Dr. King’s Dream
February 25, 2010 in Personal
My daughter recently participated in a living museum. It is a part of her third grade social studies agenda.
Students are allowed to represent anyone they want, either living or deceased, as long as they have a book about them in the library. The list to choose from is essential endless. It is a really interesting program. The students stand like statues, with a “button” placed on them. Then students or parents can “hit” the button and the statue begins to talk about the person they are.
The day the third graders selected their person, my daughter called me at my job all excited. The conversation went something like this:
“Mom, did you know we are having a living museum?”
“Yes, I did.”
“And Mom, I got to pick my person today.”
“Really? Who did you pick?”
“She is really famous and important. Her last name is Rice?”
“Rice?” I start scanning the list of names in my head, and come up blank.
“Yes, Rice. I can’t pronounce her first name but it starts with a C.”
Then the blank fills in with the person my daughter selected.
“Do you mean Condoleezza Rice?”
“Yes that’s her.”
I was taken aback to say the least and tried not to laugh. Not that there is anything wrong with Condi Rice. She is a very accomplished person. The thing is, she is black, my daughter is white and the students not only have to represent the person, but dress like them. I thought perhaps she didn’t know what she looked like, but then she showed me the picture she drew of her. Nope, she knew. This was going to be interesting.
I was going to ask her to pick someone else, but she had her heart set on studying Ms. Rice. Every day, she would come home from school and divulge another piece of information she learned about her person. Every day she was more and more excited for the living museum to come so she could talk about Ms. Rice.
We head to the school on the night of the open house for the living museum. They have the parents wait outside as the students assemble in the hallway. The doors open for the attendees to enter. I scan the hall and then see her, my daughter, dressed in a business suit and a black wig. I walk over to her push her button and film her repeating the speech she had prepared on Condoleezza Rice. She does it in a strong clear voice and without any hesitation.
I couldn’t have been more proud.
Before the big day, I asked her why she selected Condoleezza Rice. She responded, “Mom, she’s done a lot of things, and people think she’s important and she seems really nice.”
At that moment, I saw that maybe my daughter’s generation would be it. The generation that judged a person on the content of their character and not the color of their skin.
The one that Dr. King had dreamed of.