Hot take: Racists are the absolute worst. Yeah, I said it! The latest instance of racists being the absolute worst takes us to California, where racist graffiti was found at a middle school.
A middle school. I’m telling you, they’re the worst.
According to SF Gate, an Asian-American parent was dropping off their child for a swim meet at Willow Glen Middle School in San Jose when they saw the words “white power” spray painted on an electrical box on campus. The parent was concerned that whoever spray painted the graffiti wanted young kids to see it. They took a photo of the graffiti and sent it to school officials.
It’s unclear who may be responsible for the graffiti or how long it was up as the school has been closed and doing virtual learning for the entirety of the pandemic. Jennifer Maddox, a representative for the school, released a statement saying, “We appreciate neighbors helping to keep our schools safe and crime-free by reporting vandalism and other issues so we can quickly repair. Unfortunately, graffiti on public spaces is common in San Jose, and we respond right away to all vandalism at our schools.”
The parent who found the graffiti told NBC Bay Area that they believe the school should go further than simply removing the graffiti.
“I’d like to see maybe education in those environments, both in middle school and in high school and maybe for it not to be quiet,” the parent who discovered the graffiti told NBC Bay Area. “It should spark conversation even if it is uncomfortable conversation.”
I agree with the parent, it’s a little weird to me that the statement doesn’t acknowledge the fact that it’s straight-up racist graffiti. Maybe I’m the weird one, but I wouldn’t treat “white power” graffiti with the same energy as someone writing “Darren Wuz Here.” Especially at a time where anti-Asian hate crimes are surging, and racists are becoming more and more brazen in vocalizing their distaste for Black people.
Whoever did this is probably either an asshole white kid trying to troll, or grown-ass racists actually trying to intimidate kids. Either way, it’s an issue. You can erase the graffiti, but you can’t erase the underlying problem here. The only way to handle it is to confront the problem head-on. I hope the school puts effort into ensuring that their students don’t have to deal with the absolute worst kinds of people, and most importantly, that they don’t become them.