I read with interest the commentary “The myth of black inferiority” (Oct. 24). You may wonder why a 73-year-old white woman would be interested in it. Of particular interest is the quote "one thinks that massive racial inequality is the normal consequence of deficiencies in character and ability in black people."
This quote was on my radar because of a particular experience that I had with students at Loch Raven High School. As a business person, I was asked to participate in a mock interview exercise representing the Hunt Valley Rotary. I was told that the students mostly seniors would be dressed appropriately for a job interview, state their name, shake my hand in greeting me and present me with a folder that contained a resume, a list of suggested questions for me — which I researched the night before — and a form on which I would comment on the interview, which would be shared with the student.
Why am I sharing this experience?
I am a product of private Catholic education — and I have always been interested in the experience of meeting students who are involved with the public school experience. I interviewed six students, four of whom were black. I was blown away by the quality of students that I met.
They were academically superior — 4.0 or 3.5 GPA. They were AP students. They were contributing to the success of their school — captain of the lacrosse team, member of the band, student council and track team. They had afterschool jobs — one student worked at Chick-fil-a, another at Kona Ice (and invited me to visit her this summer) and another drove a truck for Fed-Ex. They all had college interest and acceptances. Some had not a lot of support from home.
I left Loch Raven thankful for the honor of meeting these students. It was an exhilarating experience! I experienced a window of enthusiasm for life and opportunity.
I wondered if I had been lucky with the quality of the students that I was assigned — there were 25 other people doing interviews. I decided that these were the outstanding students who were highly motivated and confident and realized the value of the interview experience.
My corner of the world is still richer because I met those four black students and two white students, and I know the world will be different because of their influence.
And by the way, they all wrote me thank you notes!
Mary Ellen Morrison, Lutherville
Send letters to the editor to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your name and contact information.