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Debate Score:129
Arguments:77
Total Votes:149
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 Race in education (72)

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Race in education

Question: do we talk about race too much in school?
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5 points

Race in education, what a tricky subject or is it? Education is accessing and receiving knowledge. Plainly put, we learn from what we are taught and what we do in the past. History is one of the greatest teachers. It is essential that we learn history for what it is. For this reason, I believe race is important to discuss in the classroom. The discussion about whether it should be an open discussion about race in general or race in the education system is purely a school curriculum decision. However, I do feel that we can't ignore history. We can't destroy history or change it to make people feel better about what happened in the past. Race should be included in our discussion during the school day. However the line should be made that it is not a argument, merely a talking point. We must learn in order to grow and excluding what happened 150 years ago will not benefit anything but ignorance. In the words of Socrates, "There is only one good, knowledge and one evil, ignorance."

2 points

"Plainly put, we learn from what we are taught and what we do in the past. History is one of the greatest teachers. It is essential that we learn history for what it is." I agree with everything in your statement but this part especially stuck out to me. It is important to talk about history for all that it was and the impact it continues to have on modern society. If we are not educated fully on history, but more specifically the history of our country, then we are doomed to repeat it. I hope future generations can be educated even more thoroughly than we have been. Without an increase in knowledge in each passing society the world will collapse around us. A lack of education is a step that speeds up the inevitable failure of modern society.

Miocene(707) Disputed
1 point

So, every respondent to this thread joined just one hour ago!

WHO DO YOU THINK YOU'RE KIDDING''?

4 points

I do not think we talk enough about race. We barely brush over the edge of how deep slavery and race runs into our country's background. Everyone knows the basic facts that race divided the country, but do we really know how much everyone was affected? We have some of the same issues that were happening during the past such as racism, and schools are not even truly going into depth on the topic. Many people think that it is okay to say words that are racist in nature because they do not truly understand all the historical aspects and context that go along with it. It is preached that everyone is equal so why are we learning more about the white people of the past and not more about the genocides and the past of the Native Americans or the African Americans? We should to know how their past shaped our country as a whole. A person can never know the full truth of how America was shaped into what it is today if they do not know or are not taught in the classroom about the many races. Not every race has the same history.

1 point

I completely agree with you. Americans cannot learn from our country's past mistakes without being educated on them.

4 points

Race in education is a bit of a complex topic. It is too often talked about in a way that is very white-washed and tries to gloss over the atrocities committed by the settlers and early colonies. Simultaneously it is not talked about enough. Through all thirteen years I have spent in the public school systems I could count on my fingers how many times I have read accounts of historical events by BIPOC. Of course I must acknowledge that in instances like slavery they could not read or write.

A common excuse I've been given by teachers is "well x group didn't speak English." I don't see this as a valid excuse. It is the 21st century there are many translators for almost every language that has existed and if not a human one then there is almost surely an AI for it. The problem lies in the fact that accounts of these events by BIPOC are not as easily accessible. That is a problem in and of itself. It isn't that they don't exist they simply aren't published or publicized the way European accounts of the same events are. I understand that teachers are working with the curriculum they are given and have lives of their own. I make these statements not as a way to bash my past or present history teachers but rather to point out a flaw in the education system. Why is it that atrocities committed by white people are often made out to be less horrible than they were? Why are we offered excuses for those behaviors? Why are BIPOC who have committed similar behaviors heavily demonized if the curriculum is willing to gloss over those things for white people? Those a re just a few questions off the top of my head. If I had more time to work on this I would have many more and could delve much deeper into this issue.

Don't get my intentions wrong. I do not think those things are any more acceptable if done by BIPOC. I am simply asking why they aren't portrayed in the same light. More than anything I hope this offers food for thought to those willing to listen. I know some of you most likely disagree with everything I've said and that's fine we can have different opinions. My intention isn't to offend but rather to point out what I perceive as a massive flaw in our education. It is not the fault of the teachers but rather of the system.

