NBC11: Controversy Surrounds Lunch Menu at Carondelet High School in Concord

February 6, 2014 12:36 pm · 146 comments

If you have trouble viewing the video, please click HERE to read the story.

{ 146 comments }

1 Clayton Pete February 6, 2014 at 12:42 PM

Holy God above, this is beyond ridiculous.
There is nothing wrong with any of those lunch items. I have had basically that exact same meal (chicken, watermelon, not sure about the cornbread) more than once in my life. It’s all delicious.
Why does the news media try to make up “controversy” when there is none?
Anyone with a problem over the menu clearly has mental issues that should be addressed in private.
Ludicrous.

2 To heck with Black History Month February 6, 2014 at 12:45 PM

That’s a good menu. This PC BS has to stop.

Serve it up people, its good American Food.

3 Anon February 6, 2014 at 12:47 PM

Why is that a controversy? I think America is a little over the top on this and folks need to stop playing the race card.

4 Cowellian February 6, 2014 at 12:49 PM

mmmmmmm!
Fried chicken!

5 Burgerking February 6, 2014 at 12:51 PM

So if we were celebrating white history month and they served hamburgers would everyone flip out? If your culture eats a specific food often, why not serve it?

6 Wendy February 6, 2014 at 12:51 PM

REALLY? Sounds like an excellent lunch to me! Did you know there are starving people all over the U.S. that would love to have this meal and NOT try to turn it into a controversy?!
When will the madness end ….

7 TC February 6, 2014 at 12:51 PM

And the problem is?????

8 DLS Alumni February 6, 2014 at 12:56 PM

While I was a student across the street at DLS, I was amazed at the HUGE difference between the two schools (DLS and CHS). DLS runs like a well-oiled machine. CHS on the other hand, has had more than its share of problems and the general vibe there isn’t very good at all (and was the same when I went to school there).

This was just a very poor decision by the administration of CHS.
However, part of me also wonders why a lunch menu of chicken, cornbread and watermelon are considered so ‘offensive’ to the black community, yet the continued trend of calling each other the n-word is still okay?

Seems like a double standard now doesn’t it?

9 Mr. Pink February 6, 2014 at 12:59 PM

I’m not saying that our oh-so-easily-offended society hasn’t gone overboard with the political correctness, but I believe the problem here is that the food items chosen all tie into racial stereotypes.

The bigger question here is why did the administration even go down this road? Could they not have foreseen the fallout this would cause? I mean, come on, it doesn’t take a genius to realize that serving watermelon in celebration of Black History Month might offend a few people.

10 Dylan February 6, 2014 at 1:02 PM

Hmm, well as a gay man, I have to say I can hardly wait to see what the school does for Gay Pride month in June. :) Maybe they’ll serve a menu of assorted fruits and have one of us in a go-go cage for entertainment? See, I’m okay with the stereotypes. :)

Some people really need to get over all this politically-correct BS already…..

11 JR February 6, 2014 at 1:02 PM

Unbelievable…….

12 aileen February 6, 2014 at 1:06 PM

As a Carondelet alum this sounds like political correctness gone amuck. Also, with respect to the story on NBC11. The story referenced Carondelet as a “Christian” high school. It is a Catholic high school. I take more offense at that

13 ARC February 6, 2014 at 1:06 PM

So…why is it that last week it was okay for all of these white people were posting pictures of their Asian lunches for the Chinese New Year? Should they not offer tacos for Cinco de Mayo?

14 Menu is fine, timing is poor February 6, 2014 at 1:06 PM

No matter what our more conservative readers say, to celebrate Black History Month by serving watermelon and fried chicken was not a good idea. Were that same menu served another time, there wouldn’t be any complaint, but to celebrate BHM, serve something more neutral, something not usually served in the cafeteria. Make it a REAL celebration, for everyone, not something usually associated with the stereotypical southern black people.

15 Always Right February 6, 2014 at 1:09 PM

Cinco De Mayo without tacos and burritos?

St Patricks day without corned beef and cabbage?

Black History month without fried chicken and watermelon?

Anybody offended by these food combinations is pathologically obsessed. A PC mania of sorts.

16 Incognito February 6, 2014 at 1:11 PM

Ridiculous, but then again, our world has become ridiculous.

17 Reality Slap February 6, 2014 at 1:11 PM

Rise above the mire of Political Correctness. If a committee made up of individuals that were African-American had made these choices for the menu, would it have been a problem?

18 Caucasin Month February 6, 2014 at 1:15 PM

Where’s my “Caucasian” month.

Get RID of months, weeks, years, days.

It seems we need a court case to get rid of all this crud.

19 Ridiculous February 6, 2014 at 1:15 PM

Those menu items are served together DAILY at any and every SOUTHERN food restaurant, all over the country as are grits n gravy, collard greens etc. It’s a regional AMERICAN menu combination. This is so getting out of hand and beyond ridiculous. Eat the food and shut up!

20 This is an outrage! February 6, 2014 at 1:16 PM

Where are the collard greens?

21 Jim February 6, 2014 at 1:20 PM

and of course the reporter from NBC news11 had to be black…is that not racist?

22 Me February 6, 2014 at 1:22 PM

Yeah this is over the top. People are way too sensitive. No matter what food they would have chosen someone would still make a stink. My in-laws are black and they make jokes about that menu and how its true, they (and so I don’t hurt anyone’s feelings I mean “they” as in my in-laws) love it! And its probably a treat for the kids…what else would they have had, cold spaghetti or maybe chicken nuggets made from cardboard? Oh wait, now I”m in trouble for stereotyping school lunch menus in general. I better get a lawyer!

