February 9, 2012
Ignorant, Stupid, and Poor!
Did I get your attention? Good! I’m going to go a bit out of character here and into a bit of a rant. My colleague, Maegan, is right. The Success by 6 findings are troubling at best. Though, let’s be honest here, those findings are why we exist as a literacy coalition and why it’s our mission every single day to fight for those neighborhoods, those families, and those children. We work our tails off trying to connect individuals in need of literacy services with programs, to give those same programs the resources and help they need to do the best job they can for those individuals, and to raise awareness for the overall cause. So where’s the rant, you say? Shortly after the findings of Success by 6 were released, a morning radio show in Austin attacked the very communities that need us most with hateful words like “ignorant,” “stupid,” and “poor.” These radio hosts (who shall remain nameless, using all my willpower to not link them here) even went so far as to say that the very people we work day-in and day-out to support and help are not worthy of pro-creation. I’m sorry, what?????!!!! These men have the power to reach thousands of people with their words, and this is what they choose to say? And we’re supposed to look up to them and give them our support by tuning in as we make our morning commutes? I am appalled that this radio station feels these men are worthy of airtime when, instead of using their voices for positive change, they’re relying on their own ignorance and stupidity to infuse their listeners with venomous misconceptions. Imagine if one of them had taken the 30 seconds needed to simply google “literacy services Austin” and then had taken another 10 seconds to mention just one of the seven agencies or programs that popped up, imagine how much good 40 seconds of their time could have done! Just one person could have been listening who might have then picked up the Fight for Literacy Torch by donating, volunteering, or just plain old talking about the Success by 6 findings to a friend. For shame. Maybe we should take away their ability to procreate! To end on a positive and uplifting story that highlights the human ability to surpass all limits, I leave you with this: