Thursday, July 21, 2005

Say it ain't so . . .

Seems like a Democrat-leaning school district in California’s San Bernardino County will incorporate Ebonics into its curriculum - “Ebonics Suggested For District” . In the article, Mary Texeira, a sociology professor at Cal State San Bernardino states,

"Ebonics is a different language, it's not slang as many believe. For many of these students Ebonics is their language, and it should be considered a foreign language. These students should be taught like other students who speak a foreign language.

Come on, Prof. Texeira - Ebonics as a foreign language! A dissenting board member, Teresa Parra, argued that the district is opening up a can of worms. Said Parra,

"I'm afraid that now that we have this the Hispanic community, our largest population, will say, 'We want something for us.' Next we'll have the Asian community and the Jewish community (asking for their own programs). When will it end?'

As I’m not intimately familiar with it, I did a quick Google search on "Ebonics".

The first hit was a research piece from The Center for Applied Linguistics containing several good background documents.

The second hit was an Ebonics translator . I pulled a sentence from the article. The sentence:

"Because Ebonics can have a negative stigma, we're not focusing on that, Cooper said. We are affirming and recognizing Ebonics through supplemental reading books (for students).” . . . .


"Because Ebonics can gots uh negative stigma, We be not focusing on dat, Cooper said. We iz affirming an' recognizing Ebonics through supplemental reading books (for students)."

Again, I know nothing about Ebonics, but this can't be what is being advocated for the school district! I personally find this language offensive!

Yesterday, Project 21, which calls itself "a leading voice in the black community since 1992" denounced the plan saying, “Ebonics has nothing to do with African heritage and is simply the legitimization of modern urban American slang that will harm the professional development of black children if it is put on the same level as Standard English”

While I’m glad we don’t have to fight this battle here at home, I couldn’t help but recall one of the funniest scenes from the movie Airplane!


Blogger Amy Allen said...

Good scoop.
That harebrained scheme is the most racially prejudiced thing of which I've ever heard. Contrary to popular belief, most African Americans do not omit auxillary verbs.

5:24 PM  
Blogger Amy Allen said...

Or, sir, should I have said "Preach it, brother!"

5:30 PM  

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