Monday, August 26, 2013

Obama to Louisiana Children: ‘You must remain separate and not equal’

By. Kevin P. Chavous

On Saturday, the Obama Administration sued to block Louisiana’s Scholarship Program. This unprecedented and uncalled for action is a direct attack on thousands of low-income children. AFC Press release (

As Adam Emerson, from Fordham summarizes it:


Because, according to the DOJ lawsuit, only a federal judge should be able to allow a poor black child to leave the failing school district. That’s right, it’s not up to the parent, but a federal judge.

As the Time Picayune reported:

This is absurd, it is obscene, and it reeks of political gamesmanship.

Every time a parent raises their hand and wants to offer their child a better educational option, the unions, the education associations and the elitists try to slap them down.

More from the Time Picayune:

In other words, this is another stall and delay tactic from the very same union that opposes educational choice.

The legal action by the Obama Administration is not about providing children with a better education, it is not meant to protect civil rights. No. The actions by this lawsuit are part of the stall and delay tactic that will result in poor kids remaining in failing schools, with little to no options.

And, why? All in the name of desegregation.

The Louisiana Scholarship Program is tailored made for children who come from low-income families and assigned to failing schools.
  • 91 percent of the children participating in the Louisiana Scholarship Program are a minority
  • 86 percent of the children participating in the Louisiana Scholarship Program are African American

Sadly, this political attack on school kids is transparent and it amounts to nothing more than President Obama telling poor and minority kids in Louisiana that they must remain separate and not equal.

It would be too cliché to quote Dr. King’s speech about his children walking hand in hand with a white child to school.

The true King legacy is to expand rights and grow opportunities for all Americans, particularly those of color who were systematically denied the American dream. In taking the action he did against the children of Louisiana, the President does a disservice to that legacy by taking away the promise of a quality education for our most vulnerable citizens.     


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  2. The Justice Department's suit shows an out-of-date mentality towards contemporary American society. Economic segregation is a greater problem today than racial segregation (although the two often go hand-in-hand), and taking away a family's right to seek a better education for their children merely on the basis of their having the misfortune to live in a zip code under a court order is to privilege the government's right to control racial demographics over the family's right to their children's freedom of education, and reinforces their poverty and misery, which Dr. King sympathized with but Mr. Holder ignores.

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