Teaching kids about diversity

Morris Dees, Esq. Civil Rights Attorney, shares advice for parents on how they can teach their kids about diversity and the benefits it has on society
Teaching Kids About Diversity - Parenting Tips
KidsInTheHouse the Ultimate Parenting Resource
Kids in the House Tour

Teaching kids about diversity

We live in pretty homogenous communities . Our school are pretty much re-segregated after segregated things. Most kids go to private school that is pretty much now why and pretty much in there own ways. The public schools are pretty much with teens who are black like in big cities like Los Angeles and Philadelphia, Chicago, and Atlanta and people really do not have opportunity to mix very much and if the parents of young people have all friends, relatives, and people come and visit them of the same race, the same color, the same economic background, that is what children will only think about and not growing up understanding and walk in the shoes who is somewhat different than they are. I grew up on a small cotton farm where my community was about half black and half white and we went in black people's home and sat down and ate and most people did not but my parents had no problem with that and so I had a chance to understand black people and that was the other side of the whites and black in the South at that time. There was no Latinos or hardly knows Jews hardly now by any different and understand to learn in this people. On the other hand, most young people do not go into other neighborhoods and so parents should figure out a way to get there kids involve with people that are not in there own group; there own racial and ethnic group and that is difficult. It is not easy to do. There is some barriers on both side that keep that from happening so it takes an effort to do that. You have to go into girl's and boy's club and the part of town that you may not be familiar with and they can and make a friend here. Go to a camp somewhere that is not some very expensive camp that only the rich kids can go to. They go in different kind of Camp, the YMCA Camp that only cost $200 the whole week, meeting somebody different and make a friend. These are very different things to do because we live in a very segregated society. If not many people that makes beyond racial and ethnic group, and the religious bounds in the United States and today when we do have so much tension in this Country, we call Islamic terrorist for example. All the Islamic people are not terrorist. It is like saying Baptists are terrorist because Timothy McVeigh is a Baptist and blew up a building. This stereotypes that we are using how many young people have been to a mosque? You know what the mosque it is. It is where the terrorist all hang out. No. It is not where the terrorist totally hang out. They were good people practicing there religion and faith go so it is hard work for the parent. It is easy to just live your life and just do things you did growing up and your kids ends up doing that too unless they are extremely unusual kids and breaks out on there own so it is a really challenge to be a parent to raise a very empathetic kid who is not bias

Morris Dees, Esq. Civil Rights Attorney, shares advice for parents on how they can teach their kids about diversity and the benefits it has on society


Expert Bio

More from Expert

Morris Dees, Esq.

Civil Rights Attorney

Morris Dees was born in 1936 in Shorter, Alabama, the son of cotton farmers. As a young boy he worked the fields with blacks, witnessing first-hand social and economic depravation and Jim Crow treatment at its worst. While at the University of Alabama Law School, he met Millard Fuller. The two formed a highly successful publishing company during their time in law school. After graduation, they moved the business to Montgomery, Alabama.  Fuller left the company in 1965 and later founded Habitat for Humanity. Mr. Dees continued the business and also began taking controversial civil rights cases. Mr. Dees sold his publishing company to a major national firm in 1970 and formed the Southern Poverty Law Center, along with Julian Bond and Joseph Levin. Early Center cases included integrating the Alabama State Troopers and desegregating the Montgomery YMCA. The Center, funded by donations from over 300,000 citizens across the nation, quickly grew into one of America’s most successful and innovative public interest law firms. In 1980, the Center founded the Intelligence Project in response to resurgence in organized racist activity. The project monitors hate groups and develops legal strategies for protecting citizens from violence-prone groups. A made-for-television movie about Mr. Dees aired on NBC; “Line of Fire” describes his successful fight against the Ku Klux Klan. It included the $7 million precedent-setting judgment against the United Klans of America on behalf of the mother of Michael Donald, a young black man lynched by the Klan in Mobile, Alabama. Wayne Rogers portrayed him in the feature film, “Ghosts of Mississippi,” about the murder of civil rights worker Medgar Evers. Other victories against hate groups include a $6 million judgment that bankrupted the Aryan Nations, a $12.5 million jury verdict against the California-based White Aryan Resistance for the death of a black student and a $26 million verdict against the Carolina Klan for burning black churches. Klansmen burned the Center offices in 1983. The arsonists were convicted but not before their leader plotted to kill Mr. Dees. More than thirty men have since been imprisoned for plots to harm him or destroy Center property.  This threat requires a high degree of security during public appearances. To promote acceptance and tolerance, the Center founded Teaching Tolerance in 1990. Over 80,000 schools use the project’s free videos and teaching materials and over 400,000 teachers receive the award winning Teaching Tolerance magazine. The Center has won two Oscars for its tolerance education films and received five Oscar nominations. Mr. Dees believes that it is important to teach tolerance in the classroom as well as fight hate in the courtroom. Mr. Dees has received numerous awards in conjunction with his work.  The U.S. Jaycees chose him as one of the Ten Outstanding Young Men of America for his early business success.  Trial Lawyers for Public Justice named him Trial Lawyer of the Year in 1987. In 2009, he was inducted into the Trial Lawyers’ Hall of Fame by the American Trial Lawyers’ Association. The American Bar Association honored him this year (2012) with the ABA Medal. Mr. Dees is the author of three books, A Lawyer's Journey, his autobiography; Hate on Trial; and Gathering Storm: America’s Militia Threat. He remains actively engaged in litigation. He and his wife live in Montgomery, Alabama. 

More Parenting Videos from Morris Dees, Esq. >
Enter your email to
download & subscribe
to our newsletter