23 Reality says... February 6, 2014 at 1:23 PM

lol…white peoples problems.

24 Terri February 6, 2014 at 1:23 PM

Hmmm and why did NBC have to use a black reporter to tell this story? That is racist! RISE ABOVE PEOPLE. Rise above. PC is the downfall of America

25 Should be serving February 6, 2014 at 1:24 PM

Rice and Beans. A more nutritious meal and a staple of southern peoples. Safe the fried chicken, corn bread and watermelon for a party with dancing, blue grass and a barrel of white lightening.

26 Dorothy February 6, 2014 at 1:24 PM

Fried chicken is not healthy for children, too much fat. PC chicken should be baked or grilled. At least the watermelon is healthy. Really, the things we feed our kids in school – fried chicken indeed!

27 anon February 6, 2014 at 1:25 PM

If it was White History Month (imagine that) with hamburgers, corn on the cob and apple pie being served, would anyone object? Would the media jump all over it? Unbelievable!

28 warbirds45 February 6, 2014 at 1:26 PM

I believe the Vatican was serving the same meal. Paula Deen was in charge of the event!

29 I'm thirsty. February 6, 2014 at 1:26 PM

Who’s got some grape Kool-Aid?

30 Bruce February 6, 2014 at 1:26 PM

Fried Chicken, Corn Bread, and watermelon? There is nothing wrong with that. Heck it’s a far better menu than what I had for lunch in high school. Which was nothing. I think it is also a trivial issue, but after reading these posts, I think the problem is not people over reacting and making such issues controversial, but rather how insensitive people are to others.

There seems to be a general lack of thoughtfulness. People don’t want to think, they just do regardless of who might feel offended. This isn’t due to people consciously wanting to hurt the feelings of other people, but rather due to laziness and lack of forethought. Every works, everyone is tired and stressed out, but this is NOT an excuse to NOT think before doing.

Thessalonians 3:13
As for you, brothers, do not grow weary in doing good.

31 VikingPrincess February 6, 2014 at 1:30 PM

What? Did I miss the part where they mention how the decision was made? Students? Faculty? If AA students involved – then why an offense?

@Burgerking- because it is an apparent, offensive, non PC thing for Caucasians to celebrate their race. Don’t you know? Geeze.

Something seems fundamentally wrong with my later statement. Hmmm

32 I don't get it February 6, 2014 at 1:32 PM

So if it was a Cinco De Mayo celebration and they served tacos and beans or if they had fortune cookies and fried rice for a Chinese New Year lunch would the news media be alerted and the principal have to apologize for that as well? Since when does fried chicken and cornbread equate to the “degradation” of African Americans as the professor in the report stated. Guess you better let KFC and Popeye’s know that their food promotes negative stereotypes and we should all be picketing outside of their restaurants for being propagators of racism and aiding in the degradation of an entire culture. Ridiculous!!!

33 Spark Baldman February 6, 2014 at 1:34 PM

Is Fuzzy Zoeller the Principal there now?

34 iluvfriedchicken February 6, 2014 at 1:35 PM

I think just fried chicken and corn bread would be OK because those are traditional southern foods. But adding watermelon was going too far. That’s racist.

35 glenn February 6, 2014 at 1:37 PM

well BO WHO WHO! i hope some one does get their little feelings hurt.
i seen no controversy when school served egg roles on Chinese New Year. no one got their feelings hurt

36 Yolanda February 6, 2014 at 1:38 PM

Is watermelon available already? I thought that was a summer fruit.

37 Jim February 6, 2014 at 1:38 PM

Why are there no month’s for white folks accomplishments?…John Glenn, Einstein, Lincoln, Pastuer, Madam Curry etc….we get a few holidays and are crucified for even suggesting such a thing…and what about diversity…what can’t it just be History/diversity month…you don’t want to be singled out as it’s racist…yet you want to be singled out for your own month…funny when it’s convenient let’s pull out the race card but when it’s too your benefit it’s considered a celebration?…interesting

38 Mr. Pink February 6, 2014 at 1:43 PM

@Spark Baldman LOL

39 Concerned February 6, 2014 at 1:44 PM

No offense Mr. Mayor but it’s social media and the news that has made this story spin out of control across the US. This was a teachable moment and has now gone insanely viral and can now put our children in jeopardy from some crazy radical person who has taken offense to this.
Absolutely ridiculous

40 Bruce February 6, 2014 at 1:45 PM

Most of our fruits in the off season are imported from Mexico and S. America.

41 Smokey February 6, 2014 at 1:47 PM

I associate BBQ as a black ethnic food more than I associate chicken.

42 VikingPrincess February 6, 2014 at 1:48 PM

LOL… just realized something…

Been craving hood fried chicken for months and dining for this…you know that famous fried chicken and cornbread or pancake/waffle breakfast restaurant in contra Costa county? The name escapes me..
Anyways, I have cornbread on the frig and my hubby brought me home a watermelon a few days ago. Ha!

Seriously

OK – they got the idea from me. I lived in the South but not from it and I am Scandinavian.

Need greens, grits, corn on the cob, fried gizzards, hot sauce, mashed potatoes and red velvet cupcakes -

43 38hunna February 6, 2014 at 1:49 PM

They don’t eat as it is – why are they carring so much??

