It feels so good to, as Jose said, partake in “intelligent dialogue and thorough action.”
Jena 6 is on the topic of my mind. It has been ever since it happened. What is good with the state of America? Its 2007. Much has changed, much has remained the same.
So step 1: Do a lesson on Jena 6. Actually, the inspiration to do a Jena 6 teach-in came from some angry comments to a post of mine where I linked a detentioned Brooklyn 8 to the Jena 6…
Bet, mission accomplished- Teach-in on Jena 6= Intelligent dialogue. The next step: thorough action.
It was special. Through the lesson, I created (or rather witnessed) the passion of young revolutionaries! The class was filled with young souls and strong minds ready to “do what it takes to support this horrible, horrible atrocity,” said by “Sekou.”
Ok, so these kids are ready.
One of my students said he was “ready to get on a bus and head out to Jena, Louisiana to protest in front of the courtroom.” It just so happened that my principal walked in to observe my class at that very moment. Perfect timing, I thought to myself.
So anyway- the action is the Jena 6 bake sale week (that my students thought of) that is going on this week to raise funds for the efforts to support the Jena 6 and other victims of racism and letters to Governor Blanco. Today was the 1st day of the bake sale, and we raised $75 dollars! Every dollar counts! We got 4 more days of Jena 6 cupcakes, muffins, and cake slices.
Best of all, my kids feel connected to something larger than what they know, who they are, and where they are from. But at the same time, I constantly remind my students that these are the Jena 6, but can easily be the Brooklyn 6. So we need to give respect and support in the same fashion that we’d want people who have the opportunity to effect change would do for us.