posts 16 - 26 of 26
Lion03
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 21

I think they tried to come up with the best solution at the time. It was a start to a larger solution. However, I think the solution of busing was rushed. There was no time to slowly ease kids into "white schools" and everyone was just thrown into it without time to prepare. This solution resulted in a lot of unnecessary violence towards black people going to school in Southie. They were targeted by all the white people for something that wasn't their fault at all. Yes it was a worthy goal, and still is. Desegregation was important especially at this time since schools with mostly black kids had poorer education. It was important to get these kids into the "white schools" because they were able to get a better education due to unfair treatment in the school system. It was a worthy goal because of how much of an impact it had on the city itself and the education in it. I say it STILL is a worthy goal because these effects carry on until today and we see the segregation today continuing in modern redlining. Yes, change was very necessary in the Boston Public Schools. It was very apparent that there were two systems. The white system and the black system. After the busing solution was created somebody gave the black students a survey on how they were being treated. In this survey the most notable thing was that the black students were unable to spell and none of them had proper grammar, further proving the point that there were actually two school systems under one city. I can’t imagine going to school during this period because it is so incredibly different from the school environment we have now. The school is more diverse that a lot of other schools in Boston. There was so much outright violence and racism at this time. It is interesting to think about how openly racist everybody was and no one saw a problem with it. I think the whole situation is intolerable. The most noticeable effect of desegregation is able to get an equal education. However, there is still aspects of segregation/ redlining that we can see today.


Lion03
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 21

Originally posted by saucymango on October 24, 2021 00:55

First and foremost, the ends cannot justify the means if the ends did not come out in a positive way. Children of all different races, but most significantly Black children, were harassed and traumatized by White crowds. In the WGBH article, a young seventh grader talked about how despite enjoying the new school, she was still terrified of her prospects and dangers that could come upon her at any moment. Children across the city knew of the fights and hate crimes being committed. Furthermore, the ends also included increased backlash and consequently white flight. This new hatred and avoidance of the issue by leaving only served to continue/exacerbate racism in Boston.

Ultimately, this is because while desegregation is the end result that we should fight for in Boston, it cannot miraculously happen under one, and needless to say one of the first, policy that we pass. Forcibly busing students across Boston may have “desegregated schools,” but desegregation was desired due to the unequal access to resources and opportunities. Without addressing the root causes of the many different forms of inequity in Boston, the goal of desegregation is worthy but difficult to achieve.

Thus, in addition to Judge Garrity’s plan that was created by a white man with the help of White governments and committees, it needed the opinions and voices of Black residents because fundamentally, the city needed to change its mindset and resource distribution. Black parents were smart in touring the schools in other cities to understand what their children were being denied. Similarly, white parents should have been shown around schools in Black neighborhoods to witness the inequity firsthand.

On the other hand, the city simply needed to not encourage the hatred in white parents. The police and other institutions would go to violent protests and do very little or even force organizations that were helping Black folks to leave (Boston Globe article by Stockman). Second, the city should’ve attempted to distribute resources more evenly. I think that deep down, the white parents also did not want to send their children to other schools because they knew that they were resource-poor and associated the kids with the lack of resources. Instead of looking down at them, the city needed to take initiative to help them improve.

Personally, I cannot imagine the terror and turmoil that these young kids had to go through. In the video of Cynthia Yee, she explains how Asian kids were similarly bused to Charlestown for school. I would be able to tolerate going to school everyday as I had experienced going to an over 90% white school, but I would feel alienated and uncomfortable. Moreover, if there was potential harm to my life, I may stay home due to fear.

It’s saddening to see the impacts of the busing policy still exist today. Others have the perception that Boston is incredibly diverse, however, it is also incredibly segregated. Due to backlash from the policy, families both voluntarily and were forcibly displaced from their neighborhoods. They ended up in other communities with similar racial makeups, leading to the highly racially segregated communities we see today. This is true on the community level, but also among friends at school. Students tend to gravitate towards other students of the same race for various reasons. No matter what the reason is, it is something that is clear to most BLS students.