44 CTK February 6, 2014 at 1:49 PM

Hi J****!!! (in the video with bicycle) Haven’t seen you in years. Keep up the great work at Carondelet. 33 years? WOW!! You must be doing something right! :)

45 Frank-N-Furter February 6, 2014 at 1:54 PM

#10 Dylan,

Hot Dogs?
LOL

46 Sharyn February 6, 2014 at 1:55 PM

I’m white and I grew up on that same menu every Sunday!!! It’s southern food not just Black food. Everything we all (every race) do and say anymore is a slap in someone’s face…When is all this going to stop?

47 James C. Korn February 6, 2014 at 1:58 PM

The idea was good and granted most of this is over the top PC BS, but watermelon was a mistake. There’s a LONG history of racism associated with watermelon and it really isn’t part of a typical soul food menu. There are plenty of other delicious options, of which corn bread and fried chicken are perfectly valid and not remotely racist, but watermelon was where they failed to do their homework and blew it for everyone. Too bad. For those students that are bummed to be missing out, I highly encourage your parents to take you to Pican in Oakland. Super nice, super good Southern cooking. Mmmm hmm. http://www.picanrestaurant.com/

48 Bishop Estates February 6, 2014 at 2:00 PM

@ #10 Dylan, Thanks for the giggle. But through the comedy you make a good point. We all need to get over ourselves and stop worrying constantly about offending each other, live life people!

But I would like to know who blew the whistle….cause that person is wound a little to tight…..just sayin’

49 mmhhh February 6, 2014 at 2:01 PM

can anyone please explain to me what exactly is wrong/bad about this menu.
Please? What is the outrage about? I don’t get it?
I am not trying to sound funny – I honestly do not understand.

50 Amy February 6, 2014 at 2:06 PM

Gimme a break! I bet they have corned beef and cabbage on St. Patrick’s day and nobody calls NBC.

51 Rosie February 6, 2014 at 2:06 PM

While many of you are correct that fried chicken is a southern staple, the depiction and stereotype of black people eating chicken is indeed, quite racist. It stems from the film Birth of a Nation which put into film many of the racist stereotypes still confronting our nation today. The films shows blacks elected to office on the floor of Congress with their shoes off, eating fried chicken and acting like ruffians or children gone wild, clearly indicating they cannot handle responsibility or power. The fried chicken and watermelon stereotype is a way of showing contempt for African Americans. It is not about being “politically correct” but about understanding the deep layers of history to stereotypes and how they hurt all of us.

52 Carondeletalum February 6, 2014 at 2:06 PM

Who ever called the media to make this into a huge deal is out of their mind. The school addressed the concerns of students and their parents. The end result of all this, everyone agrees to keep the menu the same but remove the watermelon. Damn watermelon!

53 stacyt49 February 6, 2014 at 2:09 PM

well at least CHS didn’t do what my alma mater, UCIrvine, did one Black History Month. The main cafeterias in the dorms served up chicken & waffles. Score 1 for Orange County ! *not!* the whole dozen or so black students at UCI were VERY offended at the selection.

i would have LOVED to be in on that planning meeting – its Black History Month, what kind of food should we serve to celebrate … chicken and waffles- sounds GREAT !!!

54 Hey Princess!!!! February 6, 2014 at 2:11 PM

You are married?

Darn, my whole life just got shattered.

Bummer.
:(

55 Horse n around February 6, 2014 at 2:11 PM

I want to hear from the parents and students who were offended.

56 GD98 February 6, 2014 at 2:35 PM

A 99% white school deciding what menu to put together in honor of black history month is making for some great comedy.

Can’t wait till Taco Bell caters Cinco de Mayo.

57 Joe Martinez February 6, 2014 at 2:40 PM

I can’t believe the hypocrisy on this thread. Everyone is railing against overly sensitive “PC BS”. Take a look in the mirror. Why are you so sensitive about the “PC BS”? If I don’t understand your sensitivity, should I just dismiss it the way you dismiss the point of view of those offended by the lunch menu? Your unwillingness to dialogue on something that is different from your own experience is why many people of color raise their eyebrows at this not-so-subtle form of entitlement and bigotry. If you don’t like all the political correctness, just get over it. You’re to dang sensitive.

58 JDA February 6, 2014 at 2:43 PM

The menu trivializes the reason WHY we have a Black History Month.

BHM celebrates a people’s struggle for freedom in a land that promised equality for all. Lest we forget that some were held as property, and those who were ‘free’ were not granted full citizenship–confirmed at that time by the Court’s interpretation of our beloved Constitution.

Lynchings, segregation, intimidation and assassinations are all apart of this history. The sad irony being that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was only passed when the murders of northern white students by the Klan in Mississippi finally outraged enough members of Congress.

I pray for the day we do not need to commemorate BHM. But the actions of those at Carondelet and most of the posters on this board lead me to believe that day will not arrive anytime soon.

59 Seriously February 6, 2014 at 2:49 PM

How the blatant and disgusting racism behind this move evaded all of you halfwits is completely beyond me. I can only be happy that I moved away from Concord two years ago; the vast majority are clearly a bunch ignorant fools.

60 RIII February 6, 2014 at 2:54 PM

Perhaps Spaghetti and Meatballs with French bread and Zucchini would not have offended anyone. What will be on the menu on St. Patricks’ Day? I know Steak tartar with egg rolls and a little raw fish and wasabi . This has to be the result of a “No News Day!”

61 Dick Gregory February 6, 2014 at 2:55 PM

Last time I was down South I walked into this restaurant and this white waitress came up to me and said, “We don’t serve colored people here.” I said, “That’s all right. I don’t eat colored people. Bring me a whole fried chicken.”

