posts 16 - 27 of 27
red
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 10

Boston, race, redlining, and desegregation: What do we make of its legacy?

  • Did the ends (desegregating the Boston public schools) justify the means (busing)?

Since I wouldn’t consider the ends having been met, the means haven’t been justified. The busing in Boston succeeded in further polarizing an already segregated city and the impacts of the violence from busing are still seen in Boston. As seen in the article “Did busing slow Boston’s Desegregation,” the violence by the white community forced many black families to move out of predominantly white neighborhoods, furthering the segregation. For instance, in Southie, where 155 black people lived was reduced to a black population of zero in the ten years that followed busing as a result of the increased violence.


  • Was desegregation a worthy goal or not?

Without a doubt desegregation is a worthy goal that still has yet to be fully accomplished. From the video that we saw in class, the public schools in predominantly black neighborhoods were extremely lacking in the adequate materials for learning, as seen in them having to save the amount of pencils and crayons they had in order to have enough for the whole school. The inferior educational opportunities created a severe detriment in the future opportunities of students in the black community and still do. This impact on the education of the balck community leads to future disparities in the work force and in higher education. In integrating the schools, it creates more equal opportunities and fosters healthier relationships between the diverse enclaves of Boston.


  • Did change need to happen in the Boston Public Schools or were there other solutions to the remedy prescribed by Judge W. Arthur Garrity?

Change was absolutely necessary for BPS, but busing could’ve possibly created a more segregated community than before. Another possible solution would’ve been to increase funding to the predominantly black schools, so that they would have access to the same materials and educational resources that the predominantly white schools had access to. If busing had been introduced after a larger whole scale reform of the schools themselves, then there might’ve been less push-back. Ultimately I believe that busing was necessary in order to create more diverse schools and desegregate Boston, but in order to ensure that bussing had lasting helpful effects on race relations in Boston a more gradual integration of schools could have slowed or decreased the violence that ensued.


  • Can you imagine going to school in the environment of 1974-1975? What would have been tolerable? What would have been intolerable?

Going to school in the environment of 1974-1975 would’ve been almost intolerable because of the violence that took place and the tension that was an impediment to learning. Sticking to the routine of school would’ve been the most effective way to ease tensions and continue getting an education. I will never be able to fully comprehend the environment in which the children of Boston were forced to grow up in. With education being overlooked for the sake of continuing hateful racism and segregation in BPS.


  • What do you see as the most visible effects today of the desegregation era of 1974-1975?

The most visible effects of segregation today is the continual segregation between the neighborhoods of Boston, that remain divided as a ramification of the violence resulting from busing. Although schools are more diverse than they used to be, we still have a long way before we fully desegregate the schools and provide equal quality education to all children of Boston. Exemplified in the demographic of BLS, BPS still lacks a lot of diversity throughout the system, especially concerning the exam schools that are considered more prestigious and are composed mostly of white students.

iris almonds
Posts: 16

Boston, race, redlining and desegregation: What do we make of its legacy?

Segregation in the Boston Public Schools was a prominent issue that both whites and blacks knew about. The ends of desegregating the Boston Public Schools most definitely did not justify the means of busing. Children from the black neighborhoods of Boston were bused to the white neighbourhoods of Boston and vice versa without ever having ventured outside their own neighbourhood. These children were confused, scared, and had no idea what would happen to them. Many heard about buses being stoned and the constant fights at school. There were constant fights at school and an increased opposition between the races. As Stockman stated in her article, the white and black community grew more apart than ever when busing came into play. Boston has been quietly desegregating since the 1960s, but in 1974 when busing came into play, the white neighbours turned to their easiest targets, their black neighbours. Many white neighbours who were once friends with their black neighbors set their black neighbour’s house on fire. The goal of trying to achieve equal education is an important goal, but the means of busing did not justify that. Both the whites and blacks knew that most of the funding goes towards the white schools. The thinking behind busing was that, in order to achieve equal education, the black students would be used to schools where there are more resources. A better solution would have been to increase funding in black schools and allocate equal resources to all schools. The whites could have also been more educated and recognize the fact that segregation even exists.