The last paragraph is very noteable to me. Its important to highlight the segregation that we still see today in Boston which I agree with. Boston and BLS still have a lot of work to do regarding desegregation and racism which I like that you highlighted that in your response.

niall5
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 26

I don’t believe that the ends justified the means in this situation, because the bussing led to the endangerment of school age children across Boston, and ended up not solving the racial disparity in our public schools (it still exists today). The goals they had in mind were the right idea, as they intended to desegregate BPS schools to lead to better educational quality for underprivileged students of color. Bussing though was not an effective solution to this problem, and it in fact became a catalyst for a hateful and racist movement in places like South Boston that became nationally known.


Desegregation was completely a worthy goal, as both Michael Patrick MacDonald’s and Matthew Delmont’s articles state, white students were each individually funded far more than each black student. The $100 difference may not seem like a ton, but over whole school populations this adds up and amounts to a big difference in the resources available to students in majority white vs. majority black schools. This goal however could have been reached through much more effective solutions. MacDonald’s article outlines how “In essence, liberal Garrity and conservative Hicks were working very well together, for their own class interests that sacrificed South Boston and Roxbury families.” This gives us the vivid picture of how bussing really did not work towards solving the racial disparity between black and white students, but really only sacrificed the educational quality of both groups, and pitted the communities against one another.


Going to school in Boston in 1974 would have been hellish for students across the board, but the main brunt being borne by black students that were bussed into Southie. As Echoes of Boston’s Bussing Crisis describes, many students felt thrust into scary situations that they were not prepared to deal with, and even though many were hopeful about the integration of different students, most were still fearful of what was to come. When Joseph Kirnon was in 6th grade, he feared the integration of schools because he had already had rocks thrown at him while he was bussed to school, showing the real danger many kids of color faced when simply going to school in the morning. Many white students were taught to be fearful of integration as well, and this only worsened the divide between students and between neighborhoods, despite the attempted solution of bussing.


A visible effect of this era of desegregation was the “white flight” of white families that could afford to move out of inner city neighborhoods moving to the suburbs. They were motivated by strong racism and did not want to be in integrated schools, so they fled the city and created suburban schools that had the same problem as the schools before, they were very white and well funded, while the inner city, majority black, schools suffered. This in fact created an even more segregated city, not legally but socially divided.

niall5
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 26

Originally posted by saucymango on October 24, 2021 00:55

First and foremost, the ends cannot justify the means if the ends did not come out in a positive way. Children of all different races, but most significantly Black children, were harassed and traumatized by White crowds. In the WGBH article, a young seventh grader talked about how despite enjoying the new school, she was still terrified of her prospects and dangers that could come upon her at any moment. Children across the city knew of the fights and hate crimes being committed. Furthermore, the ends also included increased backlash and consequently white flight. This new hatred and avoidance of the issue by leaving only served to continue/exacerbate racism in Boston.

Ultimately, this is because while desegregation is the end result that we should fight for in Boston, it cannot miraculously happen under one, and needless to say one of the first, policy that we pass. Forcibly busing students across Boston may have “desegregated schools,” but desegregation was desired due to the unequal access to resources and opportunities. Without addressing the root causes of the many different forms of inequity in Boston, the goal of desegregation is worthy but difficult to achieve.

Thus, in addition to Judge Garrity’s plan that was created by a white man with the help of White governments and committees, it needed the opinions and voices of Black residents because fundamentally, the city needed to change its mindset and resource distribution. Black parents were smart in touring the schools in other cities to understand what their children were being denied. Similarly, white parents should have been shown around schools in Black neighborhoods to witness the inequity firsthand.

