Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Student: Conn. Class Forced to Re-Enact Slavery
http://abcnews.go.com ^ | September 20, 2013 | PAT EATON-ROBB

Posted on 09/20/2013 2:43:29 PM PDT by lowbridge

Middle school-aged students from Connecticut on a field trip last year were forced to re-enact slavery by pretending to be sold at auction and in fields picking cotton, according to a student's complaint. They were told they would be whipped or worse if they ran, and some were asked to dance for their masters.

"I had to hold my head down and could not make contact with the white masters," the 12-year-old student, who is black, said in a statement read to the Hartford school board this week by her father, James Baker of suburban Farmington. "I heard the instructor ask kids behind me to open their mouths so their teeth could be checked. Some were asked to jump up and down."

The girl, who was a seventh-grader at the Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy, asserts that she and her classmates were traumatized and subjected to racial epithets during the November field trip to the Nature's Classroom, an environmental-based outdoor education program in Charlton, Mass., about 45 miles from Hartford. The family has filed a complaint against the school district.

In addition to pretending to be sold at auction and picking cotton, the students participated as slaves in a re-enactment of the Underground Railroad and simulated being on slave ships.

Instructors, acting as the oppressors, told them that while on the ship they would be forced to go to the bathroom on each other and would be thrown overboard if they got sick, the girl said.

"I went into a dark room where I had to sit on my bottom with my knees together," she said in the statement. "My legs fell asleep and were hurting."

(Excerpt) Read more at abcnews.go.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events; US: Connecticut; US: Massachusetts
KEYWORDS: connecticut; liberalism; slavery

1 posted on 09/20/2013 2:43:29 PM PDT by lowbridge
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

I guess they felt the need to keep the hate going. No healing allowed.


2 posted on 09/20/2013 2:46:19 PM PDT by Dalberg-Acton
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge
"This is a re-enactment of a historical event that has relevance to their day-to-day interaction with their peers and classroom teacher," he said. "How do you feel when this is put upon you? How do you think you should feel when it is put upon someone else?"

How would you like to re-enact the crucifixion? See how that feels.

3 posted on 09/20/2013 2:47:08 PM PDT by lowbridge
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

They might as well go all the way and demonstrate rape and beatings. It is essential to providing understanding.


4 posted on 09/20/2013 2:47:36 PM PDT by jimfree (In November 2016 my 13 y/o granddaughter will have more quality exec experience than Barack Obama)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

Just when I think the educrats can’t be any dumber . . .


5 posted on 09/20/2013 2:47:43 PM PDT by colorado tanker
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

Why not practice to accept Islam?


6 posted on 09/20/2013 2:47:55 PM PDT by Paladin2 (h)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

I believe that teacher ought to feel what it’s like to have my mark branded into her skin.


7 posted on 09/20/2013 2:48:33 PM PDT by jimfree (In November 2016 my 13 y/o granddaughter will have more quality exec experience than Barack Obama)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: Dalberg-Acton

Need to re-enact slavery? Then live normally like an American voter under the obama govt.


8 posted on 09/20/2013 2:49:46 PM PDT by max americana (fired liberals in our company after the election, & laughed while they cried (true story))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

Bet they didn’t reenact the slavery of Billy Lee under George Washington. He lived better than most white farmers of his day.


9 posted on 09/20/2013 2:50:11 PM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

Sick.

What next, a reenactment of Auschwitz or Buchenwald?


10 posted on 09/20/2013 2:50:14 PM PDT by LucyT
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

Just keep stirring the hatred and scratch open the wounds.


11 posted on 09/20/2013 2:50:25 PM PDT by muir_redwoods (Don't fire until you see the blue of their helmets)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge
Real slavery going on in Africa and the Middle East and these clowns talk about two hundred years ago.

Why not something more current to portray race relations here in America. Oh I don't know.. maybe force the white kids to stand around and be targets for the popular Knockout game.

12 posted on 09/20/2013 2:50:49 PM PDT by WilliamofCarmichael (If modern America's Man on Horseback is out there, Get on the damn horse already!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

The school administrators will use every chance they have to distort our history.


13 posted on 09/20/2013 2:51:14 PM PDT by Oliviaforever
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

Stupid thing to do, but not racial unless black kids were singled out, which it doesn’t sound like they were.

This is, BTW, historically how all slaves have always been treated. Black slaves shipped across the Atlantic is only one chapter in a very long sad story.


14 posted on 09/20/2013 2:51:52 PM PDT by Sherman Logan (Mark Steyn: "In the Middle East, the enemy of our enemy is also our enemy.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

I think this is a fine idea. As long as the kids understand that the slave-owner is a Democrat.


15 posted on 09/20/2013 2:52:17 PM PDT by marron
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge
"This is a re-enactment of a historical event that has relevance to their day-to-day interaction with their peers and classroom teacher,"

Exactly how is this relevant to their day-to-day interactions in 2013?