Desegregation is definitely a worthy goal because it allows all students to have equal access to all resources. As stated in the essays written by the students at the Holmes School in Roxbury, all of them enjoyed being part of an integrated school, and all but one white student would like to return to the Holmes Schools. They stated that it was good to be able to be friends with people of different races. Desegregation is the end goal of busing and although that was not achieved, it allows people to accept the continuing racial and economic segregation still in our school system today. When talking about desegregation, the root cause needs to be addressed. The whites in our city deny the fact that segregation even takes place. For example, Louise Day Hicks believes that the school system is perfectly fine the way it is and there is no need to desegregate schools. The interaction between the black and white community is so limited that it is hard to desegregate schools. As stated in essays, one of the white students stated that he would have never gone to school in a black community with all black students. He said he didn’t want to go there because it was full of black kids. It turns out that he enjoyed it much more than he expected and would like to go back. Desegregation needs to start with the white community understanding the black community and vice versa. There needs to be more interaction between the communities and the right means needs to be taken to desegregate schools. This could start by allocating equal resources to all schools and not just the white schools.


Judge W. Arthur Garity’s plan was the first step in desegregating the Boston Public Schools because it was the first time that a white man claimed that the Boston Public Schools was purposeful keeping schools segregated. In addition to Judge Garity’s plan to desegregate the Boston Public Schools, other actions in the city needed to take place. For example, the equal allocation of resources to all schools. Second, the city itself needs to be more educated on the racial inequalities in Boston. For example, white folks should understand black folks more and not set their house on fire. Busing only promoted racial tensions and there could have been better ways to address desegregation.


I could never imagine going to school in that environment during the 1974-1975 school year. I would have been scared, confused, and I would have worried for my own safety. Having heard from someone who actually experienced busing and rode with Asian kids who were bused to Charlestown, she talked about how the kids were scared everyday and how the Asian parents sometimes did not send their kids to school. I would have felt uncomfortable and although I would have not been directly impacted between the Roxbury and South Boston busing, I would have been scared for others. I would not be able to focus on studying, but more focused on my safety.


The most visible effect of the desegregation of the era 1974-1975 is the more diverse schools throughout Boston. Now, it is not as intentional to have racially divided schools. Schools are more diverse and students in schools would not fight each other because they were of a different race. Students are more educated now and reflect on the truboling history of racism. Despite this, it would be wrong to say that our schools are not still segreated today. Neghbouhodds with predominantly white residents have schools that are predominantly white with better resources and neighbouhodos with predominantly people of color have less resources. An example of this would be BLS, a predominantly white school that has way more reoureses than other BPS schools that contain more people of color. Another visible effect is the fact that black students still don’t want to come to predominatly white schools for the fear of being alienated by their classmates, they fear that they will not be accepted or looked down upon. The cycle just continues when white schools get more resources than schools that contain predominantly people of color population. The cycle needs to break by first educating the population about the history of segregation and taking apporpriate actions to desegreate the education system.

SlicedBread
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 14

The Legacy of Desegregation and Busing in 1974-75.

I do think the ends did justify the means of busing. There was clearly a very big issue within BPS when it came to segregation in schools and the uneven distribution of resources between majority white and majority black schools, which required some kind of solution. While busing was certainly not a perfect system and had some big issues with backlash, it did help this problem. Any way to desegregate schools would have been met with some degree of backlash and the longer we waited to fix it, the worse the problem and backlash would be. However, it is also important to acknowledge that busing didn’t completely solve the problem and that similar issues continue to persist in the Boston Public Schooling system to this day.


Desegregation was certainly a worthy goal. The longer that segregation persists the more damage it will do. Especially having kids encounter segregation at such a young age will cause issues and prejudices within them through adulthood. Having segregation creates more of an us vs them mentality between people of different races and thus also creates more racism. Not to mention, the inequality that it creates in terms of opportunities, resources, etc. For example, the education that black students were receiving at the majority black schools compared to white students at majority white schools was insufficient. In the “Lasting Legacy of Boston Busing”article, it discussed how majority black schools didn’t get sufficient resources and materials and were usually overcrowded, while majority white schools got a lot more funding and weren’t crowded.

Changes definitely needed to be made in BPS, since black students were being severely disadvantaged by the education they were receiving. It’s hard to know what would work better as a remedy for the segregation in schools, since it’s a result of so many other issues like economic inequality and residential segregation. One quote from the “Lasting Legacy of Boston Busing” really stuck out to me: “Americans’ understanding of school desegregation in the North is skewed as a result, emphasizing innocent or unintended ‘de facto segregation’ over the housing covenants, federal mortgage redlining, public-housing segregation, white homeowners associations, and discriminatory real-estate practices that produced and maintained segregated neighborhoods, as well as the policies regarding school siting, districting, and student transfers that produced and maintained segregated schools.” I think that residential segregation is something we definitely need to tackle if we really want to come close to solving segregation in schools.