Then these three white boys came up to me and said, “Boy, we’re givin’ you fair warnin’. Anything you do to that chicken, we’re gonna do to you.” So I put down my knife and fork, I picked up that chicken and I kissed it. Then I said, “Line up, boys!”

62 Nathan February 6, 2014 at 2:57 PM

I take it not a single person who posted here is African American. A total and incomplete willingness to empathize is indicative of your latent racism as reflective by. passive aggressive references to “white history month” (among others) is exposed with every additional comment. Isn’t the fact that an apology was issued from the school evidence enough that this was problematic. How tone deaf are you people? Yet again, claycord comments reflect a truly uneducated cross section of the bay area.

63 Mitt February 6, 2014 at 2:59 PM

Rosie – you explained that very well. I think the more inappropriate images and films that were created by white people for other white people are beginning to die off. 15 and 16 year olds and apparently a ton of these posters, haven’t seen how cruel and ugly associations with fried chicken and watermelon used to be. This is a very good learning situation for the students. The students actually do have corn beef and cabbage on st pats, but it’s not the same at all.
My daughter said when they announced the menu over the speaker, lots of them kind of looked at each other and thought – wow. Oops.
Then the school had an assembly Wednesday to discuss the issue. The principal got up and explained what happened, but she obviously didn’t want to point fingers or call anyone out. It’s not for sure, but the it seems that students, including black student union members, picked the menu thinking it was soul food, and it got into the announcements before any sponsor or teacher approved the idea. The kitchen staff just went with the flow, perhaps not understanding the historical connotations because their culture didn’t include these stereotypes.

But then… Somebody called the news. Notice they leave out any real facts about how this happened. Some of you ask “who’s offended?” Well the media just wants to be sure they find some people who they can pass this on to and offend. I just hope, as mentioned above, that somebody doesn’t overreact.

64 Almondgirl February 6, 2014 at 3:01 PM

This is not just a local news story. This has gone national with coverage by the AP, Fox news, MSNBC, MSN, Yahoo, Detroit Times, just to name a few.

65 Black Mandingo February 6, 2014 at 3:05 PM

I for one am happy that this fine food will be supplied. It makes me happy when the white overlords, who we must dutifully serve, validate our lifestyle by sampling our fine food.

I hope that the next activity involves cotton and a whole lot of pickin.

66 chalkboy8 February 6, 2014 at 3:16 PM

I wish people would say WHY they are offended instead of just playing the race card.

67 Joe February 6, 2014 at 3:18 PM

Another reason I don’t watch NBC. What does this have to do with news? OMG its food people are eating at a school. If the school wasn’t giving out food, then go and report it…

68 KAD February 6, 2014 at 3:21 PM

That is southern menu plain and simple. Nothing at all wrong with it. I will eat that any day of the week. Now I am going to make some cornbread.

69 Can't We All Get Along February 6, 2014 at 3:23 PM

I’m tempted to “dance around it” like Cowellian. As a white woman……until you’ve walked a mile in someones shoes.

I see “both sides of the fence.” Sometimes you have to thicken your skin and not be so sensitive.

On the other hand, watermelon DOES feed into racial stereotypes. If I was preparing this menu (and I wasn’t), I would be okay with the chicken and corn bread. Leave the watermelon out.

Someone should have known that someone would be offended. Carondelet used poor judgment.

70 Grumpy Old Man February 6, 2014 at 3:25 PM

Today is Ronald Reagan’s birthday…did these PC morons have jelly beans on the menu? …I didn’t think so.

71 mia February 6, 2014 at 3:26 PM

Get over yourselves people. Politically correct has gone mental. You eat Irish stiff on St. Paddys day. I don’t care if you’re black, white or pink with yellow spots, fried chicken is eaten every day, everywhere. RIDICULOUS

72 Hillary February 6, 2014 at 3:27 PM

What difference does it make?

73 CHS Alumni February 6, 2014 at 3:28 PM

I had a wonderful experience at Carondelet. Absolutely wonderful. DLS Alumni- of course the vibe at Carondelet didn’t make sense to you. I’m guessing you are a boy.

74 Richardsfamily February 6, 2014 at 3:31 PM

Since when is Fried Chicken, watermelon and cornbread a black only meal? Do they serve this meal throughout the year or just this month?

75 Mrs. T February 6, 2014 at 3:34 PM

I do not see a problem with this. Any black person will tell you they love fried chicken and corn bread and watermelon. So what is the problem??
I have black friends that will laugh at the stupidity of these people who claim this is racist.
Personally I think ribs and some greens should have been added to the menu also.

76 J. February 6, 2014 at 3:34 PM

At least the girls weren’t told to wear comfortable shoes.

77 @aileen February 6, 2014 at 3:35 PM

Wow being called a Christian school over Catholic offends you?

You don’t belong in a Catholic School. Catholics are Christians, wake up! Maybe we should be concerned about parents feeling elite/special because they go there. My daughter was Lutheran and attended/graduated a CHS. She is very grounded and at least knows Catholics, Lutherans, Baptists and more are Christians..It is a Christian School. Christian is broader term for all who believe. Amazing ignorance displayed.. How did you get your kid pass the interview.. If you had made that comment then, NO way in hell they would allow you and your kid at CHS.

78 Sacto Rob February 6, 2014 at 3:48 PM

Does anyone here, ANYONE, recognize the irony of White people presuming to tell Black people when it is and isn’t okay for them to be offended? And you wonder why Blacks still consider themselves to be living in a racist country?
If you’re upset about something that someone else says about you, does it make you feel any better when that person get all patronizing and tries to counter your feelings by telling you you really have no call to be upset?
Get a clue, folks.

