As a head’s up, when an individual of African descent says they don’t want to be called an “African-American,” calling them a “n*gger” won’t win any new friends. WMAQ reports that an Illinois substitute teacher was fired this week following an outburst during which she allegedly referred to two students as “n*ggers” because they objected to being called African-American.
The two eighth grade girls who were on the receiving end, Mae Thompson and Zaria Daniel, told WMAQ that they were working in a social studies group with two peers at Jay Stream Middle School when the substitute referred to them as “African-American.”
Thompson recalled that “All four of us that were sitting there got offended because none of us are from Africa,” adding that she was Jamaican. So they asked if the sub could not call them that.
I don’t know the context and I don’t care to learn. When someone asks you not to call them something, don’t call them that thing. It’s not rocket science, and it’s not “political correctness.” This is basic socialization. Confusing the two says more about you than it does the state of society.
Of course, the teacher never got that memo, apparently; she continued to call the students than, telling them that “It’s the politically correct term” and then added that “Well, back then you guys would be considered the N-word.”
When Thompson and Daniel were understandably shocked and “almost moved to tears,” the sub pressed on, adding that “Well, back then that’s what African-Americans were called.” Thanks for that history lesson, chief, but I can fully attest that word hasn’t stayed “back then” and is alive and well “right now.” You’d be surprised (or not) how fluent in racist terminology White people are when they think nobody is looking.
And how they panic and stumble over themselves to justify it when called out.
The teacher continued referring to them as n*igger throughout the rest of the class period, which spanned 80-minutes. She also reported referred to them as slaves, and one student left the room crying.
The school district confirmed that WMAQ that the sub was interviewed and owned up to everything she’d said. A district spokeswoman confirmed that the sub would not be working for the school again.
Meanwhile, Thompson’s mother, Shayna, planned to file a report with the police, and to find out if the teacher could be charged with disorderly conduct or a hate crime. She told WMAQ that, “After the shock and hurt, I’m angry. It’s a new world, and the people of the past that still hang onto hatred and bigotry don’t belong in this world anymore.”
You can watch the report below: