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Home : 2002 : Dec : 6

    Intolerance of ignorance
    By Amber J.

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    I agree with you: the people who are responding to Tara's comments are intolerant - but in the best possible way! Yes, Tara made a legitimate call for ideas, and I don't think it's fair to attack her personally. And many people did respond with valid ideas. But this is a teacher discussion board - why shouldn't we be intolerant, agitated, and speak up when someone is claiming an ignorance of, fear of and a distaste for the reality in which a majority of the world's children live in (i.e., poverty, violence, abuse, drug and alcohol addiction, coming to school hungry every morning, dealing with racism and pressure to learn a new language). How can bringing up these issues be a defense of ignorance?

    We don't even need to bring politics into this discussion or to attack liberal, progressive teachers (I admit, I am one of those). The point is that ALL children (minority or not) need teachers who believe that ALL children are worthy of a good education. The original poster seemed fearful of children of a different background or who speak a language different from hers (talking about the students' family backgrounds, how she feels unsafe around Hispanic students, and saying something like "why don't they just learn English, then?", and that it's normal to have fears of teaching "just Hispanic children"). With that attitude, she'll likely but pass on intolerance to those she teaches - whether by the things she teaches directly, through her implicit attitude or by omission.


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