Protestors March Through Miami To Object Florida’s New Black History Standards
Hundreds marched through the streets of Miami, Florida on Wednesday, August 16 in protest against the state’s new standards on teaching Black history.
Protestors kicked off their rally around 11 a.m. at Booker T. Washington Senior High School and marched all the way to the Miami-Dade School Board, NBC Miami reports. The protest came in response to the Florida Board of Education approving new education standards for African American history that many state teachers deem as a “step backward.”
The #TeachNoLies protest was organized by the Miami Center for Racial Justice and included teachers, students, community members, and Teamsters all in opposition to the new education standards.
“The phrase that they’re saying that there were ‘benefits’ that happened to enslaved people is just disgusting,” protester Jonathan Gartrelle told Local 10 News.
“It denigrates the experience of 50 million enslaved Africans that were destroyed and brutally tortured and trafficked. And it tries to soften and whitewash history.”
Among the new standards, students will be taught that Black people benefitted from slavery because “slaves developed skills which, in some instances, could be applied for their personal benefit,” a 216-page document about the state’s 2023 standards in social studies reads.
Other curricula will accuse Black people of being instigators of violence in historical race massacres.
“Instruction includes acts of violence perpetrated against and by African Americans but is not limited to 1906 Atlanta Race Riot, 1919 Washington, D.C. Race Riot, 1920 Ocoee Massacre, 1921 Tulsa Massacre and the 1923 Rosewood Massacre,” the documented posted by the Florida Department of Education states
But protestors argue the new education standards are just an updated way of enforcing white supremacy.
“This is another white supremacist tactic that we’re seeing again and again over and over in different places, this time in education.” Gartrelle said.
The march lasted two hours and ended by 1 pm. Tennessee State Rep. Justin Pearson, who was one of two Black lawmakers in Tennessee who were expelled and reinstated for protesting in favor of gun control, was in Miami to participate in the rally.
“Being raped, having your children stolen from you, being maimed, being denied the right to read, those were not benefits for our ancestors,” Pearson said.