79 itsme February 6, 2014 at 3:49 PM

So Black History “MONTH” will last for a month. What are they planning to serve the rest of the time? AND do they serve this at any other time of the year…..is it part of the regular menu?

80 inmotion February 6, 2014 at 3:52 PM

Fried chicken, corn bread, watermelon, etc. foods that we as a society have used in the past to make fun and demean black people, so lets serve that up to honor them on Black History Month.

81 VikingPrincess February 6, 2014 at 3:54 PM

#56

…not yet, that is

Keeps online wolves at bay ;)

82 mika February 6, 2014 at 3:56 PM

I am white and I eat watermelon and fried chicken year-round. Is this wrong?

And just what is an appropriate menu to celebrate black history month?

Fried chicken and watermelon are enjoyed by all colors. All cultures. A lot of food served at “soul food” kitchens is southern, not owned by black people. My white family ate all the southern foods, cornbread, greens, cobblers, and WATERMELON.

83 Terri February 6, 2014 at 3:56 PM

O M G. STOOOOOPPPPPP ALREADY! Why do you egg this on Mr. Mayor?? Cut the comments off already. The school freakin’ apologized….BUILD A BRIDGE AND MOVE THE EFF OVER IT! The media is making more to this story than it actually was. The students/teachers screwed up and fixed the problem. If the parents at this school who reported this were so extremely offended, pull your daughter out and go be happy somewhere else for effs-sake. This is absolutely mind-boggling.

84 See Jane February 6, 2014 at 4:00 PM

A school lunch has to be approved by somebody. I an pretty sure the girls aren’t cooking. How does an idea like this make it all the way to the announcements before someone realizes that this is a very bad idea? Good job to CHS for apologizing in a situation where they were clearly in the wrong.

85 mutts February 6, 2014 at 4:05 PM

Serve spaghetti!

86 Just Me February 6, 2014 at 4:08 PM

I was baffled by the amount of coverage this story was getting today. It seemed like people being way oversensitive. It sounded like a fine soul food meal to me, which seemed appropriate as part of a Black History Month celebration. But apparently, “watermelon” is a thing: There is a long history of racism associated with watermelon and African Americans. (It’s even got its own Wikipedia entry.) Now that I know, I’m thinking, is it not strange that big to-dos such as this actually perpetuate racial stereotypes? I didn’t know about the connection, and it appears many commenters here didn’t either. But now we do, and now we can’t just think of watermelon as a tasty fruit. It has to be tied up in racial sensitivity. If this wasn’t a big deal, these silly associations would fade away over time, and we’d be doing less tip-toeing, ya know?

87 Anonmom February 6, 2014 at 4:10 PM

GET OVER IT! It was an honest oversight, adequately apologized for. Too many people out there with too much time on their hands. Use that energy to fight hunger and do something positive.with your time. ENOUGH ALREADY.

88 See Jane February 6, 2014 at 4:14 PM

The positive spin on this embarrassing situation for Carondelet is that it will open a dialogue between students and their parents their teachers about why this menu was a problem.

89 Me February 6, 2014 at 4:14 PM

The end result of all of this: I’m really. really hungry.

90 Big mama February 6, 2014 at 4:17 PM

Why are african american getting so sensitive over what they are known to eat?
Should they have served wontons and burritos????So lame!

91 @ Always Right February 6, 2014 at 4:17 PM

Good point. I hadn’t thought of it like that.

92 Shelly February 6, 2014 at 4:19 PM

The watermelon. Extremely poor taste, or maybe innocent ignorance?

93 Grumpy Old Man February 6, 2014 at 4:21 PM

Terri@#86: Well said!

94 Sting February 6, 2014 at 4:28 PM

This is very stupid and oversensitive. I love southern style cooking- grits, watermelon, greens, BBQ..etc. I can understand watermelon to an extent, as my dad attended Ole Miss aka “Watermelon U”. That was a while ago and times have changed. As a kid, I would go nuts when the older AA men would go door to door selling big fresh watermelons right off the truck. No racial connotations crossed my mind, just the prospect of an enjoyable treat. I think this is an insult for people with too much time on their hands, get over it.

P.s.- I am now starving….

95 Hey Princess!! February 6, 2014 at 4:29 PM

Whew, then there is still a chance. Thank you Odin, Thor and Fraye.

96 Mark February 6, 2014 at 4:37 PM

Slow news day for NBC. Just trying to stir the pot for improved ratings. Really has nothing to do with any menu.

97 Jess February 6, 2014 at 4:55 PM

I think it was the watermelon that was most offensive. Watermelon has a long history of being associated with racism in America. Popular post-Civil War postcards known as “coon cards” featured black children eating watermelon. Racist baseball fans threw watermelon rinds at Jackie Robinson. Since Obama became president, It’s been easy to find online racist images of the White House and watermelons or Barack Obama and watermelons. Here’s an article that talks about the use of watermelon in racist imagery in America.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/theodore-johnson/watermelon-african-americans_b_3069600.html

98 Watermelon February 6, 2014 at 5:08 PM

I AM JUST A FRUIT enjoyed by people of all nationalities and colors. Why all the racist comments?

