When is racism not racism? When it is racism in favor of the politically preferred:
There’s a bulletin board at the front of the band room at Spring Lake Park High covered in portraits of the composers who wrote this year’s music selection.
The bulletin board isn’t new — it’s there every year. What’s new are the faces: Instead of primarily white men, there are faces of women and composers of color.
This is intentional. The band directors at Spring Lake Park, outside of St. Paul, Minn., have pledged to include at least one piece by a female composer and one by a composer of color in each concert, for each of the school’s bands.
“We made a commitment this year to only buy music from composers of color,” says Brian Lukkasson, one of the directors.
Anyone who actually believes that discrimination works against “marginalized” groups rather than in their favor is invited to imagine how long Lukkasson would keep his job if he said he would buy music only from white composers.
[Student Kia] Muleta, who is black, has been playing the clarinet … since fifth grade, and says the students sitting around her are usually white. She says it bothers her that the composers they used to play were usually white too.
Yet she does not take her clarinet to a country where blacks make up more than 13% of the population. I wonder why.
Selecting composers based on their not being white will have a predictable effect on the quality of music.
On a tip from Steve T.