Black storm names

Posted Tuesday, Jul. 09, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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Just wondering if Tropical Storm Chantal meets the requirements of U.S. Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee’s 2003 comment that storm designations should be “inclusive of African-American names,” since columnist Bob Ray Sanders recently addressed names’ perception and origin.

I remember the morning I heard about Lee’s comment. I was teaching in high school at the time and one of my brightest students said he had heard the report. We both laughed at the absurdity and agreed from that day forward I would address him as “Hurricane.”

He happened to be black. And we had a running joke until the day he graduated.

“Hurricane” wished to go to Texas A&M, and ignored the accusations of him being a “schoolboy” or an Oreo or a whitey-wannabe. He refused to be defined.

And therein lies the discrepancy in every scholastic test applied to racial differences.

— Michael Sexton,

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