I can’t even begin to imagine how difficult it must have been to go to school in the environment in 1974-75. I think it must have been extremely confusing and stressful as a child to watch everything that was going on. Of course, the protest from adults and the violence brought by them must have been intolerable. I also think that the amount of backlash you witnessed must have really depended on what neighborhood you were going to school in. In South Boston for example, it was especially horrendous in terms of backlash and harassment, but in the collection of essays by kids at the Holmes Elementary School in Dorchester it didn’t sound like there was much violence there. More generally, I think the stress of the entire situation must have made it really difficult to focus and succeed academically, which is ironic since the whole point of the busing was to improve education.


I think the most visible effects of the desegregation era of 1974-75 is the increase in diversity in BPS, but also the overall decrease of people generally and white people in public schools. As Ms. Freeman mentioned in the description of this assignment, “As of 2018, there are 56,000 students in 125 schools: 14% are white, 34% are black, 42% are Hispanic, 9% are Asian with 1% identifying as other/multiracial”. This is significantly less people enrolled in BPS in general and also significantly less white people. I think the reason for this is due to the white flight that happened as a reaction to the busing in 74-75’ to the suburbs.

Bluekoala
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 15

Boston, race, redlining and desegregation: What do we make of its legacy?

The ends of desegregating the schools did not justify the means of busing because it was at the cost of a generation of childrens’ safety and education. As we saw in the Eyes on the Prize video, the situation had become so violent that students needed to be escorted by police. Even Lousie Day Hicks stepped in in an effort to persuade the white people to allow the black children to get on the buses and go home safely. These traumatic experiences changed the lives of these young children when all they wanted was to just attend school. Busing resulted in great division throughout the city. This division also affected the generation of white children from South Boston. Micheal Patrick Macdonald blamed a generation “lost to the chaos” on a “legacy of busing and a sense of “lost schools” combined with the lure of the streets, which seemed at the time to offer so much to so many.” Busing had widespread consequences for both races.


Desegregation was very much a worthy goal because of the impact it was having on childrens’ education. There were huge disparities between the education of predominantly white schools and predominantly black schools so changes definitely needed to happen in the Boston Public Schools. As Batson said in the article “How a standoff over schools changed the country,” “The ‘best possible education is not possible where segregation exists.” Judge W. Arthur Garrity’s order for desegregation was a solution. However, there were ways that it could have been done better. There should have been more time to prepare for the transition. Having the kids meet beforehand would’ve made the situation a bit more peaceful so that they would know who they were going to be with and be more willing to interact with each other. In the article “Did busing slow Boston’s desegregation?” Junior and Sal had been friends since first grade, but when the busing began, Sal’s mother and Junior’s mother had opposing views. Sal’s mother was against busing because his “mother was scared to put us on a bus to a neighborhood that she knew nothing about.” These were completely new environments that families were being thrust into without any prior preparation which contributed greatly to the strong hatred people had for busing.


I can not even begin to imagine what going to school in the environment of 1974-1975 would be like for me. The constant yelling and tension of the school environment on top of the current stress that I have now would have been intolerable. Just going to school now is already so stressful with constant tests and the pressure of doing well to get into college. I think the most visible effect today of the desegregation era of 1974-1975 is the diversity of schools. In the video that I watched as part of the Delving more deeply into the legacy of Boston’s school desegregation in-class exercise, it compared a 1953 class picture from Josiah Quincy Elementary school to a class picture after busing. The huge difference that busing made in diversity is clear. This especially stuck out to me because I attended JQES prior to BLS and my class pictures looked very similar to the after busing photo. Knowing that busing was responsible for that is the highlight of today’s effects of the desegregation era for me.

Bluekoala
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 15

Originally posted by iris almonds on October 24, 2021 16:49

Segregation in the Boston Public Schools was a prominent issue that both whites and blacks knew about. The ends of desegregating the Boston Public Schools most definitely did not justify the means of busing. Children from the black neighborhoods of Boston were bused to the white neighbourhoods of Boston and vice versa without ever having ventured outside their own neighbourhood. These children were confused, scared, and had no idea what would happen to them. Many heard about buses being stoned and the constant fights at school. There were constant fights at school and an increased opposition between the races. As Stockman stated in her article, the white and black community grew more apart than ever when busing came into play. Boston has been quietly desegregating since the 1960s, but in 1974 when busing came into play, the white neighbours turned to their easiest targets, their black neighbours. Many white neighbours who were once friends with their black neighbors set their black neighbour’s house on fire. The goal of trying to achieve equal education is an important goal, but the means of busing did not justify that. Both the whites and blacks knew that most of the funding goes towards the white schools. The thinking behind busing was that, in order to achieve equal education, the black students would be used to schools where there are more resources. A better solution would have been to increase funding in black schools and allocate equal resources to all schools. The whites could have also been more educated and recognize the fact that segregation even exists.