1 point

This was really well written and I agree with everything you said. Our education system has a lot of issues and the discussion on race is one of the largest.

1 point

I agree. The jist that most people take out of history classes involving race is "white people wanted to keep their slaves so we could make money" and "the KKK is a racist group from the Civil Rights movement." We don't learn a lot about how it relates to today. We generally hear "and it still exists today," but we don't learn about how it has created social strata and uneven racial poverty distribution.

3 points

Students should be fully informed about topics involving race in education. It's not the federal government's place to regulate what topics are not allowed to be taught in education. If students are not educated about topics that are prevalent in our country, they will be unable to form their own opinions. Topics such as slavery and civil rights are not "too left wing" to be banned from being taught in schools, and therefore should be taught to students in school.

1 point

I completely agree. 10/10. I believe the president or any other figure in the position of power should not be able to pick and choose what parts of history students should learn. A problem cannot be thoroughly addressed if a person is not fully aware of what the problem really is.

1 point

It is vital for teenagers to began understanding information for themselves and try to form their own opinions. Race plays a big part in the majority of discussions in our current world. Therefore, I agree students should be informed about topics involving race in education.

1 point

I agree. The government should not have a say in regulating what students should be educated on, especially with things like race. Well said!

2 points

Not only do we not talk too much about race in education (specifically history), but we do not talk about it enough. When most people first hear this debate topic, they immediately assume systemic racism against black people. While this is certainly encompassed by the topic, it is not the only aspect. Never, in any of my history classes, has the genocide of Native Americans ever been talked about. White Europeans did not simply "come to America and take their land", they essentially wiped out an entire race. Also, systematic racism is taught in schools as a thing of the past, but it is still very much in the present.

3 points

I agree with you: we do not talk about race enough in school. In history, the only racial issues we discussed heavily have been about civil rights, not about Native Americans. We definitely need to do a better job of informing the younger citizens of our country about the horrible events that occurred to Native Americans and POC in our country so that we can grow as a country from those events. I also think that students need to be informed about systematic racism in our country...terms such as that are not defined enough to students when they are still present in society today.

1 point

I agree with you 100%, there is a lot of history that needs to be talked about dealing with Native Americans, they have been through so much and had a lot taken from them.

1 point

I completely agree with you. Racism can be experienced by any one person in our society. That only makes the problem 100x worse. How can we ignore this huge problem?

miniactivist(11) Disputed
1 point

I see where you are coming from, but I feel that you have slightly misinterpreted what I said. I do not believe that racism can be experienced by any one person in our society. I believe that racism can only be experience by marginalized groups in our society. So, there is no such thing as "reverse racism" against white people.

1 point

We do not overly talk about race in schools. To overcome a problem you must have knowledge on the subject and be able to identify why it is a problem and how to fix it. This applies to any problem, and in this situation it is racial injustice. Students must be educated on the problems that this country has had with racism even more than what is currently being taught, because it is obviously still a problem today. We still have not managed to fix the problem of racial injustice, so it is necessary to make students aware of the problems we faced in the past, as well as what we continue to struggle with today.

Drunken-Con(16) Clarified
0 points

"Not only do we not talk too much about race in education..." I agree with most of what you say but I disagree on the part about the Native Americans. There have been many history classes that discuss the massacres that were committed by colonial Americans against Indians and how the diseases brought spread like wildfire. The Trail of Tears is one of the most atrocious acts committed in American history and it has been discussed in every history class that I've ever been in. It may not have been as in depth as it should but I know that we have at least covered the basics of the atrocities committed against Native Americans.

miniactivist(11) Disputed
3 points

We do talk about the "massacre" of Native Americans, but we do not recognize the scale of it. In Germany, the holocaust is openly recognized as a genocide. In America, we say that we "massacred" the Native Americans, which is on a much smaller scale than genocide. There are no major museums to memorialize this, and Americans as a whole do not recognize what they have done. Other countries that have committed genocide recognize this much more, and actively work to show their regret and sorrow.

chunli(8) Disputed
2 points

Many History classes? We rarely talk about Native Americans here at Gulfport High in my opinion