16 posted on 09/20/2013 2:53:34 PM PDT by Maceman (Just say "NO" to tyranny.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

How about at least doing a few other things like:
Being a persecuted Christian in the middle east (or in today’s armed forces) and, of course, being tortured and killed (or just told to shut up in the case of the military).
Being a Jew forced into a gas chamber
Being a fetus that gets cut in two with scissors.
The possibilities are endless.


17 posted on 09/20/2013 2:54:00 PM PDT by NewHampshireDuo
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

How about we put the instructor in a small plastic bag, then beat him with shovels...to simulate abortion.


18 posted on 09/20/2013 2:55:15 PM PDT by Huskrrrr
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: jimfree

Sooner or later they probably would


19 posted on 09/20/2013 2:55:24 PM PDT by GeronL
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge
Re-enactments could be okay if it weren't just one topic like this, endowing a fake specialness on people because their ancestors were slaves.

Some of my Russian ancestors were serfs. The Irish ones nearly starved in the potato famine, and lived horrible lives as indentured servants when they got here. One of those darn Germans was terrified that he was going to be hung as a horse thief before he escaped and came to the US. Come to think of it, maybe a better workshop would be "Everybody's got issues. Get over it"

20 posted on 09/20/2013 2:56:04 PM PDT by grania
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: NewHampshireDuo

How about a little girl being married off to a grown man?


21 posted on 09/20/2013 2:59:43 PM PDT by Exit148
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: Sherman Logan

I agree. It does not appear to be racial in nature; all students participated without regard to color. Is it just one family is trying to make a big deal out of it? I would have to hear both sides of the story before I judged this case. If I had a dime for every time someone played the race card because they were looking for a grievance where no justification existed, well... And it certainly would not be the first time a disgruntled problem student or parent whined about an imaginary sight or inconvenience. I want to hear both sides first.


22 posted on 09/20/2013 3:00:30 PM PDT by flying Elvis ("In...War, the errors which proceed from a spirit of benevolence are the worst" Clausewitz.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge
Let me know when school kids are forced to re-enact 9/11...or the London bombings...or Mumbai...or Bali...or the Boston Marathon bombing/
23 posted on 09/20/2013 3:05:31 PM PDT by Gay State Conservative (Osama Obama Care: A Religion That Will Have You On Your Knees!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

I could not help but think of this video after reading about this train wreck of a field trip.

Sharecropping Field Trip (strong language)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=90XLNQXN_74


24 posted on 09/20/2013 3:07:10 PM PDT by VanDeKoik
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

My kids loved Nature’s classroom. Here is what they say about the incident:

Statement Regarding Underground Railroad Activity

For over 41 years Nature’s Classroom has proudly provided quality educational experiences to schools and communities throughout New England and New York. We design curriculum-based programming that coordinates with classroom learning. Nature’s Classroom welcomes and encourages evaluation and feedback on all of our educational activities. Every week dozens of school teachers, administrators and parents and hundreds of students evaluate the classes in which they have observed or taken part. Their comments, opinions and suggestions continuously make us better able to serve our visiting school communities.

The Underground Railroad activity was first offered about 20 years ago. It is one of hundreds of activities that schools can choose to do, or not do, based on their academic goals. Almost 200 schools see it as a valuable extension of their classroom lessons, and request it as one of their many activities. Other schools do not.

At Nature’s Classroom we value diversity and inclusiveness and we strive towards a better understanding of each other. Many of our activities encourage teamwork, working together to build bridges both literally and figuratively. The Underground Railroad activity is no exception.

During the Underground Railroad activity, we ask students to step into the role of an enslaved African trying to escape on the Underground Railroad. Teachers, administrators, and parents from the students’ school act as conductors. They guide groups of students on a walk through the woods. During the journey, the group meets and interacts with Nature’s Classroom teachers playing a variety of different characters. Some teachers represent abolitionists, giving the students a place to rest, food to eat, or hints or tips to travel safely. Some teachers represent bounty hunters, patrollers, or a sheriff, people looking for runaway slaves. This activity includes preparation before the journey and debrief after the journey. Our goal is to introduce students to some of the complexities and difficulties surrounding slavery, understand the courage it took to run, the courage it took to assist those running, and to draw connections between discrimination and prejudice then and discrimination and prejudice today.

In August 2013 Nature’s Classroom first learned that a complaint was filed with the Department of Education regarding the Underground Railroad activity. No details about the complaint were released at that time. Nature’s Classroom began an evaluation of this particular activity. We reached out to teachers and administrators in the almost 200 schools that chose to do the Underground Railroad program last year. We reached out to current and former Nature’s Classroom staff. We carefully reviewed the general feedback provided by the Connecticut Department of Education. We revised the program’s goals and objectives. We redesigned aspects of the Underground Railroad program to better fit the new goals and objectives. And we put in place a long-term plan to reevaluate the design of the entire program within a year. We informed the schools that participate in this program of upcoming changes.