On the other hand, the city simply needed to not encourage the hatred in white parents. The police and other institutions would go to violent protests and do very little or even force organizations that were helping Black folks to leave (Boston Globe article by Stockman). Second, the city should’ve attempted to distribute resources more evenly. I think that deep down, the white parents also did not want to send their children to other schools because they knew that they were resource-poor and associated the kids with the lack of resources. Instead of looking down at them, the city needed to take initiative to help them improve.

Personally, I cannot imagine the terror and turmoil that these young kids had to go through. In the video of Cynthia Yee, she explains how Asian kids were similarly bused to Charlestown for school. I would be able to tolerate going to school everyday as I had experienced going to an over 90% white school, but I would feel alienated and uncomfortable. Moreover, if there was potential harm to my life, I may stay home due to fear.

It’s saddening to see the impacts of the busing policy still exist today. Others have the perception that Boston is incredibly diverse, however, it is also incredibly segregated. Due to backlash from the policy, families both voluntarily and were forcibly displaced from their neighborhoods. They ended up in other communities with similar racial makeups, leading to the highly racially segregated communities we see today. This is true on the community level, but also among friends at school. Students tend to gravitate towards other students of the same race for various reasons. No matter what the reason is, it is something that is clear to most BLS students.

I’m glad you mentioned the segregation that still takes place at a community level today in Boston. Other posts mention our diversity as a positive impact of bussing but it is important to recognize that much of our city is still socially segregated. A big part of this was the “white flight” to the suburbs that took place after bussing.

9oclock
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 20

Originally posted by niall5 on October 24, 2021 23:40

I don’t believe that the ends justified the means in this situation, because the bussing led to the endangerment of school age children across Boston, and ended up not solving the racial disparity in our public schools (it still exists today). The goals they had in mind were the right idea, as they intended to desegregate BPS schools to lead to better educational quality for underprivileged students of color. Bussing though was not an effective solution to this problem, and it in fact became a catalyst for a hateful and racist movement in places like South Boston that became nationally known.


Desegregation was completely a worthy goal, as both Michael Patrick MacDonald’s and Matthew Delmont’s articles state, white students were each individually funded far more than each black student. The $100 difference may not seem like a ton, but over whole school populations this adds up and amounts to a big difference in the resources available to students in majority white vs. majority black schools. This goal however could have been reached through much more effective solutions. MacDonald’s article outlines how “In essence, liberal Garrity and conservative Hicks were working very well together, for their own class interests that sacrificed South Boston and Roxbury families.” This gives us the vivid picture of how bussing really did not work towards solving the racial disparity between black and white students, but really only sacrificed the educational quality of both groups, and pitted the communities against one another.


Going to school in Boston in 1974 would have been hellish for students across the board, but the main brunt being borne by black students that were bussed into Southie. As Echoes of Boston’s Bussing Crisis describes, many students felt thrust into scary situations that they were not prepared to deal with, and even though many were hopeful about the integration of different students, most were still fearful of what was to come. When Joseph Kirnon was in 6th grade, he feared the integration of schools because he had already had rocks thrown at him while he was bussed to school, showing the real danger many kids of color faced when simply going to school in the morning. Many white students were taught to be fearful of integration as well, and this only worsened the divide between students and between neighborhoods, despite the attempted solution of bussing.


A visible effect of this era of desegregation was the “white flight” of white families that could afford to move out of inner city neighborhoods moving to the suburbs. They were motivated by strong racism and did not want to be in integrated schools, so they fled the city and created suburban schools that had the same problem as the schools before, they were very white and well funded, while the inner city, majority black, schools suffered. This in fact created an even more segregated city, not legally but socially divided.

Post your response here.

You make an agreeable point, that busing put young kids in danger, catalysted white violence, and did not increase the education quality. But I wonder, do you believe that the desegretation of schools would not be justifiable for the goal of producing equality in any form?

