Peanut Butter And Jelly Racist? Portland School Principal Ties Sandwich To White Privilege
A lunchtime staple of students for years, the peanut butter and jelly sandwich could be considered one of the more popular items found in the sack lunches of school children.
But in conjunction with recent equity training in local Portland schools, one principal is raising questions about the mention of the sandwich, arguing it has broader implications about race, the Portland Tribune reports.
The sandwich was reportedly mentioned in a lesson plan last year. Verenice Gutierrez from the Harvey Scott K-8 School used it as an example of a subtle form of racism in language, according to the report.
“What about Somali or Hispanic students, who might not eat sandwiches?” Gutierrez said, according to the Tribune. “Another way would be to say: ‘Americans eat peanut butter and jelly, do you have anything like that?’ Let them tell you. Maybe they eat torta. Or pita.”
As part of a training program known as "Courageous Conversations" that has been phased into Portland schools in recent years, the Tribune reports that staff members at Gutierrez's school have been going through trainings, classroom observations and exercises, such as reading a news article and then talking about it from the perspective of “white privilege."
The organization behind the program is Pacific Educational Group. According to the group's website, their aim is to help minority students through initiatives that address racial educational disparities, "intentionally, explicitly, and comprehensively."
Since word of the news spread, however, several bloggers and Twitter users took issue with the claim that a sandwich might be racially charged and deemed the principal's statements absurd.
The author of a post on Twitchy.com wrote that "The sane are quick to rightly mock this latest asinine claim."
The author then featured a selection of tweets mocking the implication that mention of the sandwich has anything to do with race issues:
"[W]hat's the verdict on grilled cheese? Racist? Sexist?" one person tweeted.
"All sandwichs are racist! It's the name "sandwich" the poor tortas are discriminated against!" another wrote.
Robb Cowie, the communications director for Portland Public schools, told Fox News that the district was on board with Gutierrez's comments.
“Persistently we have not done a good enough job educating students of color and specifically African-American students,” Cowie told Fox. "That’s what the program is addressing. How can we find a way to support African American students, their families – so that we are producing better outcomes and narrowing the achievement gap.”
Recent data from the U.S. Department of Education highlighted racial inequity in a survey of 72,000 schools. Minority students faced harsher discipline and were more likely to be taught by lower paid teachers with less experience than white students, according to a press release.
So the takeaway message here is that school principals are too dim to understand the difference between race and nationality?
This is why schools are failing - too much time spent on useless pontificating about non-issues instead of actually just reaching kids, of all races, what they need to know.
This is all the Klan need, a PB&J emblem on their pillowcases to show racial purity.
Why are we even talking about peanuts?!!
PNB was invented by a BM. I think this woman is racist & should be fired. And this is a countdown to 2014 election, she represents the extreme leftwing viewpoint.
[quote]What about Somali or Hispanic students, who might not eat sandwiches?
Tell them to go back to the paradise they came from where they won't be subjected to the horror of a sandwich.
PB&J = privilege?
I'm sorry but immigrants come here so it's on them to learn English and fit in not the other way around. I'm not saying they should become Borg like and forget their culture, history and heritage, but they need to realize they are in a new place with different values, language and customs. Their choice, we don't have to bend over backwards.
If you have grits and fatback you have the negroman.
If you have lox and bagels you have the Jewess
If you have beans and nachos, you have the illegal.
Its funny that for so many years many cultures had Saturday programs to instil their culture in the next generation, much like the Jews have Hebrew school. Now, that seems to be the responsibility of public schools, for all cultures, at all times.
I thought that home-packed lunches were a thing of the past, and that all schoolchildren ate the horrible processed food at the cafeteria.
When in Rome. If they don't like our culture they can go home. Tired of all of the pc bs.
I'm moving to France so I expect all their government forms to be in English or I will sue!
What R5, R7 and R11 said.
LOL at R12. No kidding!!
I scream about PP
If you're gong to achieve anti-racism transformation and eliminate systemic inequity in US culture, you have to be willing to look at everything that can lead to disparate outcomes for minorities.
The privilege that allows whites to see the foods they're used to as "normal" and the diets of others as "strange" is yet another example where children are conditioned to accept a society where white equals good and everyone else is deficient.
