Course: Spring 22 – Journalism: Feature Writing

Reflections on Southlake Podcast – Episodes 1& 2

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    • #11223

      Syreeta McFadden
      Participant

      For this week (2.28.22-3.7.22), we’re thinking out loud about challenging the dominant narrative, or assumed story of a hot button, social, political, and cultural issue. Southlake is a limited series looking at what Katherine Boo writes about in “Difficult Journalism”. Keep some of those points in mind as you listen to episodes 1 and 2.

      Try to deepen your analysis beyond a summary of the episode and pick a specific segment from one of the episodes and highlight the questions the host poses to his interview subjects. Share how those questions he raises challenge your beliefs about what had happened. Are there new questions that come up for you? What has changed about your understanding of this subject? What new things did you learn?

    • #11281

      I listened to both segments of the podcast, and based on my recollection, there were no significantly revealing instances where the interviewer asked a question that elicited a challenging response. The first of two challenging moments is in the first episode, when Robin Cornish — along with several other parents of color — describe the racism directed towards their children by white children at Southlake High School. The second was 17-year-old Raven Rolle’s disturbing encounter with a white student who refused to admit wrongdoing after casually using a racial slur in her presence. This is all a pretext to the contentious issue of teaching critical race theory at a public high school, and the suggestion by some (largely, if not exclusively white) parents that racism does not exist in Southlake and that even discussing the possibility it does is cause for its very existence. Clearly, this is not an issue of free speech, or educational or states’ rights — it is a system of racial oppression that affects a minority group of people, and the majority for whom it benefits sees no reason to alter its design.

    • #11292

      After listening to both episodes of SOUTHLAKE you hear the major influence that racism has in these communities, bringing to question is Blacks in America really on an even playing field of equality even though slavery and supposedly segregation ended so many years ago. Hearing these stories of vandalism of an African American males memorial and kids, parents going through racism even the educators being called terms that is outright disrespectful and clearly a form of hate speech and racism. The story where the young girl brought it to the principles attention that their is clear forms of racism in the school, and says that he wants and it should be a safe place of learning and that the girl deserved that right to not go through that kind of torment, I agree with her whole heartedly that he was indirectly trying to fluff and sugarcoat the situation from what it clearly was racism. The social Media situation with the snap getting uploaded with white kids shouting the N word as they say, that situation they wanted it taken down but no real punishment I felt wanted to be given just to have it brushed under the rug and forgotten. Why do even little kids children which is supposedly at the age of innocence is walking up to a little black girl saying they cant play with her because the color of her skin, or the boy having pencil led nudge and broken in his skull having another child say he’s black and he has tough skin so he should be able to endure it. The worse part of it all the problem isn’t just with the teens and children it comes from the home and should be just as much as the parents fault especially when some of these parents couldn’t even get as much of a I’m sorry or any form of apology that these situations may live on in some form of trauma for the kids and the parents of those kids. The question I have today is if these situations are still being addressed and have plans to be resolved in a foreseeable future or are they going to get swept under the rug. What are the people doing for change in the community?, and if they even want change?

    • #11293

      Shannon Williams
      Participant

      South Lake is a moving documentary that did an excellent job asking questions that many are scared to ask. Upon listening to this podcast, It begged the question of why racism and the lack of diversity is still an issue that is occurring, especially in suburban areas? Listening to the racial slurs used in reference to black students was disheartening; I began to question their cultural teachings because I can guarantee that a majority of the parents of the white students are racists. Within the confinement of their own homes, they more than likely belittle black people. These white supremacists have soiled Franks’ vision of diversity and inclusion. I found it interesting that the school’s motto is “everyone is a dragon,” but what they mean is every one that is white because black students don’t fit into the “melting pot”; they are singled out and treated as less than by their peers, and it almost feels like when black students walk into that school they are going back in time. Robin, daughter of Raven and her late father Frank, experienced a lot of racism while attending that school, and I was bothered when she mentioned that she got used to it because that is not something that anyone should have to get used to. While Raven was in kindergarten, she was told by two white girls that “they couldn’t play with her because her skin was brown.” There is no way that in kindergarten, those two young girls felt that way on their own that was all taught through their cultural teachings. This is infuriating because embedding those ignorant ideals into the impressionable minds of children is terrible. In the process, you are teaching white children to feel superior to black children and teaching black children that they are inferior and that being isolated and addressed with racist slurs is normal.