Yesterday we finally learned the details of the complaint from media sources. We were shocked to hear some of the comments included in the complaint. Nature’s Classroom does not condone the use of the n-word. We would have taken immediate disciplinary action, including dismissal, had we known of this concern. We began an investigation into the specific complaints yesterday. This investigation is ongoing, and we can share the following information at this time:

This school chose to do the Underground Railroad activity, as they have chosen to do for over 5 years.

Students are always able to remove themselves from the activity, or choose not to participate in the activity.

Students were never chased through the woods. They were, however, led walking through the woods by teachers from their school that acted as conductors. These conductors supervised the students. They supervised the student’s interactions with Nature’s Classroom teachers.

The teachers from the school that acted as conductors had the following feedback on the program: “We had a very positive experience with [the] Underground Railroad.” They did not bring up any concerns or mention any behavior as inappropriate.

During staff training, Nature’s Classroom teachers have conversations about appropriate and inappropriate language during this activity. This particular staff had a very specific conversation about never using the n-word.

No Nature’s Classroom teacher that was present that night, that we have been able to question so far, reports using or hearing the use of the n-word at any point during their careers as Nature’s Classroom teachers.

If this complaint does turn out to be valid, we offer our sincerest apologies for the comments made. Our intention is to empower students to be positive leaders in the face of discrimination, prejudice and bullying in their own lives today. The reaction of this particular child and her family are clearly not in line with our goals for the activity, and we are deeply sorry that this was their experience.

Dr. John G. Santos

Executive Director

Nature’s Classroom

http://www.naturesclassroom.org/Underground_Railroad_Statement.html


25 posted on 09/20/2013 3:07:24 PM PDT by Raycpa
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge; Allegra; big'ol_freeper; Lil'freeper; TrueKnightGalahad; Cincinatus' Wife; ...
Re: Middle school-aged students from Connecticut on a field trip last year were forced to re-enact slavery

CNN Breaking News followup, over at Hartford Magnet Trinity College Senior Academy... junior and sophomore students were told to kill their Jewish classmates and as homework, they were to burn the Jew's bodies in their home kitchen ovens and bring back the ashes for further review and grading--

President Obama commented at his daily post golfing swim, saying, "Praise Allah, they did not... insult any Moslems or desecrate the Islamic religion!"

This has been CNN Breaking News... Kent Brockmann reporting--

26 posted on 09/20/2013 3:07:42 PM PDT by Bender2 ("I've got a twisted sense of humor, and everything amuses me." RAH Beyond this Horizon)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Bender2

lol


27 posted on 09/20/2013 3:09:47 PM PDT by GeronL
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 26 | View Replies]

To: Raycpa

Maybe one of their other programs is about brothels


28 posted on 09/20/2013 3:12:12 PM PDT by GeronL
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

Looks more like creepy, controlling “educators” using children to act out their own bondage fantasies.


29 posted on 09/20/2013 3:16:41 PM PDT by Ezekiel (The Obama-nation began with the Inauguration of Desolation.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Ezekiel

That is probably not far from the truth.

How close is this to one of the Marxist summer camps they run in this country?


30 posted on 09/20/2013 3:18:17 PM PDT by GeronL
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: Exit148
How about a little girl being married off to a grown man?

Good addition to the list.

31 posted on 09/20/2013 3:19:37 PM PDT by NewHampshireDuo
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

Were there any black kids in the class? Were they slaves too, or just masters (to spare their sensitivities)?


32 posted on 09/20/2013 3:38:06 PM PDT by Pearls Before Swine
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

Will they include blacks selling other blacks into slavery?


33 posted on 09/20/2013 3:48:58 PM PDT by CodeToad (Liberals are bloodsucking ticks. We need to light the matchstick to burn them off. -786 +969)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: GeronL
Marxist summer camps

Well, aren't year-round schools gaining in popularity? Or at least a lot of schools or other govt. entities run their own Camp Commie summer camps. Defacto slave compounds even without the weirdo role-playing stuff.

34 posted on 09/20/2013 3:50:52 PM PDT by Ezekiel (The Obama-nation began with the Inauguration of Desolation.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge

Sounds to me like some folks have a fat civil rights lawsuit on their hands for violations of the 14th amendment. Where are all the scumbag lawyers when they can actually do something useful?


35 posted on 09/20/2013 4:32:48 PM PDT by Boogieman
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: lowbridge
Hey this is series history.

Congressman documents hundreds of millions of blacks thrown overboard by slave trade

Internet source: "A Democratic socialist from New York City, Owens stated in a 1995 speech on the House floor that during the African slave trade more than 200,000,000 people were thrown over the sides of the slave ships which carried them across the Atlantic, permanently disrupting the ecology and causing sharks to follow any and all ships since the trade was stopped in the 1850's. This figure worked out to be 152 slaves taken aboard nine ships per day for 200 years to get the total amount of slaves thrown overboard. After reworking his absurd figure down to 100,000,000 slaves, Owens' claim was picked up by ABC News, which reported the claim as 'fact'."

36 posted on 09/20/2013 4:57:20 PM PDT by WilliamofCarmichael (If modern America's Man on Horseback is out there, Get on the damn horse already!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson