Another school in Mississippi is making the headlines for its bigotry. Earlier this year, a Mississippi school infamously told a lesbian student that she could not attend the school prom with her date. After the student sued the school, it canceled the prom. Facing national criticism and a lawsuit, the school resorted to trickery. It threw a sham prom for the lesbian and a few other students, while their classmates went to the real prom.
Now, another Mississippi school is making headlines for its bad behavior. MSNBC reports that Nettleton Middle School in Nettleton, Mississippi, has racially segregated the student council positions at the school. According to a memorandum that school officials distributed to students, only whites can run for the position of president. Only blacks can run for Vice President of the 8th grade class, while only whites can run for that position in 6th and 7th grade. The positions of "Secretary-Treasurer" and "Reporter" are similarly segregated. If this news is true, it proves, once again, that there are places in this country where the legal command of Equal Protection means nothing at all.
UPDATE: MSNBC reports that the school has invalidated the policy. Now, it will allow all students to run for the office they choose. Interestingly, school officials say that they rotate the races each year and use the policy to ensure minority representation. If this is the school's actual goal, it is legitimate. Nevertheless, it is carried out in a very bad manner. Furthermore, if black students cannot get elected without this policy, then it appears that white students, who outnumber blacks, are engaging in racialized voting (which exists even for adults). The students need lessons on tolerance, not division.