a walk out. 

                    Build a Wall sign at Forest Grove School

My questions:  Is Trump aware of the amount of bullying that occurs daily in schools?  Is he aware of the number of suicides because of bullying?  Has he seen gun violence in schools?  Does he know some of the reasons why there has been gun violence in schools?  Does he know how impressionable young minds can be?  How easily they can cling to an idea if it sounds good?  Why is he egging on this hate?

               Mexican and Latino students protesting back

Maureen Costello of the Southern Poverty Law Center said “we’ve spend the last 15 years fighting bullying in schools, and the example set by the Trump campaign has broken down the doors, and a tidal wave of bullying has come through” (Kristof 2). It appears Trump is undoing years of tedious work.

Inflammatory talk is a big part of how Donald Trump has gained so many followers.  This can be dangerous, especially for those who already have hate and racism rooted in them somewhere.  This fuels the fire instead of putting it out.  In Kristof’s article, “When Whites Just Don’t Get it” he writes,  “Polling and analysis by The Economist found that Trump is propelled in part by a wave of white “racial resentment” that blacks are coddled whiners, protected by a stifling political correctness” (Kristof 1).  It might be safe to say that Donald Trump is a white man with power and privilege, embodying white power and supremacy.  Although Trump has used his rhetoric for followers and many are lining up to support him, there are many who do not support him. However, many whites are still unintentionally acting in ways that propel inequality.  Johnson would agree with this. This refers back to the conveyor belt of white privilege most of us unknowingly are traveling on.  It is the elephant in the room with a hard to pronounce name.

Black CNN panelist, Angela Rye, gives her input on some of Trump's racist actions.  She offers ways he could restore his relationship with the black community:

He also touches on the processing of discipline for black students as opposed to white students.  “A Stanford study found that teachers reviewing discipline reports in some cases were more likely to favor harsh punishment for a student named “Deshawn” or “Darnell” than one named “Greg” or “Jake” (Kristof 2).  This brings me back to Delpit’s, “Other Peoples’ Children.”  Would she question the teacher?  I feel she would first inquire if it was a white teacher giving out these referrals and then ask the teacher how they handled the situation.  Was the teacher explicit with the student? Or did the teacher question the student about what they were doing it, as a white female would more or less.  This also brings me back to the question, if Trump is planting a seed in the mindset of whites that they are superior to blacks, how will discipline be handled if Trump wins presidency?  Will people feel they can just suspend black students because that is the tone of the country? Will understanding our black citizens be put back on the back burner?  Even though there are a lot of racial incidents occurring right now, as a nation we are having conversations that were not had, so we are making SOME progress.  I would hate to see all of that fall apart because of the leader of our country. 


  1. Marissa,
    I love how you acknowledge that Trump is promoting hate. So many of his followers fail to realize that their actions suggest that white people are better than other races. The fact that "many whites are still unintentionally acting in ways that propel inequality" is extremely frustrating to recognize. People are so desperate to put the blame on a group of people instead of seeking ways to fix problems within our government.

  2. I love how you made this about our students. Like you, I do not follow politics very much so I found the blog to be a challenging one to write. I love how your wrapped it all up into something that we can all relate to as we all know how important our students are to us. Bullying is already such a big problem in schools and everywhere - Trump's statements definitely take us back a few decades in terms of the segregation and bullying that may come if he is elected.

  3. Thank for grounding this election by analyzing its impacts on reality. Trump is surely promoting hate and were only dealing with the present results of it. You really made me stop and wonder what the hate could grow into. If it is bad now, I can only imagine how much worse it would become after 4 more years of comments. We are adults who can hopefully remove ourselves from hateful situations. Unfortunately, our students do not all have that privilege.