Desegregation is definitely a worthy goal because it allows all students to have equal access to all resources. As stated in the essays written by the students at the Holmes School in Roxbury, all of them enjoyed being part of an integrated school, and all but one white student would like to return to the Holmes Schools. They stated that it was good to be able to be friends with people of different races. Desegregation is the end goal of busing and although that was not achieved, it allows people to accept the continuing racial and economic segregation still in our school system today. When talking about desegregation, the root cause needs to be addressed. The whites in our city deny the fact that segregation even takes place. For example, Louise Day Hicks believes that the school system is perfectly fine the way it is and there is no need to desegregate schools. The interaction between the black and white community is so limited that it is hard to desegregate schools. As stated in essays, one of the white students stated that he would have never gone to school in a black community with all black students. He said he didn’t want to go there because it was full of black kids. It turns out that he enjoyed it much more than he expected and would like to go back. Desegregation needs to start with the white community understanding the black community and vice versa. There needs to be more interaction between the communities and the right means needs to be taken to desegregate schools. This could start by allocating equal resources to all schools and not just the white schools.


Judge W. Arthur Garity’s plan was the first step in desegregating the Boston Public Schools because it was the first time that a white man claimed that the Boston Public Schools was purposeful keeping schools segregated. In addition to Judge Garity’s plan to desegregate the Boston Public Schools, other actions in the city needed to take place. For example, the equal allocation of resources to all schools. Second, the city itself needs to be more educated on the racial inequalities in Boston. For example, white folks should understand black folks more and not set their house on fire. Busing only promoted racial tensions and there could have been better ways to address desegregation.


I could never imagine going to school in that environment during the 1974-1975 school year. I would have been scared, confused, and I would have worried for my own safety. Having heard from someone who actually experienced busing and rode with Asian kids who were bused to Charlestown, she talked about how the kids were scared everyday and how the Asian parents sometimes did not send their kids to school. I would have felt uncomfortable and although I would have not been directly impacted between the Roxbury and South Boston busing, I would have been scared for others. I would not be able to focus on studying, but more focused on my safety.


The most visible effect of the desegregation of the era 1974-1975 is the more diverse schools throughout Boston. Now, it is not as intentional to have racially divided schools. Schools are more diverse and students in schools would not fight each other because they were of a different race. Students are more educated now and reflect on the truboling history of racism. Despite this, it would be wrong to say that our schools are not still segreated today. Neghbouhodds with predominantly white residents have schools that are predominantly white with better resources and neighbouhodos with predominantly people of color have less resources. An example of this would be BLS, a predominantly white school that has way more reoureses than other BPS schools that contain more people of color. Another visible effect is the fact that black students still don’t want to come to predominatly white schools for the fear of being alienated by their classmates, they fear that they will not be accepted or looked down upon. The cycle just continues when white schools get more resources than schools that contain predominantly people of color population. The cycle needs to break by first educating the population about the history of segregation and taking apporpriate actions to desegreate the education system.

I agree that the violence that arose because of busing makes it an unjustified means to an end. These young children were put through so much trauma when there were other solutions that could’ve prevented this. The childhood of the black children should not have been sacrificed as a way to achieve a goal.

strawberry123
Chestnut Hill, MA, US
Posts: 15

Boston, race, redlining, and desegregation: What do we make of its legacy?

