So. a few weeks ago some students at Sale College (Victoria Australia) decided Black-face would be a good idea for their muck-up day costume (The Jamaican Bob-Sled team from Cool Runnings)
Apparently the didn’t get the memo that blackface, a kind of “performance art” used to racially target and dehumanize African American’s during a time of slavery and apartheid isn’t. funny.
So with their misguided ideas about what is and isn’t racist they headed along to there muck up day, where their teachers promptly stopped them in their tracks and told them to go wash their faces.
WAIT no, sorry. that’s how the teachers present should have reacted, instead there was total inaction. nothing was said, the students carried on and while on school grounds, at a school event, wore their black-face costume.
Then, on November 19th, at the Sale College Valedictory the students involved were awarded “Best Costume”. That’s right, the school literally gave an award to *the best black-face*.
Despite complaints on the night of the Valedictory and since, the school has not responded or reacted to backlash over the incident, instead student in greater and greater numbers have jumped to the defence of the boys who took part in the black-face, with such timeless classics as “they didn’t mean it in an offensive way, it wasn’t racist” “you’re just looking to be offended” “i know a black person who is ok with it” “i know black people” and my personal favourite; “you’re racist for thinking this costume is offensive”
Shall we see the offending costume?
(TW: LINK CONTAINS IMAGE OF BLACKFACE)
now it’s been a few years since i’ve watched cool runnings, but I’m pretty sure there weren’t even 5 jamaican bob-sledders. ah INACCURATE racism.
So now we need your help!
we are writing letters to Sale College to let them know that it is not ok! Not ok to let students do blackface and not ok to give students an award for blackface,
you can write a letter too, as long or as short as you like.
our terms are these:
1. We want a full apology to be made on behalf of the staff of sale college for allowing blackface to occur at a Sale College event and for awards to be given to the students involved; apology to be made in the school newsletter before the end of school term 2013
2. A further apology to be made to the student body in the form of assembly, were it will be made clear that Sale College staff will never again let this slide and any student who attempts to dress in blackface will not only not be receiving awards, but will be facing serious consequences.
Though you are welcome to post your letters directly to Sale College*, we are actually booking a meeting with the principal, where we will sit down with him, explain our issue with the actions of the students and the following actions of the staff and to further explain our expectations and terms.
We feel this is important because as former Sale College students we have experienced this same principal worming his way out of responsibility and not fully listening to students and we feel a large stack of physical letters would really make an impact, rather than just a bunch of emails that can be marked as spam and ignored.
Please post your letter to
R C K
PO Box 9323
or if postage is not an option/too expensive please email me your letter and i will print it to take to the principal
Please get your letter to me ASAP/Thursday December 5th 2013 because we want the apologies to be made before the end of school year
last day of term is December 20th and we hope to have our meeting with the principal on the 6th
Please reblog and circulate this as much as possible!
We want letters from anyone and everyone, letting Sale College that black-face is not ok!
We want them to know how far and how quickly news that Sale College is condoning and supporting black-face is spreading and that they need to do something really quickly.
As former Sale College students we are deeply hurt and offended that our school would do this and condone such behaviours, this hurts Sale College, this hurts the wider Sale community and this hurts Sale College students past, present and future.
resources as to why black-face is not ok (as if we have to prove this):