Portland is working to become one of the most accepting places in the US, and it's consciousness of the insidious way white privilege works its way into seemingly everyday, mundane items like this that is allowing us to stamp white privilege out.
And why do you think it's called "California" instead of New Cambridge or New England R12?
r16 is one of the freaks for sure.
R16 must be very young.
Does R16 think that black kids don't eat PBJ sammiches? I want some of R16s drugs.
[quote][R16] must be very young.
The young tend to be less racist and homophobic than older people.
[quote]The privilege that allows whites to see the foods they're used to as "normal" and the diets of others as "strange" is yet another example where children are conditioned to accept a society where white equals good and everyone else is deficient.
I think both black and white Americans, and Hispanics who've lived here awhile, would think of a PB&J as normal and torta or the Somali equivalent as other-than-normal. It's a country-emigrated-to v. country-immigrated-from issue rather than anything racial.
R2 What I find hilarious is that a lot of people in my area say they aren't trying to be "racial". WTF? What does that mean? People are so stupid.
Assimilate! It's the new white!
Things like racism are institutionalized. You might not know any bigots. You feel like “well I don’t hate black people so I’m not a racist,” but you benefit from racism.
Just by the color of your skin.
The opportunities that you have, you’re privileged in ways that you might not even realize because you haven’t been deprived of certain things. We need to talk about these things in order for them to change.
Is it the water in Oregon or what? What friggin college did this principal graduate from and just where did he place in the graduating class?
Incidents like this are part of what makes liberals look so foolish to the rest of the US. Stop the idiotic school "policies" and use some common sense.
Pacific Educational Group, just another group getting money in the name of racism from the taxpayer. It is time parents stood up and say no more of this brainwashing of our children.
The tea party contingent has arrive at R28.
I read about the first two sentences. There is nothing here.
Does anyone know any non-white people that eat PBJ sammies? I know PLENTY, including Mexicans who were anchor babies. Sheesh. This woman is mentally ill and should not be a principal in any school.
Ebonics should be accepted as standard American English.
In fact, English should be an elective in the public schools, and then only for literature to study the racist themes that permeate.
Spelling, grammar, and standard usage should not be a factor used to determine advancement to the next grade.
Defending white privilege is mental illness.
Can you all stop even typing the word "peanut"??? My little Tyler and Madison get itchy eyes just from looking at that word!!!
The closed minded have arrived r29.
I don't remember Portland being this stupid when I lived there.
r32 Jean Quan who was on the Oakland School Board who was part of that ebonics debate, and defended ebonics, is now Mayor of Oakland.
FWIW, my bachelor's degree is in German. I've had German and Austrian professors and instructors. I've been to Germany. And I can tell you that one of the things Germans laugh at Americans for is eating peanut-butter sandwiches. They refer to us as Erdnuss fressenden. (And fressen is the verb used for animals eating. When people eat, the word essen is used.) In a conversation class, the instructor wanted us to discuss that day's breakfast. I stated, in German, that I had had a PB&J sandwich for breakfast, and she cracked up laughing.
So, Germans view PB&J as quintessentially American. Does the principal think they're being racist?
[quote]I don't remember Portland being this stupid when I lived there.
I do. Watched it go from a scrappy small city to a pretentious boutique town in just a few years. I'm as liberal as it gets but Portland is really just as small-minded (and single-minded) as any Bible Belt Tea Party burg.
It gets compared to a smaller version of Seattle, but it's really a larger version of Berkeley.
That idiot needs to learn the difference between "race" and "culture", apparently.
You'd never know the U.S. used to be known as a melting pot.
Why is lunch even provided in the public school system? Seriously. Mom's too busy to make a decent lunch for their little darlings? My mother always worked, she had three kids, we all brought lunch from home!
I attended a Catholic school up until 8th grade, then went on to art high school and then art college. During my Catholic school years, My siblings and I lived close enough to walk home for lunch, my grandmother was living with us, she prepared out lunch, in the art schools I brought my lunch from home as did my siblings.
Sure, lunch was available in high school, but I had it a few times, the food was rancid, why the hell would any kid want to eat such crap?
When did this school lunch bullshit even start? The government could save billions eliminating school lunch!
Money spend on free lunches could be put into socialized health care. It's a parent's duty to ensure their children eat well balanced healthy lunches, not the school systems!