Camm230
South Boston, MA, US
Posts: 17

Desegregating BPS schools

I don’t know if the ends justify the means in this case. Desegregation of the BPS schools was definitely a worthy goal, there was inequity in the schools and people wanted it fixed so they came up with a solution. However after watching the videos in class and seeing how much hate and violence went on in both neighborhoods it's hard to say that Boston made the right decision. Change definitely needed to happen, but I don’t think they executed it the right way, first they took the two poorest neighborhoods in Boston and pitted them against each other. As someone who is from Southie and has a huge family in Southie, it didn’t work out favorably for a lot of people. The people in my immediate family are slightly too young to remember when busing first happened, but a lot of my mom's older cousins didn’t want to go halfway across the city for school (they barely showed up with a school up the street so they dropped out and got “wrapped up with the wrong crowd”). My grandfather was a principle at an elementary school in Roxbury at the time, and he said part of the problem was that once that decision was made a lot of the older experienced teacher retired, so not only is there a ton of tension between the students because of what their parents have told them, but there were also all new teachers who didn’t really know how to control a class (let's be real even today if we had a new teacher the class gives them a hard time and knows they can get away with more stuff, imagine in a class with that type of tension between everyone). I live right down the street from South Boston High School (now called Excel) and there are not a lot of kids in the school at all, and it's a beautiful building with a ton of resources. It has a beautiful library, auditorium and cafeteria, and it is almost empty. People would rather cram their kids in tiny private schools than send them there, because of its history. This whole decision was made by rich people and the poor people of Boston suffered even today. Every morning when I go to school there are kids getting off the MBTA bus from the other side of the city to go to Excel. This history gave BPS schools such a bad reputation that they’re still feeling the effects of it today. And of course it was a problem that NEEDED to be addressed, but they didn’t do it right. I’ve seen it first hand, I grew up in Southie going to a public school and none of the “neighborhood kids” went to the public school, they all went to the tiny private school, because their parents didn’t believe the public school system wasn’t good for their kid (my mom was kinda judged by people for sending my siblings and I to public schools). Also as far as the METCO program, I work at the Southie Boys and Girls Club, some of my co-workers are in METCO programs and don’t like it. They get home late everyday and have to leave really early and are isolated in school. In the 1970s I know what would have happened if I went to school, first of all I live right down the street from Southie High, both my grandparents worked in BPS schools (in Roxbury and Southie) and are adamant about their children going to public schools, so I like my uncles and aunts I would’ve been bussed across the city. So I don’t know what should have happened the BPS schools definitely had a problem that needed to be addressed, but I don’t think they executed it in the right way.
Kazuma
Boston, Massachusetts, US
Posts: 18

I don't know if I can exactly agree with the ends justifying the means. I understand why the judge ordered busing and that it was for the good. I think the idea behind it and the morale were fine, but the execution is where it all went wrong. Busing caused a lot of the hidden hate and racism to come out into the open. Many people were hurt and it was a scary time for some. I also think that this was necessary. I see it as the city confronting its own issues. which it to this day, has still not completely mastered. But by having the busing continue even against the wants of almost the entire city, it forced everyone to have uncomfortable conversations.

I believe that desegregation was a worthy goal because I don't believe that our society could truly last if we kept up ideologies of segregation. I think that the change happening within the Boston Public Schools made the most sense just because BPS accounts for so many people across multiple demographics. It includes not only the students but, their parents/guardians, teachers, any other staff, and even other family members that may not be in direct care of the child.

It's hard imagining going to school in that type of environment. I think the racism would have definitely been intolerable but I wonder just how differently would I have been treated since I'm mixed. My mom also wouldn't have really liked the plan as she already doesn't like sending me to BLS seeing as it's a good ways away from home.

The most visible effects of the desegregation era today is probably the social system you see present in schools that have both white students and students of color like BLS. Often times, students of color stay in their own groups and white students keep to themselves. These actions only further the ideologies of segregation and the hold they have on people today.