99 Anon2you February 6, 2014 at 5:08 PM

Black History Month is racist, and needs to be cancelled. It is nothing more than a way to continue to separate the white and black communities by isolating black achievements and important figures of color through out history. It is just another form a segregation. It is also a way for white & black politicians to feel like they are somehow making the world a better place by celebrating black achievements as they are somehow different that other human achievements, why? Because someone of color did it? Doesn’t that just seem wrong…Time to blend history together and celebrate human achievement for just that reason alone, no because of the skin color of the person who made the achievement. Judge them by the content of their character and not the color of their skin…
I love fried chicken, watermelon & corn bread, if that makes me a racist…Then so be it…I think anyone who was offended by this menu, is in FACT the true racist…

100 Watermelon February 6, 2014 at 5:12 PM

Only those who are racist make my existence at any function an issue.

101 Woody Guthrie February 6, 2014 at 5:14 PM

Thank you Dick Gregory.
Encore!

102 hahayourefunny February 6, 2014 at 5:29 PM

it really is funny to see so many white people up in arms about people of color getting offended. Sacto Rob had it right, as did Nathan. The hysterical response to claims of racism exemplifies an inability to dialogue about something that people are experiencing ALL the time.

Look, I know talking about race is uncomfortable for a lot of people, and people have this aversion to wanting to be “guilt tripped”…. acknowledging racism exists doesn’t mean all white people are bad. I’m a white genderqueer person, and I’ve seen the way racism operates, and I personally think it’s my responsibility to not perpetuate stereotypes that hurt people (even when I dont understand why certain things might be offensive at first)

This backlash-oriented rhetoric of beign “overly sensitive” or “maniacally PC” seems to be one way to stifle discussion about the *very real issue* of white supremacy/racism in our country. (Note: Just because things are better than they were in the past, doesn’t mean we have reached post-racism in the United States).

Is it really that hard to try to understand where someone with a different social location is coming from? One good starting place is relinquishing control over how and when these issues are discussed, and not assuming you know better than someone who is living that reality (people of color on race, women on issues of sexism, etc). Instead of getting all worked up, try listening and empathizing first. You may still disagree, but perhaps everyone can learn something.

Also, on the note of “white history month”… that’s every month. Anyone who can think critically about the curriculum students are fed know that the majority of information is about white men and their contributions to history with a few marginal examples of women or black people peppered in for “PC” sake – not taking the inherent value of contributions made by women, indigenous and other people of color, and the differently-abled, seriously.

103 Clayanon February 6, 2014 at 5:31 PM

Eating watermelon is very popular with people of all races. Here is a delicious recipe I make all the time for Watermelon Margaritas (not for those under 21 of course).

Watermelon Margaritas
Because of the sweetness of the watermelon this margarita doesn’t need much sugar, so one glass has only 105 calories. A little bit of fresh lime juice brightens the drink and adds a welcome tanginess. For a special touch, rim your glasses with sugar and garnish with lime wedges and watermelon balls.

Cooking Light JULY 2010

Yield: 6 servings
Ingredients
2 teaspoons sugar
1 lime wedge
3 1/2 cups cubed seeded watermelon
1/2 cup tequila
2 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon Triple Sec (orange-flavored liqueur)
Lime wedges or watermelon balls (optional)
Preparation
1. Place 2 teaspoons sugar in a saucer. Rub the rims of 6 glasses with 1 lime wedge; spin rim of each glass in sugar to coat. Set prepared glasses aside.

2. Combine watermelon and next 4 ingredients (through Triple Sec) in a blender; process until smooth. Fill each prepared glass with 1/2 cup crushed ice. Add 1/2 cup margarita to each glass. Garnish with lime wedges or melon balls, if desired.

Nutritional Information
Amount per serving
Calories: 105 Fat: 0.2g Saturated fat: 0.0g Monounsaturated fat: 0.0g Polyunsaturated fat: 0.1g Protein: 0.6g Carbohydrate: 14.1g Fiber: 0.4g Cholesterol: 0.0mg Iron: 0.2mg Sodium: 1mg Calcium: 7mg

104 Jerk February 6, 2014 at 5:34 PM

Sick of this Manufactured BS. You got your Feelings Hurt? Go Find a BRIDGE AND JUMP!!!!!!
.
Asian History Month, Black History Month, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.YOU ARE THE RACISTS.

105 Jim February 6, 2014 at 5:55 PM

@Amalgamated, I have read several of the comments…it appears that not only I but several folks agree…creating your own special time “apart” from the rest just creates separatism…you ask for it and when it’s convenient it’s then racism….stop the hate by celebrating all living beings…black, white, red, yellow, green, purple, gay, straight, bi, gender neutral…see it took 2 lines just to spell out all the differences…accept what is common between us all and celebrate together how we are different

106 kj#2 February 6, 2014 at 6:11 PM

im hungry! where’s the chicken! Watermelon margarita too! not like they were gonna serve it to only one race! People don’t have jobs, bad economy were in a drought! get over it!

107 Silva February 6, 2014 at 6:35 PM

Clayanon (#107) Thanks, we all needed that !! :-D

108 Shelly February 6, 2014 at 6:48 PM

@Jess (101). That’s a good link! Thanks!

109 Broke in Colony Park February 6, 2014 at 7:15 PM

Poor use of airtime. I see no issue here…when does political correctness go too far? Well here is one instance.

110 Antler February 6, 2014 at 7:17 PM

Anon2You at #103 ~ ~ ~ I agree with every word you wrote!

I was born and raised in the South, and I can’t think of anyone of my family and friends who does not LOVE fried chicken and corn bread. The only thing I dislike about the menu is the watermelon…..I just don’t care for watermelon, that much is true…..but the REAL reason is that the correct traditional menu would be fried chicken, cole slaw, corn bread and butter, sliced tomatoes, and warm banana pudding for dessert. Y’all come!!!