If you want to end the income disparity between whites and other minorities, teach then to speak proper English, teach them to dress appropriately for a work environment (that means virtually no indicator of ethnic background), teach them to follow a Western European work ethic, etc. Most of this PC stuff is total crap. My ethnic background is German. I could not get away with wearing Geiger to work let alone actual Trachtenkleidung. Nor could I demand a daily Pausenbrot. And, I am sure my co-workers would rebel if I brought sauerkraut to work. This is a double standard. Everyone gets their knickers in a knot over brown or black minorities, but the rules don't apply if you are perceived as white. The rules should be the same whether you are from Somalia, Hungary, Turkey, Korea, etc. Most of the time "white privilege" is just tearing one group down to make another group feel better instead of bring the lower (and I did say lower, get over it) up to the level of the first group.
R43 is hilariously clueless... talk about white privilege.
White privilege is like an invisible weightless knapsack of special provisions, maps, passports, code books, visas, clothes, tools and blank checks.
It's time to unpack the invisible knapsack.
Oh, good fucking Lord.
About 20 years ago someone who, like myself, is a Detroit native, ID me because I ate and love PB&J sandwiches.
White privilege my black ass.
Now PB&J as an American staple, yes.
I love pb&j - so sue me Ms. Gutierrez!
In the early 1900s, peanut butter was considered a delicacy that was only served in New York City's finest tearooms. The product was first paired with a diverse set of foods such as pimento, nasturtium, cheese, celery, watercress, and on toasted crackers. In a Good Housekeeping article published in May 1896, a recipe "urged homemakers to use a meat grinder to make peanut butter and spread the result on bread." In June of that same year, the culinary magazine Table Talk published a "peanut butter sandwich recipe." The first reference of peanut butter paired with jelly on bread was rumored to be published in the United States by Julia Davis Chandler in 1901. By the late 1920s, this sandwich eventually moved down the class structure as the price of peanut butter dropped. It became popular with children. During World War II, it is said that both peanut butter and jelly were found on U.S. soldiers' military ration list, as claimed by the Peanut Board.
wikipedia entry on the origin of the peanut butter and jelly sandwich.
I see what Principal Guiterrez is attempting to do but white privilege is not involved with this.
PB & J is an American thing.
All of this is the kind of shit that floats to the top of the Datalounge cesspool when there is nothing else to read.
I thought this was going to be about people that want to ban peanuts were racist because black kids eat peanut butter sandwiches.
The privilege that allows whites to see the [quote]foods they're used to as "normal" and the diets of others as "strange" is yet another example where children are conditioned to accept a society where white equals good and everyone else is deficient.
Smuggest post ever.
I have news for you... this very same "privilege" that you disdain allows "others" to see their diets as "normal" and the foods of "whites" as strange.
It's simple human nature one views one's own culture and traditions as normal and anything else as strange, as in unknown, different than what you are used to. And so what?
Imagine a world without white privilege. The system that deems Caucasian features and white skin as a status symbol has lead to some of the greatest atrocities in human history: genocide, slavery, imperialism, and the mass incarceration and systematic murder of people of color all over the world.
"The privilege that allows whites to see the foods they're used to as "normal" and the diets of others as "strange" is yet another example where children are conditioned to accept a society where white equals good and everyone else is deficient."
Bullshit. Americans eat pizza, hummus and pita, tacos galore, kebabs/gyros, strip-mall sushi and bulgogi. They've been eating Chinese food for about 75 years and Thai for about 20. DC where I am from has a lot of Ethiopian restaurants patronized by many different ethnic groups.
America may discriminate, but not with food. This lady is living in the 50s if she thinks that Americans stigmatize the diets of others as strange.
I actually lived in Somalia during a short period of my childhood. Food there was a mixed bag -- spaghetti reflecting the Italian colonial era, tea the British. Skinny, inexpertly plucked chicken cooked cacciatore style, barbecued goat, camel milk smoked and kept from spoiling with a drop of camel blood.
PBJ is really not bad and Somalis should not mind.
Why is this posted on a gay message board? So a bunch of gay white supremacists can have a laugh?
That is fascinating, R55. Can you tell us about the years of your childhood spent in Somalia sampling these dishes? Were you ever published at that time? Did you ever type out a message via Telex using your pencil? It must have been a very interesting time for you!
[quote]So a bunch of gay white supremacists can have a laugh?