Kazuma
Boston, Massachusetts, US
Posts: 18

Originally posted by niall5 on October 24, 2021 23:40

I don’t believe that the ends justified the means in this situation, because the bussing led to the endangerment of school age children across Boston, and ended up not solving the racial disparity in our public schools (it still exists today). The goals they had in mind were the right idea, as they intended to desegregate BPS schools to lead to better educational quality for underprivileged students of color. Bussing though was not an effective solution to this problem, and it in fact became a catalyst for a hateful and racist movement in places like South Boston that became nationally known.


Desegregation was completely a worthy goal, as both Michael Patrick MacDonald’s and Matthew Delmont’s articles state, white students were each individually funded far more than each black student. The $100 difference may not seem like a ton, but over whole school populations this adds up and amounts to a big difference in the resources available to students in majority white vs. majority black schools. This goal however could have been reached through much more effective solutions. MacDonald’s article outlines how “In essence, liberal Garrity and conservative Hicks were working very well together, for their own class interests that sacrificed South Boston and Roxbury families.” This gives us the vivid picture of how bussing really did not work towards solving the racial disparity between black and white students, but really only sacrificed the educational quality of both groups, and pitted the communities against one another.


Going to school in Boston in 1974 would have been hellish for students across the board, but the main brunt being borne by black students that were bussed into Southie. As Echoes of Boston’s Bussing Crisis describes, many students felt thrust into scary situations that they were not prepared to deal with, and even though many were hopeful about the integration of different students, most were still fearful of what was to come. When Joseph Kirnon was in 6th grade, he feared the integration of schools because he had already had rocks thrown at him while he was bussed to school, showing the real danger many kids of color faced when simply going to school in the morning. Many white students were taught to be fearful of integration as well, and this only worsened the divide between students and between neighborhoods, despite the attempted solution of bussing.


A visible effect of this era of desegregation was the “white flight” of white families that could afford to move out of inner city neighborhoods moving to the suburbs. They were motivated by strong racism and did not want to be in integrated schools, so they fled the city and created suburban schools that had the same problem as the schools before, they were very white and well funded, while the inner city, majority black, schools suffered. This in fact created an even more segregated city, not legally but socially divided.

I'm glad you brought up the childrens' safety in all this. They were essentially being sent into a warzone with no real protection. It's like that one woman brought up in the film, about how she wished they wouldn't send the really young children like her son because they couldn't defend themselves like the older kids could. It's important to ask ourselves if we think they thought about child safety during these times.

girlboss16
Boston, Massachussetts, US
Posts: 27

The lack and presence of diversity in Boston schools

I do not believe that the ends justify the means of busing. Busing led to violence and the endangerment of children who were attending school and riding buses during this time. Desegregation was the correct idea, however the execution of busing was not a good outcome. I feel as if BPS tends to execute their generally good ideas in horrible ways. To this day, we can notice how desegregation wasn’t fully accomplished because there is still a clear display of separation between races in each Boston school. There is no question about it: change did need to happen in BPS.

I completely believe that desegregation was a worthy goal. There is absolutely no reason why black students should be verbally and physically attacked and segregated against while being way less funded. Desegregation allows for everyone to get the same education, experiences, and opportunities since it was completely obvious that white children’s schools were better funded. This continues to be a worthy goal.

I feel like going to school in 1974-1975 would be pretty intolerable. School today is much different than back then; fortunately, we can see more diversity in the present. Though I definitely agree with the idea of desegregation, the acts of violence at the time would have been very emotional and scary to witness. There was so much racism at this time, and it is very interesting to ponder on the fact that everyone let this injustice slide.