2 points

Donald Trump claims that schools are indoctrinating students into thinking that America is racist and that the school system focuses too much on the faults of America instead of its “freedoms”, which is so far from the truth. We don’t talk enough about racism. We don’t talk enough about what we did to the Native Americans and the Trail of Tears. I didn’t learn about Emmett Till until 8th grade. I admit that it is a violent and upsetting story so maybe it should be told to an older audience, but there are so many more out there like Emmett Till that we don’t hear about at all. I think it is VERY important to learn about America’s faults and what America has done wrong. The fact that Trump won’t own up to America’s faults as an American says something about him I think. We should be taught more about America’s faults because this generation is full of America’s next leaders and we need to learn from our mistakes in order to further improve our country. Denying, avoiding and even covering up our mistakes achieves nothing. Trump claims that learning about these things creates shame in us over our country’s actions but the thing is we absolutely should be ashamed of what we’ve done. Germany isn’t full of bad people anymore. There are probably some bad apples but Germany has normal people there just like us. Does Trump think that they aren’t ashamed of their history? Does he think that they don’t learn about it in school and learn from their wrongdoings?

LILBUGGY Clarified
2 points

I see what you're saying @katemfanacct but the question was do we talk about race too much in school, not racism. i just think that we focus so much on each others race instead of what is really important. If we focus on race that is what will come out, nothing but opinions on others race, instead of the person they are. we do need to talk about Americas faults so we can try to make it better, but the more we talk about race and racism the bigger the problem gets.

AP-25 Disputed
4 points

Talking about race and racism are not interchangeable but the two are directly related. I 100% agree with @katemfanacct. When someone asks you how your race affects the way people interact with you, what comes to mind? Maybe its different for people of different backgrounds, but when someone asks a black student how their race affects the way some of their white counterparts treats them, what do you think comes to mind?

2 points

No, how can you talk to much about something in school, a place where you're supposed to be educated on these matters? Talking about America's past and flaws doesn't make America a bad country or make you unpatriotic. It's just called being educated to help prevent the same mistakes from being made twice. What you choose to do with this information and how you let it affect your views on the country is your business, but we all have a right to this knowledge. That's the education systems job, to educate you on information and then allow you to form your own opinions and beliefs based on the information.

2 points

I agree completely with your argument that everyone should know all the facts in school. Including real-world, social issues. This is exactly what school should be like.

2 points

To a certain point, race is a good thing in education. We shouldn't lie to our children in American history about the racism this country has had in its past and the systematic racism that continues to divide our country. We should not, however, talk so much about it that people get put down or get their feelings hurt.

chunli(8) Clarified
2 points

Feelings hurt? The people that dealt that were being discriminated against were truly hurt also. We should talk about everything even if it hurt some people feelings, but they have to realize that a lot of people were hurt back then, but I agree with everything else you said.

miniactivist(11) Clarified
1 point

What do you mean that we should not talk about it so much that people get their feelings hurt? Surely the only people offended by others saying that racism is bad are the racist ones.

bittahknight(3) Disputed
0 points

Okay as bad as racism is it will never be completely rid out. There will always be racists for the rest of time. There will always be racists in schools. I'm saying the more we talk about race the more the racists will have the opportunity to show their true colors and hurt other people's feelings.

AP-25 Disputed
1 point

Protecting the feelings of people or addressing a very prominent problem... what's more important?

Zooweemama(1) Disputed
1 point

I feel we should discuss race in education just as we should discuss all topics in social studies. Equally. I feel its a very important topic and we learn this part in history so we can try to teach our kids to not be racist. I feel we've talked about slavery a lot in school but what we are arguing is race. Slavery on the other hand is discussed in depth from the time we are little as soon as kindergarten we begin to learn the basics of it. We don't discuss race very much and I think racism starts at home of course and that's where it really should be talked about.

1 point

People had to go through years and years of "hurt feelings" to get basic rights in our country just because of their race. I agree that some conversations have the potential to get uncomfortable, but that is necessary for people to state their opinions and learn from others.

