Color Guard

Judged by dance only: I was a Stingarette in the year 2000-2001 at Texas City High School. I am a young black lady, and I don't agree with everything in this article ["Stung," by Zoe Carmichael, April 24]. I think the Stingarettes are not racist; in order to make the drill team, you have to be a good dancer and have the right dance techniques.

Mrs. Mills was my dance instructor, and there were never any problems of racism on the drill team. Basically you just have to be a good dancer.

Ashly Johnson
Texas City

Help from the outside needed: I have taught here 28 years and, yes, it has been a struggle. I have applied to be an administrator several times after earning my master's and passing the EXCET exam on the first attempt. They have hired individuals who have not even taken the exam!

But no, the jobs always go to individuals who are younger or from somewhere else. My question is this: If I am a teacher who has remained here for so long and my evaluations are exemplary, why have I not been able to gain a position as an administrator?

I once was recommended for my campus, but the superintendent refused to submit my name!

Yes, Texas City ISD is a racist district in many arenas, but so is Texas. What can the African-American citizens do? We have one female on the school board, but little is heard from her.

We need national organizations to aid us.

Name withheld by request
Texas City

Making the grade: I am a former Stingarette, and it's obvious that the main concern of the article is that no black girls make the team. Well, the last year I was on the team, three of the four black girls who made the team dropped out! I bet no one mentioned that.

Why try out if you're just going to quit? Bianca Roberson stated in the article that the Stingarettes is a racist organization, but her three or four best friends were on the team -- not to mention that they were white. How can they be racist if their best friend is black? I am not rich and I am Hispanic, and I made the team. Doing some of the things that the Stingarettes do takes more than just practicing a few hours a day for what -- two weeks? I've been dancing for ten years, and I still cannot do half the stuff that we did. Is our school really that racist? My senior year, four out of five class officers were black, including the person who has been our president all four years. Also, the homecoming queen has been black ever since my sophomore year, four years ago.

I think all this has been blown way out of proportion. Has anyone thought that maybe the girls just weren't good enough?

Elke Stevenson
Texas City

Skip the racist label: As a graduate of Texas City High School, I am shocked to hear claims of racism associated with the friendly town. My experience was quite different. I think it's terrible that one incident, such as a girl not making a drill team, can be used to label a city as racist.

There was much more to the Jayla Weatherspoon case. The Stingarettes had a weight limit that year, and she was over it. It had nothing to do with color.

Katie Bedard

Real news: Wow. I never get tired of commenting to my friends about the excellent reporting of your staff. I use your publication exclusively to find out what's happening in Houston. Thank you for continuing to focus on news stories the "other rag" finds not worthy of its time.

I especially liked this story and the one a few weeks ago concerning sex addicts ["Getting Off," by Craig Malisow, April 3]. I am in classes at Catholic University, and the article was quite helpful in discussions in my moral and medical ethics class.

The Reverend Harry Duffy
Washington, D.C.

Black and white: Does that mean that they don't have any talent? Oh, that's right. You're just another knee-jerk liberal and, of course, the white folk are gonna make sure the black folk don't get ahead.

Suck on it, folks: You're still brainwashed by the ponytailed old hippies from your J school.

Dan Sanders

They're the racists: I am a 2002 graduate of Texas City High School. I am insulted, because by calling an organization that I was once involved in "racist," you are calling me racist, and I'm not. If anyone is racist in this situation, it's the people causing all the commotion. If they think that the Stingarettes are personally out to keep African-American girls off the team, then they need to take a step back and look at who is being racist.

Color has nothing to do with anything. People say that these African-American girls should have made it because they have rhythm, but rhythm doesn't play a big part. Neither do splits and kicks, for that matter. The tryout consists of being able to have clean, sharp movements, good technique and stage presence.

Next Page »
My Voice Nation Help

Of course Ashley Johnson would say that,  She was one of Mrs. Mills chosen ones. 

A Stingarette saw Mrs. Mills officer list on her desk in the order of ranking a week before tryouts ever happened.  Guess what.  The ranking was just as it was on the list. 


Well, let me tell you about the Stingarette Drill Team.  It is a joke.  What once used to be a pride and privilidge to be on now has become the laughing stock of the school.  Not ruled by talent and dignity, it is now ruled by who can kiss the most backside.  If your parent is on the booster club board you are a shoe in Military Officer and oh, watch out for the president because her daughter will be Colonel regardless of her ability.  Don't believe me??? check out the statistics.  If you are a booster club officer, your daughter will surely be a military of social officer.  No rules are followed either in the booster club or the Stingarettes themselves.  It is who you know, social status and teachers favorites.  The girls and parents work so hard to raise money and do not have any say so for how it is used.   The Officer tryouts are extremely questionable to say the least.  Janice Weatherspoon had a valid claim in 1994.  Well people it is 2012 and the only change is the type of descrimination.  Girls who deserve high positions are devistated when much less talented girls get it because of who they are and what office the parent holds.  Check it out.  You see there is a reason girls are not returning.  Only 27 girls on the team this year.  In the past they had to cut off the team at 60-65.  They couldn't even beg enough to try out this year.  Shame on you TCISD.  You really drop the ball on this for way too long.

Houston Concert Tickets