HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — The showing of a controversial video for Black History Month has sparked a big debate amongst the community at Glen Allen High School.
The animated video, which was presented by a VCU graduate to the entire student body, showed men and women, both black and white, running a race through American history.
The black students get a late start and face countless obstacles throughout the race. Meanwhile, the white male gets older and passes his riches from generation to generation. At the end, the white male easily wins the race with the while female placing second. The black competitors finish last.
One mother, whose child attends Glen Allen High, told 8News she is outraged, claiming the clip is divisive and racist. Another mom told us she felt the video was age appropriate and could spark a meaningful discussion about race.
Kenny Manning, a student at Glen Allen High, said the video was an eyeful.
“A lot of people thought it was offensive to white people and made them feel bad about being privileged,” Manning told 8News reporter Jonathan Costen. “Others thought that it was good to get the information out there. There is oppression going on in the world, and it that needs to be looked at with a magnifying glass, I guess.”
Manning said he was offended by the video, but doesn’t think it was harmful to the student body.
I feel like our student body gets along pretty well; there are virtually no fight at Glen Allen High School, and that’s something we should all be proud of,” he said. “There’s definitely no racially-motivated things that happen.”
In a statement to 8News, spokesperson Andy Jenks said school officials welcome any feedback and will address concerns “directly as they come forward.”
The students participated in a presentation that involved American history and racial discourse. The video was but one component of a thoughtful discussion in which all viewpoints were encouraged. As always, we are welcoming of feedback from students and their families, and we address concerns directly as they come forward.