2 points

No, I personally think that we don't talk about race too much in schools. We can't go back and change what happened back then, so we have to make sure that our future is better than the past and I think talking about history will help with that. Also, our history was mostly about race; disc imitation, segregation, slavery, and etc. And we can't just let that go and pretend that it didn't happened, we need to know how far we came along in history with race.

2 points

I agree, we cannot change the past, we can only learn and grow from our history.

2 points

I agree with you because it is important to better oneself from past mistakes

2 points

Are we talking about race enough? When will there be enough talking and more doing?

The main problem about talking about race in schools is that it makes people uncomfortable. When people get uncomfortable, tensions begin to rise and problems arise. I believe the key to finding a settle place in talking about race in school is to learn how to hold true to what we believe and experience as the truth while also holding what others believe and have experienced as truth.

When approaching a problem, a person should want to know all that they can know and be as knowledgeable as possible on the subject. THEN, that person acts to fix the problem. FINALLY, steps are taken to prevent the problem from happening again.

So, not talking about race enough will hinder the process of fixing the broken social connections within our country.

2 points

I support you 100%. We need to know everything we can to fix what is happening.

2 points

I agree with you when you said "So, not talking about race enough will hinder the process of fixing the broken social connections within our country." We cannot grow as a country without being educated. Americans cannot form their own opinions on a topic if they are not informed about every aspect of it. Learning leads to growth in a country. Americans should be taught about racism in schools so they can form their own opinions and contribute to a change in the country.

2 points

NO! Since middle school I've noticed that we don't talk about anything dealing with race because they think it would make others uncomfortable. But now that i'm in high school i realized how segregated everything is. For example in the cafeteria each race has a certain place they sit. And I don't think others realized that but I was really uncomfortable having to decide if I wanted to sit with my race or with other people.

I agree with you. Our society is still largely segregated today. And it isn't just highschool, it is all throughout life. According to a study done by the National Center for Biotechnology Information, three quarters of American adults do not have a close friend of a different race.

2 points

I don't think we talk enough about race in schools. Throughout school we learn the same information and it gets repetitive. Schools will sometimes even try to get by without teaching their students the necessary things that has happened in this country.

2 points

Maybe we can address what we talk about when we talk about race in school?

Do students know anything about convict leasing? The roots of disenfranchisement laws? Stokely Charmichael? Ralph Abernathy? Anything written by MKL about poverty and war instead of race? The 1964 Democratic National Convention? Busing in Boston in the 80's? etc., etc., etc.....lynching, Ida B. Wells, the history of Parchman Penitentary....??

How many times do kids hear "I have a dream" versus other parts of the history of race in America?

2 points

This is a good point, and it relates back to @Dexy 's claim that we read the I Have a Dream speech too often. It is the only piece of literature based on race that I can remember reading with the exception of Letter from Birmingham Jail.

Exactly. Race needs to be expanded on in school, and we need to talk about deeper things than just the most popular ones.

1 point

We have gone over MLK's "I Have a Dream" and "Letters from Birmingham Jail," and how they pertain to race. This has consumed the lessons of History, as well as English classes. We analyze, in depth, the speeches in English and talked about the many injustices in all History classes. We do talk about race a lot in school, however we do not go in depth into issues like convict leasing and disenfranchisement laws. I don't even know what those are.

1 point

I agree 100% with you. I have no idea what those other stuff are, but I have read many times "I Have a Dream".

Dexy(3) Disputed
1 point

The point here that Trump is making is that the current curriculum has elaborated on the same race-related topics from a wide range of the entire average grade school career. The problem is not necessarily that we are only being taught race-related situations, it's that the curriculum constantly emphasizes the same events year after year. In my view, it wouldn't be a problem if all the topics stated in your claim were actually taught, but the reality is that we have legitimately been taught "I have a dream" too much for it to be appropriate. What I want as a student is to learn the wide variety of events and understand ALL of our history to a full capacity. Our current curriculum has not and will not accomplish that need

1 point

That was the one good point someone else who was mentioned above somewhere made, we go over the "I have a dream" speech so much rather than other parts of the CRM.

