Does Race Have Anything to do With It?

The link below is a news article in the Hartford Courant regarding a member of the Northwest Catholic High School basketball team (my high school which I graduated from).

http://www.courant.com/sports/high-schools/hc-zach-lewis-0210-20120209,0,2674229.story

Zach Lewis was dismissed from the team as a result of an issue that occurred completely outside of school. The school was not obligated to kick him off of the team since the incident did not happen on school grounds. However, he is no longer a member of the team as a result of the event. Two years ago, three members of the girls soccer team were caught drinking at a school function. Two of the girls were so intoxicated they had to be sent to the hospital from the school event. These girls were suspended from school for two days, but were never kicked off of their soccer team. The following year they were all made captains for the team as well.

When my parents told me about what happened to Zach I could not help but think about how the issue of race plays into a situation such as this. The three girls who were never kicked off their team are all White, while Zach is African American. It did not seem fair to me that they were allowed to continue to play on their sports team, and were even made captains after they did get in trouble at a school event. Zach’s incident occurred completely outside of school yet he was dismissed from his team. In my opinion, I couldn’t help but find the two punishments completely unequal and unfair. How is it that the White individuals only lost out on a couple days of school yet the Black student lost his privileged to play basketball for his team? I understand that all situations differ in severity and student’s punishments are given accordingly. What I do not understand is how Zach’s incident occurred completely outside of school yet the three girls were at a school function and received a lesser punishment in my opinion. Does this situation fit in with our discussion of what aversive racism is or does it seem to walk the line of racism that is far more overt? I should also ask, does this occurrence have anything to do with race at all or is it simply a “private matter” as the coach claims in his comments to the newspaper?

1 thought on “Does Race Have Anything to do With It?

  1. This post seems to reflect something that is very common. While we may see this as being openly honest, an aversive racist would see this as not being racist. This seems to be something that would be classified by an aversive racist as something that had nothing to do with race. I could see in this situation someone saying that they did not even realize that Zach was black but rather that what he did was “more serious.” While this appears to be an act that has to do with race because the other female students were simply suspended for an act on school property, this student committed an act outside of school, aversive tacit would deny this at all costs.

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