July 1, 2020
Dear Friends of ACETA,
Like so many of you, we, the Steering Committee of the Association of College English Teachers of Alabama, are shocked by the killing of Mr. George Floyd at the hands of the police.
Mr. Floyd’s death has led to renewed protests against police brutality and against the systemic racism that affects so many; it is important that organizations like ours take this moment to declare publicly a commitment to justice and equity for all even when it threatens or goes against the very ideals we are accustomed.
This letter is our declaration.
Equity is not about handouts or a handout. Equity is not even about assisting the helpful or negating the helpless. Equity is making sure that everyone has the same opportunity of living a life and pursuing happiness.
Consider this visual: Three little boys attempt to see over a high fence. Obviously, they all have height challenges as the fence is too tall. But they are also of varying heights. Equality would be giving them a block of the same height, width, and number. Equity would require the addition of the little boys’ heights to be factored in; one boy might require 1 additional block, another 2 additional blocks, and the third an additional 3 blocks so that they all are able to see over the fence.
At the beginning of June, our parent organization, The National Council of Teachers of English, published a statement denouncing “all forms of racial violence and brutality.” The letter goes on to encourage members to be the makers of change in their own classrooms by promoting equity in the classroom. We encourage you to read this letter in full here.
Alabama is no stranger to protests agitating for racial equality … Continue reading