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Page 7 of Kentucky Negro Educational Association Journal v.22 n.1

Part of Kentucky Negro Educational Association Journal

IUTEGRATION WHITNEY M. YOUNG Now that integration is becoming a reality, a great many people are beginning to ask a few questions about the meaning of integration. Today, in our thinking, we always begin on the premise: you must tear down the Negro project, whatever it is. I would like to ask a question; in all sincerity, are we in favor of closing out all Negro news- papers, insurance companies, law offices, barring the doors to Negro dentists and doctors and the closing of all Negro schools, including elemen- tary and high schools? Any group of people who would deliberately black-list their own race and institutions does not deserve to live or to have the respect of other people. The Englishman, the Frenchman, the Italian, the Indian, the Japanese, the Chinese, the Mexican, the Philippino, the German and the Russian, all seek to maintain with dignity and grace their racial heritage and self-respect We must beware lest the theory of integration becomes the flame for extinguishing 90 per cent of all job opportunities for the future educated Negro. I am not opposed to integration, but I want integration to take place on both sides of the fence. I do not want any group to have the final say about where, when, and what type of education our children shall have. The Negro teacher, preacher, doctor, lawyer, dentist, businessman has done the most marvel- ous job of any, group of persons in the world when you consider the handicaps involved. In our haste to criticize we forget the tragic influence of slavery. We forget the terrible poverty and misery of the Negro home, the starvation salary of teachers for generations, and the time when the only voice that could be heard in the wilderness of reconstruction was the voice of the Negro preacher and journalist. We forget the long, weary years of exploita' tion when Negro women and men were the only launderers, the only sunup to sundown farmers. We also forget the blind alleys into which millions of our people were led by gullible idiots who grew fat and rich at the expense of the poor and ignorant Negro. We forget those bankrupt Negro organizations that collected millions of dollars from our poor and gave them nothing in return except a badge, button, ribbon, cane or sword which they might bequeath to their heirs as mementoes of an era when the blind led the blind and all men were slaves to a system that meant poverty and early death for all. As we face our tomorrow, let it not be without hope. If we must burn tomorrow, let's not fail to get the most out of today. Behind all our doubts and fears there can be the unchanging faith of Evangeline Booth. When someone asked her if she ever doubted God, she replied: "Yes, when my mother died after months of suffering from cancer, I doubted God. When my dear father went blind and lingered for years, I doubted God. But," said she, "He wouldn't be much of a God if I could understand Him." We can rest assured that truth and justice will triumph in the end. If there are Negro schools now in operation with good physical plants or the potentialities for building a good physical plant, we should do everything within our power to bring about integration within that plant. There are any number of examples to prove that for many years to come there will be a large number of Negro students who will find it socially and economically to their advantage to attend a college that is made up largely of their own people. In fact, in any community where there are Negro and white schools, I think some consideration should be given to the idea of integrating other races into the Negro schools as well as integrating Negroes into other schools. OTHER NEW SCHOOL BUILDINGS Soon our cover page will carry pictures of High School, and Mr. H. E. Goodloe, principal several new school buildings now under con- of Western High School, Owensboro, Kentucky, struction. announce that they bave new buildings under A new high school is under construction at construction. Benham, Kentucky, and will soon be ready for occupancy. The faculty, under the leadership Mr. C. B. Nuckolls, principal of Booker of Principal J. A. Matthews, will be increased Washington High School, Ashland, Kentucky, from nine to eleven teachers. announces the opening of a new home economics Mr. L. J. Twyman, principal of Glasgow building on his school grounds. 7

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