      The administrators of the school often brushed racist incidents aside. They failed to administer the proper punishment to the perpetrators, which enabled the behavior of the white students because they knew that they would get away with it. The students failed to realize that the slurs they used were wrong and harmful; it was “normal” to use them. The parents of the white students also denied that the school was racist. While listening, I kept asking myself why black students are treated as if they were of a different species? We all have the same bodily functions, organs, and we all bleed the same, yet why does it all come down to the social construction of race. We all have different physical traits, yet the only difference acknowledged and deemed problematic to white people is dark skin; why? What is it about darker complexions that appear threatening? Why do the kinks and coils of our hair “devalue” our existence as humans? These were some of the questions that I asked myself while listening to the podcast, and I’m sure the black students who endured the racism at this school also asked themselves these questions. I believe the answer to be that those white students were taught to be hateful, and rather than ridding themselves of that cultural ideal taught to them, they constitute to live in ignorance. Holding those students accountable is extremely important, and the fact that not one student has been issued an apology by their perpetrators is upsetting and unacceptable.

    • #11302

      fenellah
      Participant

      The ” Southlake” podcast hosted by Mike Hixenbaugh and Antonia Hylton tells the story of a Taxes suburb became the center of attention over a critical race theory. After listening to the 1st episode names the “Home of the Dragons”. it was obvious what the episode was about. and the first challenge to me was the fact that Robin Cornish, lose her husband, while living in such a racist community, that her husband had worked so hard. this community that suppose to be supportive, welcoming and inclusive to another. and I think it was also more challenging for her dealing with all the racism her children had to face in school. and I believe it was the same feeling to so many other black parent or mix- race parents that live in that community or who children went to that school. but it also did not surprised me that much, because this is the racial system manner that is presently affecting the black community. they get attacked for attending good and decent schools to make a better life for themselves. and in the future after all that hard work and they went to live in a nice community. they get attack or they police will be called on them.

      And after listing to 2nd episode “just a word” with all the racial video’s that surfaces on the internet of white students, using the N word yet nothing much was done to stop it from happening. The parents of the white students fail their children. because they fail to teach their children to be sensitive to other children feelings. and i also think that the School Administration fail the  black students, by not taking serious action over the complaint of the students. and even when the teacher where made a wear of the situation that was going on, yet no action or punishment was given to the students that where at fault. The most challenging part for me in the episode was when a teacher, decided to give 100% to the student that where on suspension for using racial slang. in front of the 17 year old black student called Raven. the fact that non of these student acknowledge to their wrong doing or even give apologies for the things they say. or the fact that their parents never apologies for the wrongs of their children. show how litter or not they care about the situation.

    • #11315

      Syreeta McFadden
      Participant

      In case you might be interested, here’s a video of a panel discussion with the reporters discussing Southlake. https://www.nbcuacademy.com/catalog/southlake-podcast-critical-race-theory

    • #11317

      Johnny Bautista
      Participant

      South Lake a city that is predominantly white folks that shares a propaganda of diversity and inclusion. As we digest what has happened after the death of Frank, we come to unravel hatred and racism.  There were incidents where black students were told discomforting sayings by fellow peers which led to questioning what has changed within the city. It is uncanny to hear about the vandalism of Franks plaque, to even deter someone with a threat was a major breaking point that should’ve increase supervision to the entire community to ensure safety. The questions that were asked throughout the first episode were appropriate. My only question to the community would have been “why are you resisting change?”.