111 JustSaying... February 6, 2014 at 7:29 PM

Cinco de Mayo without Tacos, St Patty’s Day or Chinese New Year without their ethnic specialties… Those are ETHNIC FOODS. Don’t you get that Fried Chicken, Corn bread & Watermelon are not foods that represent the African American Community. My office had an international day recently & everyone brought in a dish to celebrate & share with each other a dish from their heritage. That is totally different. You don’t see it as a big deal but it is. The word is IGNORANCE. I am really sad that you don’t see that. I try really hard to teach my kids to be sensitive to other peoples feelings. This lacked consideration that there are negative connotations to those foods & the African American community. You don’t live in the days of Archie Bunker any more. Show some common decency.

112 Eldrige X February 6, 2014 at 7:30 PM

That is the same menu I served for MLK Day, minus the 40 Oz.’s of King Cobra.

113 Always Right February 6, 2014 at 7:39 PM

The watermelon is a much maligned fruit.

It not only has racial overtones, it serves as a pointed political rejoinder.

Green on the outside and red on the inside.

114 Today February 6, 2014 at 7:44 PM

Is my birthday, as it is be Bob Marley’s also,
Guess what’s on my menu, pass the dutchy bra!

115 annomamma February 6, 2014 at 8:54 PM

Enough already! Sick of this double standard crap

116 Dr. Jellyfinger February 6, 2014 at 9:42 PM

You all forgot about pork ribs.

Anyway…..the whole controversy begs the question………. is there any food, or recipes that black folks would like to claim as unique to their race, ethnicity, point of origin…? I mean like macaroni & cheese with grape soda? or????

Why is it racist anyway?
ALL Americans are world renown for burger, fries & a coke
Mexicans are all tacos, beans & rice
Italians are all sausage, pasta & zuchinni
Chinese are all chow mein, rice & fortune cookies
Germans are all schitzel, sauerkraut & beer
French are all snails,baguettes & 2nd place wine….
Don’t even get me started on Jewish foods……..(gag!)

The list is endless. Is it all racist?

I might add that every November comes a day when almost ALL the Americans are all eating turkey!

If anyone is offended, who cares? Let’s eat.

117 SHANAYNAY February 6, 2014 at 10:20 PM

When will people realize that the ones who cry racism, whine and b*tch are the biggest racists of all. N oone else thinks twice, they just think Everyone is created equal.

118 Duck February 6, 2014 at 10:46 PM

#107 Try this out !
I make the same drinks , but I substitute the tequila with 40oz of Old English 800 or Schlitz Malt Liquor or a bottle of Mad Dawg 20/20

119 Really? February 6, 2014 at 10:50 PM

Having relatives who black, they say it all the time… Staple food: fried chicken, collards, cornbread, just the way it is. Our family wasn’t offended, we kinda laughed. We can give them a longer list of soul food if needed… I’m asian, and I was taught black history through my family. We get it. No big deal… We don’t think it’s racist, we only mock the people who make it a race thing…

120 VikingPrincess February 6, 2014 at 10:54 PM

No thanks Dr J –
I’m full

121 Jess February 6, 2014 at 11:14 PM

If you don’t understand why some might find it offensive to have watermelon on the menu, take a look at these images.

http://thesocietypages.org/socimages/2012/12/26/slavery-and-the-watermelon/

122 Dr. Jellyfinger February 6, 2014 at 11:25 PM

Jess, that’s hysterical! LOL!

123 MDUSD Graduate February 7, 2014 at 1:12 AM

We had Multi-cultural weeks at ,my school and the different student groups would serve ethnic foods. Did that make all of them racist? If black students sell bbq ribs, fried chicken (yes, fried chicken,) and sweet potato pie , does that make them racist? Chinese students sold noodles, Indian students sold curry dishes,. Personally, I liked the pizza served by the German club…go figure. It all depends on who wants to be offended at any given time.

124 what!? February 7, 2014 at 2:03 AM

they forgot chitlins and catfish? now THATS racist!

125 CHS/DLS Dad February 7, 2014 at 6:36 AM

I have kids at both DLS and CHS. What should be more clear in this discussion is that fact that the idea for this menu was proposed by
the (BSU) BLACK STUDENT UNION. This was not some prank by insensitive rich white kids.

Every morning, announcements are read over the intercom by a student. Usually, an adult from administration reviews the announcements before they are read. This time, the admin adult either read it too quickly, which one tends to do when you read similar announcements over and over again each day, or they did not proof-read it at all.

I will add this observation: My kids are very close friends with students of many different racial backgrounds. They are not just school-day friends, but the type of friends that have sleep-overs. I have noticed that they all tend to tease each other, often using racial stereotypes that middle-aged folk like myself would never ever use. The reality is they love each other and find that laughter really is the international language. My son will be called cracker, while his very best friend is of middle-eastern decent and will joke that he better look out or he will strap a bomb to himself. Another friend from the Philippines will ask if we will be serving dog for dinner. Much of this may sound terrible to a 50 year old like myself, but again these kids love each other and embrace their differences.

I have always taught my kids that God’s greatest gift is the ability to laugh at yourself. This gift is not just available to wealthy white kids. It looks like the members of the BSU figured that out.

126 cornfed February 7, 2014 at 6:39 AM

To Nathan and the rest of the condescending intellectualists. You can take your superior understanding of the human condition and shove it up your backside. The only reason that these food items are offensive is the same reason that the words negro and black are now offensive–because the racism pimps WANT them to be.