  • Did the ends (desegregating the Boston public schools) justify the means (busing)?
    • The ends did, in fact, justify the means for desegregation of Boston public schools through busing. Although black children, unfortunately, had an enemy on their backs in 1974-1975, their hope and bravery to push through ultimately led to an educational environment with diversity and equity in the city of Boston. When looking back on the way black people felt before integration occurred in the educational system, the article, "How a Standoff Over Schools Changed the Country", explains the limitation that was happening: "But black families were rarely given permission to transfer to other schools. They found themselves increasingly trapped." Because of busing, schools were able to directly change which I think was the only way integration could've occurred. Although, I may say the solution should have been arranged in a more careful and sensitive way. In class on Wednesday, we looked at the very important segment from "Eyes on the Prize" which brought up a great point; the bus drivers should not have been only white.
  • Was desegregation a worthy goal or not?
    • I think desegregation was a worthy goal that continues even in 2021. Every day, the Boston Public Schools Committee should look for new ways to diversify schools and make oppurtunies available equally. A decision made in the fall of 2020, the elimination of the ISEE, is an example of changes still needing to be happening. The exam schools, especially Boston Latin School, continue to have an immense percentage of white students that are ensured to have a good education and a well-planned future ahead of them. Without the test, itself, and with neighborhoods of minorities being a huge focus, equal education for all is a step closer. Desegregation in Boston and all over the country should be a goal every single day because this issue is not finished.
  • Did change need to happen in the Boston Public Schools or were there other solutions to the remedy prescribed by Judge W. Arthur Garrity?
    • Change needed to happen in the Boston Public Schools and it needed to happen urgently. I do think that forcing schools to desegregate and quickly push these two groups of people that have been separated for so long was done inefficiently. It was as if Boston thought the only way to achieve this goal of desegregation was by putting these children in harm's way. That said, I don't believe that slowly desegregating the schools would've necessarily worked which is really frustrating to think about. It's awful that racism in Boston was at such a high that white families were pulling their children out of school, leading to an increase in drug rate for teenagers, just because they could not stand the idea of change happening.
  • Can you imagine going to school in the environment of 1974-1975? What would have been tolerable? What would have been intolerable?
    • I could never imagine going to school in the environment of 1974-1975. It was a time of hate, racism, and complete disrespect which would've been so horrible to witness. I think I would have been intolerant of the barbaric attitudes towards black people and the disgusting language used to describe them. Additionally, I think I would've been on the side of busing being available to black students and the integration of schools. I also would've gone to school, as long as I knew I wouldn't be in much danger, but I would've hated seeing the white parents rallying after school and protesting against my own classmates.
  • What do you see as the most visible effects today of the desegregation era of 1974-1975?
    • The most visible effects of the desegregation era of 1974-1975 are seen today in the entrance of the exam schools, as mentioned earlier. The ISEE did not offer any sort of reassurance that desegregation would occur as it benefitted white people mainly. With the exam being taken away, children are now being proctored a test during school hours which limits the advantage that most people had of being knowledgeable of such an opportunity. Another effect is shown in Boston's predominately white private schools which have a large fee that only the wealthy can pay, while public schools are viewed to be much more diverse.
strawberry123
Chestnut Hill, MA, US
Posts: 15

Originally posted by OverthinkingEnigma on October 21, 2021 22:01

  • Did the ends (desegregating the Boston public schools) justify the means (busing)?

The ends did justify the means. The segregation of Boston’s public schools was evident but white people, especially those from South Boston like Lousie Day Hicks, believed that both school systems were equal and sufficient. Schools for children of color were funded less and couldn’t provide its students the best quality of education or supplies, and the segregation of schools would’ve only allowed for these conditions to go unnoticed and fester. What allowed these conditions to last is simply racism and it didn’t matter whether it was public/obvious demonstrations of racism or racism ‘undercover,’ such an ideology would have objected to desegregating one way or another. Simply put, it wouldn’t have mattered what time desegregation of schools took place because racism had a tight grip on the city of Boston for years and it wouldn’t simply disappear on the first day of busing or any form of mixed race schooling. Putting an end to segregation in Boston public schools would require time and effort but most importantly, it would require someone to take the first step. Thus, by implementing the busing regiment, we were able to take the first step in desegregating but dismantling a system which had been normalized for years never would have been easy.

  • Was desegregation a worthy goal or not?

Desegregation was a worthy goal. The video we as a class watched on busing stated that the education system in place was harming children of color. Most struggled to write grammatically correct and coherent sentences thus proving that schooling for children of color had put them at a disadvantage when compared to their white peers. Education is the foundation of every child’s future because the quality of education that one receives determines their job opportunities, income, housing, food, and overall living situation. If we had allowed for segregation to continue all POC would have suffered at the hands of the system and country that preached equality and claimed to care for the well-being of its people.

  • Did change need to happen in the Boston Public Schools or were there other solutions to the remedy prescribed by Judge W. Arthur Garrity?

