By John Vibes / Truth Theory
A fifth-grade teacher from a Detroit area school was reprimanded and told to change her clothes because she was wearing a sweatshirt that said, “Columbus was a murderer,” on Columbus day. Emma Howland-Bolton says she wore the shirt to class because she wanted to spark a discussion about the true history of the holiday.
Emma says that school administrators at Clipper Multicultural Magnet Honors Academy told her that she needed to remove the shirt because she was not allowed to express a political opinion.
A teacher says she wore this shirt to school and found herself at the center of a controversy. Is this shirt a statement of fact or opinion? #ColumbusDay The story on @wxyzdetroit at 6. pic.twitter.com/L5sAJb1dq7
— Kim Russell WXYZ (@kimrussell7) October 14, 2019
“I was informed that my shirt was my opinion and I countered with it is a fact,” she told ABC7.
The Detroit Public Schools Community District issued a statement saying that the teacher will not be facing any discipline, but that she was asked to remove the sweatshirt because it was a violation of the school’s dress code. The statement also noted that the teacher did not submit any type of lesson plan on the subject for pre-approval, which would have been required in a case like this.
Meanwhile, cities and states across the US are choosing to replace “Columbus Day” with “Indigenous Peoples’ Day,” to recognize the true history of conquest and exploitation of native people. In fact, the state of Michigan, which includes Detroit, will soon be voting to make the switch.
In the not-so-distant past, such a thing would be unthinkable, as the propagandized version of the founding of America was widely accepted until just a few years ago. In recent years, more people have been questioning the version of history that they were told in school, and have been seeking out alternative viewpoints, but there is obviously still a great deal of controversy surrounding this issue.
Image credit: Kim Russell WXYZ