      Continuing the interview, we can explicitly see that the South Lake school has perceived racism as a trivial issue. Students were allowed to do and say racist things with minor repercussion. As the diversity council was held to relegate exclusion and ensure students are taught to respect each other. Students in South lake were justifying that the n-word has no meaning behind and how it was unfair that black students were allowed to say it yet they can’t. As the plan to deteriorate racism, covid happened.

    • #11365

      Brillana Perez
      Participant

      South Lake Is a city located near Dallas, Texas. In the podcast, “SouthLake” it tells the story of Frank and Robbin Cornish life there. It started off about how Frank Cornish loved Southlake and wanted to make it his own. He wanted to become mayor and make it better. However, he was unable to do that and shortly after his death the town showed their true colors. A community with a lack of diversity showed the racism upon them. Robin and Franks kids were told racial comments and slur by other kids. As these racial comments continued Robbin Cornish started to recall al the racial incidents that have occurred over the years. This was something that’s been going on in Southlake for a very long time and when discussed it was brushed off.

    • #11460

      Arturo Mota
      Participant

      South Lake is a city in Texas, near Dallas. “SouthLake” is a podcast that relates the tale of Frank and Robbin Cornish’s life in the area. It all started with Frank Cornish’s love for Southlake and his desire to make it his own. He aspired to be mayor and improve the city. He was unable to do so, and the town’s true colors were exposed long after his death. South Lake is a city in the state of Texas, close to Dallas. The podcast “SouthLake” tells the story of Frank and Robbin Cornish’s life in the area. Frank Cornish’s affection for Southlake and desire to make it his own began with his wish to make it his own. He desired to be mayor and make the city a better place. He was unable to do so, and the true colors of the town were revealed long after his death.

    • #11553

      Tanbir
      Participant

      After listening to both episode, the Southlake podcast teaches us that never take anyone for granted you never know a good man can change a whole lot of things. Frank Cornish’s dream was to be the mayor of Southlake but never got the chance to do it, his love for that state was insane he wanted to help out his people and make it easier for them but he never got the chance to do that. After his death people started knowing the person he was and what Southlake was meant to him.

    • #11863

      Brenda
      Participant

      <span style=”font-weight: 400;”>South lake city is located in Texas which is home to ¾ of whites.In 2020 ⅔ backed trump.Less than 2% are colored people.In south lake city it seems like racism towards minorities especially black people is a norm to that city.C Cap (SCOC) was made in order to make kids accountable for their actions but many parents objected to this plan due to the fact that they thought it wasn’t a good enough plan to be enforced on the school.The first story started off with a balck couple Frank and Robin Cornish who moved to south lake city but as time went on they soon saw the different side of the town which is not what they expected.Though Frank wanted to be mayor to make the city better his dream later became non existing after his death in his town.Though you would think they would’ve left the family alone even after the death of Frank his plaque was vandalized and both Frank and Robins kids were called racial slurs by other kids.Though this really didn’t surprise me because the majority of this city which is 2/3 backed Trump.My question would be is why let this city be so racist we’re in the 21st century we shouldn’t be acting like we’re still in the 19th century. </span>

      <span style=”font-weight: 400;”> In the second episode you would also think with the racial videos surfacing around the internet parents would teach their kids about racism and agree to let the school district implement their plan in order to make kids accountable for their actions.in the broadcast thought kids were calling raven who was a 17 year old high school student racial slurs the kids made it seems like it was nothing serious to them.And though Raven made it clear to them as well as the principle that the word made her feel bad she was informed if the kids were punished for their actions instead they were more concerned on her reaction and the principle just made a speech on not using other words but doesn’t mention anything about the word that was used again this isn’t something that surprises me especially in south lake city where it home to majority of white racist people especially since this city is only 2% people of color.</span>

      • This reply was modified 2 days, 11 hours ago by Brenda.
      • This reply was modified 2 days, 11 hours ago by Brenda.
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