Change needed to happen in Boston Public Schools, there was clear evidence that black schools weren’t given the same attention or supplies like that of white schools thus generating a fundamental impact on children of color. However, there were most likely better solutions to the remedy prescribed by Judge W. Arthur Garrity. He didn’t consider the fact that South Boston Highschool was underfunded as well and that some white people of South Boston were predominantly poor and lived in projects. Moreover, the effects of busing on both sides is something to consider and reflect on. Students of color endured one of the most tragic and frightening displays of racism; an entire generation of (white) students was lost due to dropping out and unemployed dropouts resorted to the selling and consumption of drugs shortly after. Furthermore, the execution of busing only amplified the racial divide and encouraged both sides, white and black, to fear one another. Schools were made into practical war zones as the safety of every student was put at risk because of Garrity’s lack of awareness of the danger South Boston residents posed to black students.

  • Can you imagine going to school in the environment of 1974-1975? What would have been tolerable? What would have been intolerable?

I wouldn’t want to imagine myself attending school in the environment of 1974-1975. As a person of color, I would be immediately targeted and harassed if I were to undergo busing. If anything, I would feel so confused as to why masses of white people would object to me attending school. I wouldn’t be able to comprehend why simply wanting a proper education would go against a white person’s god given rights. I wouldn’t have been able to tolerate the constant fear that I might be attacked by a mob or stones with rocks or glass every school day. Moreover, I would fear white teenagers the most. Along with white privilege, their age would excuse them of most of their actions, especially if they were targeted towards POC. Nevertheless, I would have tolerated the tense environment in schools because I value my education above all else. At that time and still to this day, education defines the rest of your future thus I wouldn’t risk my future for the white students who dropped out of school because of their racist beliefs.

  • What do you see as the most visible effects today of the desegregation era of 1974-1975?

I now see more diverse schools with children and parents who don’t object to having their kid surrounded by a variety of races and ethnicities. Additionally, most schools have enough funding to provide proper textbooks, supplies, and teachers for students. Nevertheless, there still seems to be some reminiscence of unintentional segregation in schools. This is most likely the result of differences in income as well as environmental racism. Neighborhoods in Boston that have a POC majority are more likely to have worse schools than those in more wealthier areas which are occupied by a white majority. If schools aren’t able to provide children of color with proper opportunities and education, it would only allow the cycle of environmental racism to continue. Moreover, children of color still refrain from attending predominantly white schools out of fear and concern. As a student of color myself, I can sympathize with such a feeling, considering I begged my parents to let me switch to BLA which had more students I could racially relate with. The lack of POC in BLS is a common feature in similarly structured schools because not every student or family is exposed to the same opportunities and knowledge compared to a white Bostonian.

I completely agree and really like how you used the support of black children not knowing how to write grammatically correct sentences to justify why desegregation is such an important goal. Desegregation ensures equity and good education for all as well as making sure people of color are not limited to oppurtunities nor advantages that schools can offer.

user01135
West Roxbury, Massachusetts, US
Posts: 12

Boston, race, redlining, and desegregation: What do we make of its legacy?

Did the ends (desegregating the Boston public schools) justify the means (busing)?

I do not think that the ends justified the means. I think that segregation was a big problem at the time, and I think that the city had the right idea in mind when they decided to bus, but the busing of children was not the right solution. The busing increased segregation and hatred between white families and families of color. There were many acts of violence against the buses and many attempts to stop the busing. This raised tensions and overall made the situation worse.

Was desegregation a worthy goal or not?

I think that desegregation was a worthy goal but I do not think that justifies the busing. I think the city decided to bus students to act as an easy solution that would take up some time, instead of caring enough to work towards finding a better solution. I think that all students should have always had equal education and equal opportunities which makes it a worthy goal.

Did change need to happen in the Boston Public Schools or were there other solutions to the remedy prescribed by Judge W. Arthur Garrity?

Yes, change needed to happen in the Boston Public School systems. The education system was negatively affecting students of color. Schools in black neighborhoods were given much less attention than in white neighborhoods. This affected these students educations and affected their futures. Change needed to happen before things got any worse.

Can you imagine going to school in the environment of 1974-1975? What would have been tolerable? What would have been intolerable?

I do not think going to school at all in 1974-1975 would have been tolerable. I think the amount of hatred inside and outside of classes would have made it impossible for anyone to focus and learn.

What do you see as the most visible effects today of the desegregation era of 1974-1975?