1 point

From my understanding, president Trump’s claim is true. From as far as I can remember, critical analysis of anything in an English or history class has been based around something by an abolitionist or a civil rights activist. Not that it’s wrong but I can tell you nothing about the Spanish American War because it hasn’t been imprinted in my brain. I can tell you nothing about the War of 1812 because I’ve probably gone over once in all my years of school. I can tell you the bare minimum of our first world conflict because the bare minimum is all I’ve had to know. And at the same time, I can’t tell you how many of my English classes in the past have given me a copy of the “I have a dream speech” by Martin Luther King Jr. given during his famous march on Washington in the year 1963 for us to annotate and analyze the aesthetic and purpose of this monumental movement in our history. Trump is not wrong, and it’s hypocritical to say that his curriculum is an attempt at suppressing our history, because all I’ve ever been taught is a suppression of everything in comparison to the greatest imperfection of our country.

katemfanacct Disputed
2 points

I agree that we do talk about MLK's speech a good bit, but it is because racism and the civil rights movement are such important parts of our history. However, I think we talk about the War of 1812 and the Spanish American War a good bit and I think we talked about those subjects in class an appropriate amount. The War of 1812 was between Britain and France and America over independence, and the Spanish American War was sparked over an explosion and America's support of the Cubans.

kmccormick22(7) Disputed
1 point

While I understand your viewpoint, learning how race influences things is important to grasp during school. Race is a factor in 90% of the history we learn. While slavery is purely motivated by race, loads of other historic events are influenced by racial discussions and racial motivations. In order to understand history, such as the War of 1812 or the Spanish American War as you mentioned above, we cannot exclude the talking of race and tension caused by it during these times.

chunli(8) Disputed
1 point

I agree with on you some parts, but racism is the most important historical piece in America. Yes we should talk about more things, but we should never talk stop talking about race. Also, it is the greatest imperfection, but we can't help that, all we can do and make sure it doesn't happen again.

1 point

Race is very important in schools

Learning from one's flaws is very important. I think it is very important to learn about race in schools. There are many stories of unity that are taught through these stories. Not only is it important for the country to learn about these hardships, it is important as individuals to learn about it. These stories are not just about race, they are about Americans coming together to help fellow Americans in times of need. If anything that shows more patriotism than anything. This curriculum being taught in schools is essential and I think it will bring people together aside from their differences in skin color, economic, or social status. It would be a great thing for the country. I am a Republican but that doesn't mean that I have to agree with President Trump all the time. Like I said earlier it is important to see flaws and better yourself from them.

1 point

The study of race and America's past is very important in today's school system. If Trump were to take out this aspect of education, many children would not know of the hardships of slavery and they would have an idealistic view of our country. This would keep the new generations from knowing about what is referred to as "America's Greatest Shame". While they would be shielded from America's wrongs in the past, they would also not know about the strength that it took for America to overcome this obstacle. Thus, the study of race in this country is a very good thing because it gives reasoning to why things are the way they are, and it shows how America is not perfect.

There's a Black Lives Matter protest this Saturday at 5:00 p.m. at Jones Park! Show up and be a part of history, not just watching it (even if its to anti-protest, if that's your jam).

1 point

Life is one very big test. There are the fun parts, there are the challenges, and there are the plain boring parts. There is no way that a person can take a test and be successful at taking that test if you do not learn the material. How can you successfully get through life if you are not informed. Everything affects everybody, directly or indirectly.

1 point

No.

I think the only reason this opinion exists is because we have started talking more about racial history in school. For example, my mom went to school in Clarksdale, Mississippi. She was born in 1977. She learned that the Civil War was solely based on economics, and slavery was not a huge part of it. There are people in my [very] extended family that were members of the Daughters of the Confederacy. They were known for creating the “heritage, not hate!” slogan, and they went around spreading southern pride, rewriting textbooks, and banning books that made the south look bad. They had an after school incentive program called the Children of the Confederacy. Kids got rewarded for learning confederate “history,” and they took “patriotic” field trips to honor the confederacy. It is not as widespread as it was, but it still exists today. We talk about race in school because it is relevant.