Hey we enjoy a good laugh as much as anyone else.
Well. R56, there's always Matt Bomer's thong for you to weigh in on. DL handles all kind of topics.
r56 the entire board voted for Obama, twice. How is that racist or white supremacist? In fact POC have responded on this thread and said they ate PBJ.
The racist is that woman, Victoria Gutierrez.
[quote] I thought this was going to be about people that want to ban peanuts were racist because black kids eat peanut butter sandwiches.
That would make a lot more sense.
"[R43] is hilariously clueless... talk about white privilege."
White privilege? LOOOOL, you figured that out from one post?
First off, you couldn't be more off base. This too fucking funny. I am African-American, I was born and grew up in Bushwick Brooklyn before it became colonized by wealthy foreigners and wealthy hipsters from other states.
My parents both worked and, yes, my siblings and I brought our own lunch from home. My mom would also make creating our lunches fun. We actually looked forward to making our lunches every night. We all had cool lunch boxes and when we were too old for lunch boxes, we used small brown paper bags my mom bought from the supermarket.
Why must schools provide lunch? The education is free so why must the lunch be? We certainly live in a lazy-ass 'take care of me' society!
r62, you had good parents. Lots of kids have lowlife parents or absent ones. Would you feel better if they spent the day hungry?
R62/63. I would go the other direction. Have school lunch mandatory. Have only one choice. Have the students eat at a table with their homeroom teacher and aid.
And while I am at it, if they want to improve the grades of minorities, make the max. class size 20 students. No exceptions.
The world's leading expert on the peanut was an American scientist, botanist, educator, and inventor. Dr. George Washington Carver. He was born into slavery, probably in June 1864.
Carver's reputation is based on his research into and promotion of alternative crops to cotton, such as peanuts, soybeans and sweet potatoes, which also aided nutrition for farm families. He wanted poor farmers to grow alternative crops both as a source of their own food and as a source of other products to improve their quality of life. The most popular of his 44 practical bulletins for farmers contained 105 food recipes using peanuts.
He also developed and promoted about 100 products made from peanuts that were useful for the house and farm, including cosmetics, dyes, paints, plastics, gasoline, and nitroglycerin. He received numerous honors for his work, including the Spingarn Medal of the NAACP.
P & J sandwiches were invented by GIs during World War II. It has nothing to do with white privilege.
R12 is a creepy little nonpaying cunt who posts complaints about other posters' interests on other threads and has nothing to say for her miserable self otherwise except that she is a nasty little anti-immigrant shithead.
The stalking ill-motivated trash at r67 has the nerve to call anyone else "creepy"?
The Aztecs were known to have made peanut butter from ground peanuts in the 15th century.
[quote]The stalking ill-motivated trash at [R67] has the nerve to call anyone else "sexy"?
r12's sarcasm made an excellent point, which is what prompted r67's little hissyfit.
I think this is the epitome of what mindless "progressivism" (I refuse to sully the word "liberal" to describe the morons that think this is not laughable) has wrought.
Instead of working to secure civil liberties, end wars (foreign and domestic) and stop corporate control of our government, they waste time on bullshit like this.
No wonder people laugh at "regressives" these days. Anyone who can defend bullshit like this is retarded.
Are all the students in Verenice Gutierrez's school getting "A" average? Is that why the stupid woman has time for this type of garbage?
Exactly r71. I love the word liberal, even after it's been demonized for years. It represents the values I believe in - and all those values are defensible. But incidents like this are just racially obsessed kookery.
I agree, R71. I don't know if it is clueless self-righteousness and stupidity, or what. I am starting to wonder if they are somehow funded by the right to distract people from real issues - as you mention "civil liberties, end wars (foreign and domestic) and stop corporate control of our government," while also making liberals look foolish.
No, R68 and R70, this hissyfitter was leaving a calling card for R12, who posted a little stab on another thread that came across as homophobic. SInce this cunt only snipes and here made a tacitly irrelevant point - sorry you thought it was insightful, but it was merely setting up a straw man - I wanted her to know that her hit-and-run crap is obvious.
Carry on, now, complaining and snarking about the American tradition of the sandwich and how falafel is unamerican. Asses.
