Tuesday, 27 September 2011

UK Schools Ban "Racist" Black Witch Hats

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In what many say is political correctness run amok, British schools have banned black witch hats for children, claiming that they are "racist." So-called diversity and equality experts in the United Kingdom assert that because the wicked witch appears in a black hat, while fairies — typically associated with sweetness and light — are often clad in pale, glistening colors, children are being indoctrinated to believe that all things light or white in color are by nature “good,” while those that are black are inherently “bad.”

The Blaze reports,

Now, to combat that perceived threat, primary school teachers in Britain are allegedly being encouraged by equality advocates to censor fictional children’s characters, eliminating witches’ black pointed hats in favor of white ones, while dressing fairies in dark colors. Proponents of this technique can claim the method will eliminate "racism" in children as young as two.

Unsurprisingly, other innocuous items are also coming under fire. Take for example writing paper. The Telegraph reports:

Another staple of the classroom — white paper — has also been questioned by Anne O’Connor, an early years consultant who advises local authorities on equality and diversity.

Children should be provided with paper other than white to draw on and paints and crayons should come in “the full range of flesh tones,” reflecting the diversity of the human race, according to the former teacher.

O’Connor even insists that teachers should be prepared to answer “black” or “brown” when pupils ask them their favorite color — all in the interest of good race relations.

Many of these bizarre measures come out of a set of guidelines found in the British magazine Nursery World — guidelines which assert that because young children could possess an inclination to be racist, nursery schools therefore have a responsibility to help them “unlearn” those traits.

O’Connor points to a study conducted by Professor Lord Winston, who said he determined that children as young as four can hold racist views. TheTelegraph explains:

In an experiment carried out for the BBC’s Child of our Time series, children were presented with a series of images of faces of men, women, boys or girls. Only one of the faces in each sequence was white.

Children were asked to pick out the face of the person they wanted as their friend and the person they thought would be most likely to get in to trouble.

Almost all white children in the survey associated positive qualities exclusively with photographs of white children or adults. More than half of the black children made the same associations.

In contrast, people with darker faces were viewed as troublemakers.

O’Connor’s program is intended to promote a more positive association with dark colors, a method developed in the United States, according to the Telegraph, as part of a special interest group’s multiculturalism agenda.

O’Connor claims,

This is an incredibly complex subject that can easily become simplified and inaccurately portrayed. There is a tendency to say "here are normal people and here are different people and we have to be kind to those different people," whether it’s race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, age or faith.

People who are feeling defensive can say "well there’s nothing wrong with white paper," but in reality there could be if you don’t see yourself reflected in the things around you. As an early years teacher, the minute you start thinking, "Well actually, if I give everyone green paper, what happens," you have a teaching potential.

O’Connor continues,

People might criticize this as political correctness gone mad. But it is because of political correctness we have moved on enormously. If you think ... we now take it for granted that our buildings and public highways are adapted so people in wheelchairs and with pushchairs can move around. Years ago if you were in a wheelchair, then tough luck. We have completely moved and we wouldn’t have done that without the equality movement.

Responding to these assertions, Margaret Morrisey, spokeswoman for the advocacy group Parents Outloud, observed, “I’m sure these early years experts know their field but they seem to be obsessed about colour and determined to make everyone else obsessed about it too.”

She believes the fears touted by these experts are entirely unfounded:

Not allowing toy witches to wear black seems to me nonsense and in the same vein as those people who have a problem with "Baa Baa Black Sheep" or "The Three Little Pigs." Children just see a sheep in a field, whether it be black, grey, white or beige. I have worked with children for 41 years and I don’t believe I have ever met a two-year-old who was in any way racist or prejudiced.”