The most visible effects of the acts from 1974-1975 are the lack of diversity, but also the success of desegregation. Though my two points seem to contradict each other, I believe that this makes sense. The act of desegregation, though executed in an unpleasant way, was surely effective. We can see a much more diverse array of students in each school now in the 21st century. However, because of all the cons of this act in the 70's, and how it wasn't totally executed, we are able to notice the presence of racism and lack of diversity. Schools are more diverse than before, but not as diverse as they should be.

girlboss16
Boston, Massachussetts, US
Posts: 27

Originally posted by niall5 on October 24, 2021 23:40

I don’t believe that the ends justified the means in this situation, because the bussing led to the endangerment of school age children across Boston, and ended up not solving the racial disparity in our public schools (it still exists today). The goals they had in mind were the right idea, as they intended to desegregate BPS schools to lead to better educational quality for underprivileged students of color. Bussing though was not an effective solution to this problem, and it in fact became a catalyst for a hateful and racist movement in places like South Boston that became nationally known.


Desegregation was completely a worthy goal, as both Michael Patrick MacDonald’s and Matthew Delmont’s articles state, white students were each individually funded far more than each black student. The $100 difference may not seem like a ton, but over whole school populations this adds up and amounts to a big difference in the resources available to students in majority white vs. majority black schools. This goal however could have been reached through much more effective solutions. MacDonald’s article outlines how “In essence, liberal Garrity and conservative Hicks were working very well together, for their own class interests that sacrificed South Boston and Roxbury families.” This gives us the vivid picture of how bussing really did not work towards solving the racial disparity between black and white students, but really only sacrificed the educational quality of both groups, and pitted the communities against one another.


Going to school in Boston in 1974 would have been hellish for students across the board, but the main brunt being borne by black students that were bussed into Southie. As Echoes of Boston’s Bussing Crisis describes, many students felt thrust into scary situations that they were not prepared to deal with, and even though many were hopeful about the integration of different students, most were still fearful of what was to come. When Joseph Kirnon was in 6th grade, he feared the integration of schools because he had already had rocks thrown at him while he was bussed to school, showing the real danger many kids of color faced when simply going to school in the morning. Many white students were taught to be fearful of integration as well, and this only worsened the divide between students and between neighborhoods, despite the attempted solution of bussing.


A visible effect of this era of desegregation was the “white flight” of white families that could afford to move out of inner city neighborhoods moving to the suburbs. They were motivated by strong racism and did not want to be in integrated schools, so they fled the city and created suburban schools that had the same problem as the schools before, they were very white and well funded, while the inner city, majority black, schools suffered. This in fact created an even more segregated city, not legally but socially divided.

I completely agree with your first paragraph in particular. Though desegregation appeared to be a good idea, it was not executed in a safe way. Sure, the spirit was there, but it led to endangerment of students who had to go to school. You have a good way of words!

curioushuman
US
Posts: 15

boston, race, redlining, and desegregation: what do we make of its legacy?

The ends (desegregating the Boston public schools) justified the means (busing) because there is no way for us to fight against racism if we do not acknowledge it or the way it continues to give certain people power and prevent others from having the opportunities and security they deserve. The education Black children were receiving was poor because the conditions of their schools were a lot worse than of their white counterparts. Desegregation was a worthy goal because it would put Black and white students in the same schools and therefore racism could no longer play a factor in the conditions of the schools because. This would also force white parents and other white people to see how much the Black schools were being ignored because their children would be experiencing that and they could see the injustice and fight for change. There could have been a different way to desegregate schools and there were definitely a multitude of negative effects of busing, as mentioned in the article “Whitey Bulger, Boston Busing, and Southie’s Lost Generation”. But I also believed that any way they had gone about it would not be easy and they would get backlash from a lot of white people. There has to be some negative before you can make a positive change. I can not imagine going to school in the environment of 1974-1975. The violence and things being thrown and people yelling slurs at Black students on the bus just trying to go to school is terrifying and I’m thankful I have not (yet at least) experienced anything as severe as that because of my race. I would say the most visible effects today of the desegregation era of 1974-1975 would be that our schools are somewhat less segregated and there are students of multiple races at every school. There could also be more white students who go to private schools and students of color in public schools than in the 70s. Busing or at least some change was necessary and I’m hopeful we can enact more change to counter the injustices and racism that are still very present in our schools.

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