How would you interpret this?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by riverdance85, Jan 24, 2014.

  1. riverdance85

    riverdance85 Rookie

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    Jan 24, 2014

    I teach Spanish in rural Virginia (where population is 95% Caucasian), where things politically tend to run strong (mostly to the conservative side). Today I was in shock.

    I was working in a basketball game trying to raise money for the foreign language department. I had a 'booth' set up with knick-knacks from Latin America.

    At the end of the game, I was getting ready to pack things up when our SRO, along with another deputy sheriff, came over to my table. The SRO said, "What's all this Mexican stuff you have out on the table?" as he tugged on a mini desktop flag of Peru. I explained to them that I was raising money for the FL dept. They looked at each other and left. I was pensive about what just happened.

    I am always friendly with the SRO but I took this as an attack... Police around here openly talk about being conservative, which is why I felt like they were 'testing' me... or perhaps fishing for something...

    Now, I do not express myself a neither conservative nor liberal (since I can't really do it publicly anyway), but I felt upset. I try to be on good terms with everybody...but it doesn't always work (I know...you can't make everybody happy).

    So, how would you have reacted to this? I feel trapped and uncomfortable about this because Spanish is what I teach... and in rural VA it tends not to be a favored subject.

    Sales from my fundraiser went rather well, nonetheless.

    Thanks to all for your insight.
     
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  3. Glühwürmchen

    Glühwürmchen Rookie

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    Jan 24, 2014

    Just think - you're educating the next generation so they don't end up ignorant like them! Don't mind the naysayers, you did nothing wrong.
     
  4. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    Jan 24, 2014

    From what you've said I think you are overreacting. He asked a question and you answered it. No need to look for any political discord.
     
  5. Croissant

    Croissant Comrade

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    Jan 24, 2014

    Kind of what I was thinking.

    Congrats on your successful fundraiser!
     
  6. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Jan 25, 2014

    Not at all. Education is a gift, even if they don't want it (sometimes especially if they don't want it).

    I would have corrected him, answered his question in the same way riverdance did and give their bewildered looks a pleasant smile as they left.

    I don't think they meant it as an attack on you, but they were probably curious and a little bit skeptical in addition to being stereotyping.

    I avoid a lot of stress by assuming the best of people (that they're just uneducated rather than being rude on purpose -- even if they are being rude on purpose) and treating hostility or misrepresentation with a smile and fun facts if necessary.
     
  7. 3Sons

    3Sons Enthusiast

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    Jan 25, 2014

    My biggest problem with my kids' Spanish teacher is that she's probably one of the best teachers in the entire school, and I wish she were teaching a more "core" subject!

    That said, Spanish is valuable and even conservatives should recognize it as such. Denigrating Spanish isn't "conservative", it's xenophobic.
     
  8. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    Jan 25, 2014

    Thank you for putting into words the way I feel. Never thought of it like that. As for the deputies I would inject a little humor into it. Next time I saw him I would speak to him in Spanish.
     
  9. riverdance85

    riverdance85 Rookie

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    Jan 26, 2014

    These are all interesting responses. I have considered them all and I thank you all very much for your input. I highly value the knowledge I gain from this forum.
     
  10. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    Jan 26, 2014

    As somebody that was a music major throughout college, I appreciate the fact that there are very good teachers out there that aren't in the core subjects.
     
  11. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Jan 26, 2014

    Unfortunately, ignorant people are everywhere. All you can do is ignore them.
     
  12. GemStone

    GemStone Habitué

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    Jan 26, 2014

    Question asked, question answered. What's the problem?
     
  13. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Jan 26, 2014

    I'm not really seeing a problem here except that the guy didn't know that the stuff on the table wasn't Mexican.
     

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