EDITOR’S NOTE: This column appears in the December 31, 2004, issue of National Review in Rob Long’s regular “Long View” spot.
TO: All faculty of the Fannie Lou Hamer Learning Resource Center
(formerly known as Jackson County Middle School)
FROM: Vice Principal Edwards
IN RE: Seasonal Issues
After lengthy consultations with members of local civil-rights groups, child psychologists, family counselors, and plaintiffs’ representatives, we have decided on the following guidelines to celebrate the holiday seasons:
1. We will no longer “celebrate” the “holiday” “seasons,” as currently defined. The concept of a “celebration” was deemed offensive and racist to some students and their families (see Runningfeather et al. v. Jackson County School District), who noted, with some historical justification, that to “celebrate” the “birth” of the “savior” is to, essentially, celebrate the instigation of the continental genocide of the indigenous peoples of what is now called “North America,” but which we now at the FLHLRC designate in classroom maps and resource materials as “The Land of the Eagle Goddess” (see my memo “Guidelines for Understanding What We Used To Call Columbus Day” of last autumn for further clarification).
2. To that end, the formerly named “Jackson Holly-Daze Pageant” will now be called the “Fannie Lou Hamer Learning Resource Center Commemoration of the Season.” Please instruct all students to take down the posters and signs that currently line the upper hall and that use the unapproved terminology and replace them with materials that reflect our new understanding. New poster and sign art can be developed and created during Cultural Discovery time–formerly known as “History” (please see my memo “Guidelines for Understanding the Negative Effect of Current History Instruction on Students of Color”)–as a way to introduce students to next month’s unit on “The Violence of Language: Rape, Denial, and Assault in the American Lexicon.”
3. Discussions of god and faith are currently forbidden under the Jackson County School District consent decree. Please see my memo “Many Gods: Okay; One God: Rethink” on this subject, and be aware that all faculty are currently, as of this memo, NOT indemnified by the school district, or by the Fannie Lou Hamer Learning Resource Center, for violations of this court order.
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