I think that because of this era we see a lot of desegregation in schools. I don't think we are perfect and I don't think we are done working towards this goal but you can see that we have made a lot of progress because of these events.

user01135
West Roxbury, Massachusetts, US
Posts: 12

Originally posted by facingstudent8 on October 24, 2021 10:38

No the ends certainly did not justify the means. The decision to bus the blackest part of boston to the whitest part was not well thought out at all and created an enormous amount of unnecessary pain. The idea behind desegregation, to achieve equal education, was a worthy goal, but the way they went about achieving it could have been improved. The solution, however, did not address the systemic problem of inequity in schools. Busing really was a solution that was “too little too late”. A more fair solution might have been to federally subsidize school funds and divide it equally among all schools instead of basing it off the property taxes of those in the neighborhood. Change absolutely needed to happen in Boston Public Schools, however, busing was a temporary solution to a much larger issue surrounding segregation in Boston. It would have made more sense to have busing as only a first step to addressing this segregation issue in Boston.

I agree with you on how the busing was clearly not thought out. I think anyone could have known that this would lead to violence and not solve anything. I also agree with you thinking how this was just a temporary solution instead of them using it as their only plan.

apples21
SOUTH BOSTON, MA, US
Posts: 13
I think that the ends did justify the busing, although I do not believe that the situation was handled the way that it should have been. Desegregation was a major issue of concern in Boston and was something that needed to happen, so busing students to other schools seemed like a way to integrate all of the schools. Although, this system that they created made for a dangerous learning environment for many people. This is because when mostly black students were being bused to schools like south Boston, they were met with large amounts of verbal and physical abuse. Therefore, I think that in theory the idea of busing was put in good heart, but the idea did not end up working in a safe manner. I think that desegregation was 100% a worthy goal, as in no way should segregation be forced upon a country or city. Not only for its social morality problems having to do with racism, segregation was also a worthy problem because these separate schools were not equal in the slightest. The schools that the white children were miles better than the schools that the black children were going to. I think change in Boston schools was definitely needed, and I think that in theory busing was a good way in order to desegregate Boston public schools. Sadly, this didn’t work due to the intense racism that the children that were bing bused were facing. I think that along with busing, better education on racism and why treating people this way is wrong was needed to have a bigger emphasis to young children in Boston schools as the children were also clearly being influenced by their racist parents. I think that going to school during this period would have been absolutely terrible. This is due to the insane amounts of tension that was around inside of the schools. I know from the video that we watched that there were multiple fights every single day, and sadly it seems like people somewhat grouped up by race inside of the schools. I do think that though there there have been some positive outcomes due to busing, as I now see much less segregation in schools in Boston, and although they may not be equal in education level, most public schools in Boston at least have the means and materials to teach a class. Although this is true, racial segregation in schools is not all the way gone, as we can still see it today in different areas in Boston, that have higher poverty rates, have less of an opportunity to get a better education as they may have to attend a worse school compared to someone In Boston who is financially comfortable.
apples21
SOUTH BOSTON, MA, US
Posts: 13

Originally posted by OverthinkingEnigma on October 21, 2021 22:01

  • Did the ends (desegregating the Boston public schools) justify the means (busing)?

The ends did justify the means. The segregation of Boston’s public schools was evident but white people, especially those from South Boston like Lousie Day Hicks, believed that both school systems were equal and sufficient. Schools for children of color were funded less and couldn’t provide its students the best quality of education or supplies, and the segregation of schools would’ve only allowed for these conditions to go unnoticed and fester. What allowed these conditions to last is simply racism and it didn’t matter whether it was public/obvious demonstrations of racism or racism ‘undercover,’ such an ideology would have objected to desegregating one way or another. Simply put, it wouldn’t have mattered what time desegregation of schools took place because racism had a tight grip on the city of Boston for years and it wouldn’t simply disappear on the first day of busing or any form of mixed race schooling. Putting an end to segregation in Boston public schools would require time and effort but most importantly, it would require someone to take the first step. Thus, by implementing the busing regiment, we were able to take the first step in desegregating but dismantling a system which had been normalized for years never would have been easy.

  • Was desegregation a worthy goal or not?

Desegregation was a worthy goal. The video we as a class watched on busing stated that the education system in place was harming children of color. Most struggled to write grammatically correct and coherent sentences thus proving that schooling for children of color had put them at a disadvantage when compared to their white peers. Education is the foundation of every child’s future because the quality of education that one receives determines their job opportunities, income, housing, food, and overall living situation. If we had allowed for segregation to continue all POC would have suffered at the hands of the system and country that preached equality and claimed to care for the well-being of its people.

  • Did change need to happen in the Boston Public Schools or were there other solutions to the remedy prescribed by Judge W. Arthur Garrity?

