Wednesday, September 3, 2008
...in other words, YOU, go read this. It's got nothing to do with writing or reading or anything like that, but it's still very worthy of your time. It's not political, although it seems that way at first...it's just the way it is, and the way it could be.
...and after you read, here's why it matters to me:
I had the brightest child I ever taught four years ago. She was black, and she was poor, but I looked at her and thought, You, you can make it.
And then she got pregnant. And her life was no longer about rising above her poor home, but about staying in it, where the baby was, because that was all she had left. That happened my first year of teaching. I remember, I *remember* how I thought she could be anything, how I thought my teaching her grammar and literature would make a difference, how she'd use what I taught her in her doctoral thesis, how one day she might come to the school and visit me and show me, her teacher, her degree. I looked at this kid, and my dreams were her dreams, and I believed in her as much as I believed in anything, and I knew with all my soul she could be more than what she was.
She dropped out her senior year, when her baby was one. It had gotten to be too much.
I'll just say this: while it is wonderful and beautiful that she brought a life into the world, I cannot help but believe it was at the cost of her own.