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Racial Tension in Schools

June 23, 1991

Racial tensions are reaching a boiling point in the schools. Blacks, Latinos, Asians and whites are all fearful and resentful of each other. So they pick on the nerds, dweebs and small classmates. I know this sounds like a joke, but the small, funny-looking kids fear for their lives at some of our schools. They are a new minority and they are being abused. You can smack a nerd and not be racist.

The real issue is violence on the campus. I think our kids can live with tension; they can't live safely with violence. The schools can't control it. It's far easier for the educators to deny that there is a problem.

You can't force kids to be nice to one another. But we do have to find a disciplinary measure with some teeth in it to apply to the kids who are beating up people. Suspension is just a free day to some of these teen-agers. Maybe we should keep them on campus and make them (oh, what a bummer) work.

STEPHANIE GOODMAN-TAYLOR, Los Alamitos

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