I was raised on the very same food.

127 mike February 7, 2014 at 7:11 AM

Confirms that those two schools are full of a bunch of racist snobs. . . .

128 Oxymoron February 7, 2014 at 8:03 AM

Meh. Maybe the school will score a reality show from it all. You know what they say about Catholic girls, right?

129 Token Black Guy February 7, 2014 at 8:16 AM

Wow……….all these white, asian and hispanic people running around knowing how I should feel. Somehow that’s more offensive than watermelon on the menu………but what do I know. Maybe some of you racial relation experts should tell me. Apparently I’m not a “good” black if I don’t get my panties in a wad over this.

45 year old black male, originally from Florida……..can any of you race baiting, pandering idiots figure out where me and my family stand on this issue?

I have no problem with it. I love fried chicken, I love watermelon and I love corn bread. I hate collard greens. And no, I don’t drink grape soda, but toss out the collard green, throw in some mac and cheese and a sweet tea and I’m back in my Nana’s kitchen. For the record, I also love Thai food and Japanese food.

Anyone who is offended by this menu needs to step away from their keyboards and go live life a little. If any african-americans have an issue with this menu, then ask yourself what the hell you expected when you asked for Black History Month? Foo-foo? Some of you people kill me.

Peace.

130 Cowellian February 7, 2014 at 8:33 AM

Some people just enjoy being perpetually offended.

131 Laura Zah February 7, 2014 at 8:52 AM

Cowellian, You’re only saying that because I’m HISPANIC! <):{D

132 Pyrrhus February 7, 2014 at 8:54 AM

Well, by the comments on here, I can see why the school made such a decision. Since most of you seem ignorant. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Watermelon_stereotype

If you don’t think serving black people watermelon during black history month isn’t a good idea then you deserve all the back lash from the rest of the bay area.

133 BCuzItzClaycord February 7, 2014 at 9:04 AM

#135 – you hit the nail on the head……..But then again there will those who jump you for it, but you are correct.

134 Antler February 7, 2014 at 9:18 AM

Token Black Guy at #135…. Thank you, that gets it said better than anyone else did.

Besides, I really goofed when I forgot the sweet tea in my menu. Do we need fried okra? Please, may we have some fried okra? The oil’s already hot from the chicken…… pleeeeeeeeeeeze???

135 PEGASUS February 7, 2014 at 10:28 AM

I sure wish we could settle this crucial issue, I’m losing sleep.

136 PeopleInCCCAreStupid February 7, 2014 at 11:05 AM

No one cares that you’re white, black, orange, red or green and you just “looooveeee” fried chicken, watermelon and cornbread. STFU already with that BS response. The point is, none of those foods have ANYTHING to do with African American culture or ethnicity. God, you people are nitwits. The ONLY connection between those foods, especially watermelon, and African American culture, are negative. Wake up, you fools! We all know that when people joke about black people eating watermelon and running for fried chicken they are being racist pigs.

137 IDontUnderstand February 7, 2014 at 11:53 AM

Weird. What is the big deal with the menu. Why is everyone so uptight these days trying to make every little thing into something offensive. How stupid can we be.

138 Ann February 7, 2014 at 12:24 PM

This situation echoes what I feel as a parent of a daughter currently at Carondelet as well as a Carondelet grad. Nancy Libby and many of the administration staff don’t handle situations properly. Instead, they throw anyone under the bus to help themselves out of any situation. This should have been nipped in the bud by the school principal. Instead, Nancy Libby declines to be interviewed and has a nun do the talking for her on TV, reading a statement. I have found the administration at CHS to be both out of touch and extremely condescending in their handling any concerns brought to their attention. Both of my daughter’s classroom experience(s) were/are mostly positive, (there are a couple of rotten apples there, but that’s life). The administration at CHS is petty, dictatorial and very often punitive. Laughable! There in no true leadership at CHS. Nancy Libby was supposed to be the interim principal. Why is she still there?

139 Shelly February 7, 2014 at 1:12 PM

@Pyrrhus (138); Thank you for posting another good link. While I don’t pretend that I know how black folks feel, I feel very uncomfortable about the watermelon. I’m old enough to remember many terrible images of the past and that stereotype struck a nerve with me. If I still ate cereal grains and starchy veggies and suger though, I could really go for some fried chicken and all the fixins’, including the additional aforementioned yummies.

140 Shelly February 7, 2014 at 1:25 PM

@Jess (127); Oh yes, that’s a great illustrative link, as well. A picture truly is worth a thousand words!

141 Richardsfamily February 7, 2014 at 1:35 PM

I read on several news blogs that the Black Student Union put together this menu selection? If that is the case, what is just a slow news day?

142 Carlos February 7, 2014 at 2:22 PM

Reading all these comments makes me sad for white people who are completely unwilling to accept an error, apologize and move on. Just more proof that white privilege is alive and well.

143 Just saying February 7, 2014 at 5:24 PM

I love all those foods, I’m not offended!

144 TT February 7, 2014 at 8:24 PM

No matter what you do you can’t please everyone so it doesn’t matter anymore.

145 Mammy's Little Baby February 7, 2014 at 9:49 PM

What? No short’nin’ bread?

146 Realist February 8, 2014 at 2:36 AM

Ahh, more of these “California Crybaby” non-issue isses.

Well, for my part of the PC grabbag, I’m goingto sue Italy for the Romans abusing my Irish ancestors a few years ago. You see, my people still feel held down by the vir.

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