Change needed to happen in Boston Public Schools, there was clear evidence that black schools weren’t given the same attention or supplies like that of white schools thus generating a fundamental impact on children of color. However, there were most likely better solutions to the remedy prescribed by Judge W. Arthur Garrity. He didn’t consider the fact that South Boston Highschool was underfunded as well and that some white people of South Boston were predominantly poor and lived in projects. Moreover, the effects of busing on both sides is something to consider and reflect on. Students of color endured one of the most tragic and frightening displays of racism; an entire generation of (white) students was lost due to dropping out and unemployed dropouts resorted to the selling and consumption of drugs shortly after. Furthermore, the execution of busing only amplified the racial divide and encouraged both sides, white and black, to fear one another. Schools were made into practical war zones as the safety of every student was put at risk because of Garrity’s lack of awareness of the danger South Boston residents posed to black students.

  • Can you imagine going to school in the environment of 1974-1975? What would have been tolerable? What would have been intolerable?

I wouldn’t want to imagine myself attending school in the environment of 1974-1975. As a person of color, I would be immediately targeted and harassed if I were to undergo busing. If anything, I would feel so confused as to why masses of white people would object to me attending school. I wouldn’t be able to comprehend why simply wanting a proper education would go against a white person’s god given rights. I wouldn’t have been able to tolerate the constant fear that I might be attacked by a mob or stones with rocks or glass every school day. Moreover, I would fear white teenagers the most. Along with white privilege, their age would excuse them of most of their actions, especially if they were targeted towards POC. Nevertheless, I would have tolerated the tense environment in schools because I value my education above all else. At that time and still to this day, education defines the rest of your future thus I wouldn’t risk my future for the white students who dropped out of school because of their racist beliefs.

  • What do you see as the most visible effects today of the desegregation era of 1974-1975?

I now see more diverse schools with children and parents who don’t object to having their kid surrounded by a variety of races and ethnicities. Additionally, most schools have enough funding to provide proper textbooks, supplies, and teachers for students. Nevertheless, there still seems to be some reminiscence of unintentional segregation in schools. This is most likely the result of differences in income as well as environmental racism. Neighborhoods in Boston that have a POC majority are more likely to have worse schools than those in more wealthier areas which are occupied by a white majority. If schools aren’t able to provide children of color with proper opportunities and education, it would only allow the cycle of environmental racism to continue. Moreover, children of color still refrain from attending predominantly white schools out of fear and concern. As a student of color myself, I can sympathize with such a feeling, considering I begged my parents to let me switch to BLA which had more students I could racially relate with. The lack of POC in BLS is a common feature in similarly structured schools because not every student or family is exposed to the same opportunities and knowledge compared to a white Bostonian.

I completely agree with your opinion on the effects of busing and how the impacts of it are still seen today. I agree that it is great that because of the forced desegregation by busing, schools in Boston have become more diverse and become more diverse learning environments in general. I agree that this has also helped people to become educated on racial issues and also not have a problem with learning next to someone who doesn’t look like you(which obviously never should have been a problem in the first place). And although the system for BPS isn’t perfect and there still are some effects of racial segregation in the city, it is good that at most educated people have become aware of these things.

Karma
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 9

Boston, race, redlining, and desegregation: What do we make of its legacy?

The Morgan V Hennigan case was easily the most important case in Massachusetts that revolved around BPS. Busing as a whole was a good idea with pure intentions. There really was no other solution that I could think of that wouldn't result in some sort of push back or altercation but I think that busing handled desegregation in a good way. The only reason there was so much violence after was due to people not wanting desegregation as a whole not because of busing specifically. Desegregation was a worthy goal in my eyes because it was really the only way to end education inequality which is something that is still prevalent today. I don't think I would have been able to tolerate the racist reactions of busing during this time, however, simply because the lengths that people were going to in order to prevent busing was very scary. I remember in the film that the black students who bused to school in Southie were pretty much trapped in the school building because there was a bunch of angry racists waiting to harm them outside the school. Things like this terrify me even today. The support of other black students would be the only thing that would make it worthwhile to me.

To say that it has effected the BPS district would simply be an understatement. Firstly, there is still an education inequality today in the school system. I feel as though a majority of students of color are in schools of low income. . Boston as a whole is still segregated to me which correlates with how the schools are kind of segregated also. It is definitely starting to become diverse but there are still things that need to change. Even looking at BLS, a few years back I felt as though I could count the number of black students on my hand. Now, however, I pretty much see a new black student's face almost everyday. When it comes to average schools or schools of low income, however, it is safe to assume that it is predominantly black or latino.

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