“I go on and on, can’t understand how I last so long, I must have superpowers.” – Too $hort
At a recent principals meeting, Nashville’s director of schools Dr. Shawn Joseph played the above lyrics by rapper Too $hort. What came next exceeded all manner of ridiculous. School board member Jill Speering filed a civil rights complaint against the director – just a few weeks after she filed an ethics complaint. Believe it or not, there have been calls for the director’s job.
The incredible lack of focus and misdirected priorities prompted a friend, who shall remain anonymous, to give me permission to publish her scathing rebuke of the rap song farce.
WARNING: If you can’t hang with the big dogs, stay on the porch. – also, Too $hort
Only 25 percent of students from Metro Schools in 2011 went on to earn a college degree.
Two out of three third graders leave the grade off-track in reading.
These inequities and underperformance have been going on for the past six years while school board member Jill Speering has been in her seat. But what led her to #blowthewhistle on Dr. Joseph recently? A Too $hort song called Blow The Whistle.
That’s right. Too $hort.
If you grew up in the 70s or 80s you may know of Too $hort. He was an early rapper – and can often be described as someone who put down beats so good that you sometimes liked his songs in spite of their lyrics. Too $hort – like Tupac, Jay Z, Eazy E, the Notorious BIG – and most heroic features from Odysseus to our Founding Fathers – is complicated. He creates incredible beats, has some incredible lyrics, and unfortunately, some misogynistic ones.
Too $hort’s lyrics are as full of misogyny as our school system is of racism. He is responsible for playing a part in a sexist society. But you know what Too $hort is not responsible for? Educational inequity, low literacy rates, and political distractions.
You know who is responsible for that? The school board officials (like Ms. Speering) who focus on Too $hort instead of kids in 3rd grade not learning to read.
You know what we need to do about that?