Outrage: Detroit school district throws out valuable Black History Books, artifacts
By Black Blue Dogs
The emergency situation in Detroit has already gotten criticism from residents, who feel that the predominantly Black city has been taken over by those seeking to pillage and control the Black community. Now, the situation has been worsened by what an emergency manager is saying was a simple (yet costly) mistake.
Emergency manager for the finances of Highland Park High School, Donald Weatherspoon, has admitted that workers inadvertently threw scores of material, including Black History books and films, into dumpsters. Much of the material was limited edition and irreplaceable, causing deep concern among those who value Black History. Weatherspoon says that the district was able to recover most of the materials, but community residents aren’t so sure.
Residents claim that they found as many as 1,000 pieces of material on their own, taking credibility away from the district’s claims that the situation caused little harm to the important and valuable information.
The materials that have been uncovered are being sorted out for their historical value. Some will go to a library and others would go to museums. But Weatherspoon says that none of the material will be sold. But residents are upset that the district is not going to keep any of the materials itself.
“This speaks to a larger issue, a disinvestment in urban areas,” said Rodney Patrick, Highland Park, Mich., city councilman.
Some of the information also included tax and bank records.
Highland Park Board Vice President Debra Humphrey says that this was probably not done in error.
“I can’t let you sit here and say this was a mistake,” said Humphrey.
The residents feel that because the district can’t afford to keep the materials, students are being denied access to valuable pieces of Black History. The question to ask is whether or not this decision would be different if they were white kids in the suburbs, with plenty of wealth deriving from hundreds of years of white privilege.
“I remembered that there were some exclusive books there, especially books written by classical African-American authors,” said Earl Wheeler, former City Council president.
What do you think? Do schools value Black history?