PHOTO by ROLAND GLOVER
These Princeton High School and John Witherspoon Middle School students were honored on May 6 for their efforts to promote respect for diversity and to advance the cause of race relations.
Not in Our Town Unity Awards were presented by Carole Krauthamer, fourth from left, to (left to right) Halima-Rakiya Gikandi, Handy Pierre, Sumaiyya Stephens, Isaiah Sigler, Jemima Nelson, and Milosh Popovic.
Congratulations to the six Princeton students who received Not in Our Town Unity Awards on May 6 at a reception at Princeton University’s Carl A. Fields Center. Each student received a certificate; they will also receive a gift at honors assemblies in their schools, scheduled for June 5 at Princeton High School and June 11 at John Witherspoon Middle School.
Not in Our Town aims to speak truth about ‘everyday racism’ and other forms of prejudice and discrimination, says Wilma Solomon, NIOT president. In cooperation with the Princeton Public Library, NIOT presents a monthly discussion series, “Continuing Conversations on Race.” The organization, which consists of representatives from a dozen faith communities, also sponsors book readings, workshops, film series, panels, and anti-racism demonstrations.
“Our hope is that Princeton will continue to grow as a town in which the ideals of friendship, community and pride in diversity prevail,” says Solomon.
The fact that you may honestly believe you are not biased does not free you from unconscious racism. This comes from an article by Toure in Time magazine.
“The racist mind need not hate every black person it encounters, and indeed not hating all may serve as a valuable safety valve, releasing pressure and proving to the mind itself that it is not racist. Few people want to think of themselves as bad or evil,” writes Toure.
At the Stand Against Racism event, at the YWCA Princeton last Friday, those who discussed the documentary “The Princeton Plan” agreed that everyone needs to continue the conversations about how Princeton’s desegregation plan worked. It was 1948 when Princeton desegregated its classrooms by merging two schools — the school in the traditionally black neighborhood and the one on Nassau Street. Children in kindergarten and elementary school went to Nassau Street, and those in junior high went to Quarry Street. Some were jubilant about the plan’s success. Others resented the way it was done.
Continue the conversation at Not in Our Town’s regular “first Monday” session at the Princeton Public Library on Monday, May 7, at 7:30 p.m. With this series, Continuing Conversations on Race, Not in Our Town offers a safe and confidential place to talk about difficult subjects.
The topic planned for this month is very appropriate: tell about your first experience with racial differences. To Shirley Satterfield, this experience came in fourth grade when she left the Quarry Street school to go to the formerly all-white school. The students got along fine, said Satterfield. It was when the teacher replied to — when someone said “Shirley’s blushing” — “Negroes don’t blush.”
When was your first experience with racial differences and how did that affect your life?
Photos above by Leticia Fraga Nadler: Top: Henry Pannell, Shirley Satterfield, and Debra Raines. Below: Ann Yasuhara, Wilma Solomon, Marietta Taylor, Pat Ramirez, Barbara Fox, Larry Spruill.
Photos below left to right: Cynthia Mendez and Kevin Wilkes, Patricia Fernandez-Kelly of Princeton University, and Kathleen Morolda of Cranbury Station Gallery,
Libby Zinman Schwartz shares her reaction to the Stand Against Racism event at the YWCA Princeton — the screening of the documentary The Princeton Plan, about school desegregation in 1948, followed by discussion from Shirley Satterfield and Henry Pannell.
Gather at Palmer Square on Friday, April 27, at 8:15 a.m. and then
walk together to the Princeton YWCA for a showing of an important film, “The Princeton Plan: 50 Years Later” featuring guest speakers Shirley Satterfield and Henry Pannell.
The YWCA Princeton hosts the film screening and discussion from 9 to 10 a.m. at Bramwell House, 59 Paul Robeson Place, Princeton. Light refreshments will be served.
Last year Not in Our Town encouraged merchants to post signs in the windows to support this movement, and many are still on display. For more information on the Stand Against Racism movement — which began here in Princeton, see the Stand Against Racism website