This shit just gives Rush Limbaugh and the Fox crew ammunition to make fun of liberals/progressives. With their wackos in fundie land acting up for the last 8 years or so, we've been able to present ourselves as the sane alternative, so I hate it when people supposedly on our side do this.
r75, that may be so about what was said in another thread, but the best way to respond is to make your point in that thread. r12's post here was a good one -- essentially, that if you move somewhere, it's not the reponsibility of the locals to change for you.
Are there exemptions for transgenders, Hispanics, and union workers?
R73 and R74
Thanks. Why do you think young people like me are supporting Ron Paul? We can see through the bullshit that calls itself liberal and see what real liberalism looks like.
I am half Mexican and I grew up eating sandwiches. Sometimes they were peanut butter sandwiches. I was given this food not just at my white mom's house, but also at my immigrant father's house. Sometimes these sandwiches were even made for me by my grandmother who wasn't fluent in English.
White privilege is very real in this country, and every time some idiot SJW like this woman invokes the phrase for stupidity it just undermines the whole concept in many peoples eyes. She is as bad as those fools on Tumblr whining about white people with dreadlocks.
I'd never seen SJW before. Thanks for that, r80.
Fuck dem shaniquas. I be eatin my PB-ass sandwich.
Is a baguette racist in Paris?
They need more Hispanics up there to balance out their PC gone crazy attitude.
SJW is a new one for me: Social Justice Warrior--pejorative. No doubt of right wing origins. Use with care.
If I lived in a community that had a school principal like that, I'd be going to school board meetings to get the bitch fired. She needs to be replaced with an educator who isn't tainted with a warped racist attitude.
The problem with this is that there really is subtle racism, sexism, homophobia, etc. (in addition to their non-subtle counterparts) in the world. But, claims like this just add to the view that any "ism" accusation is crazy.
The term "white privilege" is a deal breaker for me. (see: MHP @ MSNBC, and the similar "professional negress" at Daily Kos for examples of bitter women-of-colour.)
True r88. The term is like "new world order" "jewish bankers" or some other Alex Jones favorite. You know the person using it is a loon.
Melissa Harris-Perry is an angry whack job.
Maybe it's harder for me to get upset about this because I dislike the taste of peanuts (and peanut butter).
I'm thinking bean burrito sounds like a good alternative.
MHP is relentlessly "up," even when she's speaking in opposition. When I watch her show, I sometimes wish she would "cheer down" already. Not a good candidate for "angry black woman"
No shit, R90
I watched her "your children are not yours to control" video and realized she's not just a whackjob cunt, but a DANGEROUS whackjob cunt who needs to be put in a high security psych ward.
Why do progressives allow psychos like that to represent them on TV? No wonder the Tea Party thinks Dems are evil.
MHP has disdain for white people, even her own mother. She tried starting a race riot with Joan Walsh, a woman who wrote the book "What's The Matter With White People?". There was another political writer she did the same thing too. His name escapes me at the moment.
Perry has a big chip on her shoulder. She's dangerous to the left because of it. She's also always scolding white people for messing with black culture. She went nuts over the "Harlem Shake". Should we have blacks refrain from doing dances invented by white people?
The moment any Democrat called Obama out for siding with Republicans, she turned around and called all of them racists, saying that they never spoke up when Bill Clinton did it. That's such a load of horseshit and she knows it. This is not the 1990s. It's post-9/11, post-Bush, with a new generation, and an old generation that learned from its mistakes. Yes, don't call the president out for doing the wrong thing, you dumb crackers! She's made Al Sharpton not look like an opportunist. I'd listen to him (and he can barely speak) over her any day now.
[quote]Why do you think young people like me are supporting Ron Paul? We can see through the bullshit that calls itself liberal and see what real liberalism looks like.
I assume you support an ignorant homophobic bigot because you are one also R71/79.
And he also hates women and the poor which I assume you agree with.
Verenice objects to peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, but is first in line when they serve ham with red eye gravy and black eyed peas, with watermelon for dessert.
R43 is a twerp. Some children are so poor they don't get food outside of school. I worked in schools like this and the better thing to do would be for school lunches to be nutritious and tasty. That way these children and others get proper nutrition to grow and to be able to focus on their schoolwork.
R95, your delusions reach the 5150 level.
Ron Paul is not misogynistic, homophobic, racist or "anti-poor".
It takes a lot of brainwashing for someone to become as twisted as you obviously are.