Our school is majority minority and majority low-income. Yet, my AP/Honors classes have rarely had black kids or kids on free/reduced lunch, and that should be 50% of us, at least. If people don’t recognize the effects of systematic racism or learn about them in school, we don’t talk about race enough. Have you ever heard the saying, “The first step to fixing a problem is acknowledging that you have a problem”? We can’t fix the racial divisions and strata in our country unless we acknowledge it and learn about what causes it.

1 point

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-4 points
katemfanacct Disputed
4 points

Can you give an example of a time we talked about race that was unnecessary?

chunli(8) Disputed
3 points

I agree with you when you said school should be a place where we learn about given subjects and that includes history, we can't just let history go.

lilszkol(3) Disputed
3 points

I see where you're coming from and you're right we should be learning about the given subjects, but with history being one of the 4 core subjects, race has to come up. Not does it have to come up, but with it being such a huge part of not only American history, but world history too, shouldn't we talk about it a lot? Honestly we don't even cover half of history's racism. So, I agree with us needing to fully cover our given subjects, meaning we should be discussing race pretty heavily throughout the year in at least history.

hopesimmons(6) Disputed
3 points

Race is important to discuss so that Americans can be informed about the injustices that different races have faced in the past. If people are misinformed or even uninformed, how can we grow as a country? Students should learn about race because it is a part of American history.

2 points

i agree. People were claimed to be created as equal but were not treated as such. As a result I feel that Race should be talked about more in depth as to understand the injustices that history has contained.

miniactivist(11) Disputed
2 points

When Donald Trump said we learn too much about race in school, he was specifically referring to history. History is where we learn about what happened in our nation's past. A big part of that past is systematic racism. You are absolutely right, race should not matter. But sadly it does. It matters because black people are disproportionately harmed and killed by the police. It matters because when I go to Black Lives Matter protests, I am called a n-word lover and my black friends are called n-words. Ideally, race would not matter. But in our society it must matter until everyone is treated equally.

Tame(5) Disputed
2 points

Race is definitely important to talk about in schools. There was a time were everyone was not seen as equal and its important that we talk about. In order to understand how things are in today's society we have to look at how it was in the past.

1 point

This is important to think about because people were not always treated the same and it is important that we address that. We scrape the bare minimum of what needs to be known, but we do not go in depth as to how these inustices shaped the country to what we are experiencing now.

LeafLotus(19) Disputed
2 points

I disagree, I think race is a very important thing to talk about so that people can understand the background and the reasoning behind why things are the way they are. Also, I don't think that talking about it among peers should count as talking about it in school. Trump specifically talks about how we talk about it too much in history.

kmccormick22(7) Disputed
2 points

Everyone is equal under the law specifically; however, the reason we are equal is because we struggled through our race issues and didn't ignore them. When we ignore problems they don't go away. While I understand, school is a place to learn and some discussions are not needed to understand the topics; in those classes that warrant discussion we must be able to speak about race and our history.

eddiebae(7) Disputed
1 point

If everyone is made equal, why not give every race the same respect and talk about their history not just a white person's? Not every race has the same history so how do we group them all together?

Intellectual(6) Disputed
1 point

You are correct in saying that everyone in America is supposed to be equal. Key word being "supposed." We are all supposed to have the same opportunity to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, in our founders own words. Yet, in our own state, the median income distribution between black and white households has black households down by $17,000, with a graph grotesquely skewed towards the lowest income distribution for black families. Take some time and check out http://mississippi.edu/urc/downloads/africanamerican_economic.pdf ! It has a lot of interesting graphics and stats about our state that not a lot of people recognize. We can't fix the issues in less we learn about them. We can't resolve a problem if we don't know we have it, and we can't know we have it unless we learn about it.

1 point

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