“Currently, it is the schools that are majorly responsible for socializing, instilling values, moralizing and instructing Black learners. I believe that in handing near total control over to the education system, we are allowing for the systematic annihilation of our intellectual and therefore future potential. We are inviting people whose best interests it is to keep us ignorant, docile and complacent to have control and dominance over our minds. We are permitting our children to be systematically and purposefully prepared to be “larger” society’s worker ants.

Why do we do this? Because during the civil rights movements we naively and ignorantly fought to assimilate our education along with those who did not want us on their school property let alone in their classrooms. Those who never intended “formal” education be extended to us and furthermore, we put the control of our “mind building” into the hands of people who did not know anything about us and had no interest in learning or sharing any knowledge with us in the first place. We know that this was a huge mistake and now it’s time to rebound from years of mis-education and mind control.”

My sister Rachelle aka Blacklit101, dropped some serious knowledge and enlightenment with her post a few days ago: “Eurocentric Brainwash: The Bain Of Black Existence In North America”. The above paragraphs which are from this post resonated with me as a father of two Black children who is personally involved in their education, particularly as a counter to the mis-education of the dominant culture’s educational system.

Not too long ago I was having a discussion with a friend about the lack of African/Black historical accomplishments and achievements taught to our children in schools. He stated that as a people, we should demand that the educational system teach this history. I asked him why as a people we don’t take the responsibility to do this ourselves!? Why as a people should we again… go with our hand out… and beg demand that the “white man” teach our children about our history!?

I personally know people of other cultures, who take on this responsibility themselves to teach (and therefore empower) their children about their history, language, religious beliefs, customs, etc. I know of Jews, East Indians, Muslims, even Polish people who send their children to “Saturday” school to learn about their culture.

Not us “negroes”. On Saturdays we sit our children in front of the tel-lie-vision to watch cartoons, watch BET to learn the latest songs and dance moves, or to play videos games all day or go play sports. Then when they fail or lag behind in their academic endeavours, we cry: “it’s racism… the school is racist, the teachers are racist, the educational system is racist…blah, blah blah”. Instead of pointing the finger at ourselves, taking the responsibility for failing as parents… we blame the “white man”. The same “white man” you turned your children over to teach them.

I can say that in my household, my wife and I have taken the responsibility to teach our children about African, African-Canadian, African-Caribbean and African-American history and culture. For example, when we went to Nova Scotia for vacation this summer, my wife and I took them to the Black Cultural Center to expose them to African-Canadian history. We then went to patronize a restaurant in the community and also attended one of the historically black Baptist church that Sunday. We do regular African/Black history lessons and read books by and about African/Black people. My son has been to Jamaica to visit family twice and we are planning to take him and our daughter there next spring to visit their great grandmother before she passes on… God willing. Every morning on the way to school, my son and I go through this ritual… it’s our daily mantra:

Me: Where were you born?
Him: Canada
Me: What is your heritage?
Him: Jamaica
Me: Where are you ancestors from?
Him: Africa
Me: Who you gonna marry?
Him: A smart, beautiful Black woman like mommy

Be forewarned! I became aware of this movement within the USA to challenge and ban books by and about African Americans. Check it out here. I have most of these books in my personal library, so my son and daughter will have access to them as they grow older. I am not aware that any of these books are apart of the Canadian educational system. However, I have no expectation that they would be. I have every expectation that my children will read everyone of them at home.