Black Employees File Racial Discrimination Suit Against Black Superintendent

TUKWILA, Wash. (CBS Seattle/AP) — Nine employees of the Tukwila School District have filed complaints of racial discrimination against their superintendent for allegedly making inappropriate comments.

A group of female staffers at Showalter Middle School says the superintendent, Ethelda Burke, once referred to them as slaves. Burke is herself black.

“I couldn’t believe my ears she would refer to professional African-American women as slaves,” teacher Sandra Goins told NWCN-TV.

Athletic and activities director J.D. Hill claimed that Burke “makes racially derogatory statements.” Hill also wrote in his complaint that Burke said he was hiring too many people of color and said he was “making the district look too black” and turning her district into a “ghetto.”

“When I walked into her office she said, ‘Hey, J-Dark, how are you doing?’ J-Dark was my name for Ethelda, my pet name for a month, in a professional environment,” Hill told NWCN.

Staffers told NWCN they were hesitant to complain about Burke because she is black.

“If she wasn’t a person of color, me personally, I would have gone after her long before now,” bus driver Ritchie Coleman told the station.

The employees’ attorney filed the complaints with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The district, the superintendent, and the board declined to comment citing personnel issues.

Joan Mell, the attorney representing the employees, has written a letter asking the board for Burke’s immediate suspension.

Burke came to the Tukwila district in 2007 from Tacoma.

The Tukwila school district is one of the most diverse in the state; seventy percent of the children are minorities.

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

  • dfas

    and the taxpayers will pick up the bill for this lawsuit…..

    • Voice of Reason

      I’m surprised that you were able to get your comment on this blog.

      The Commie-moderator for this blog has a very heavy hand on the throttle this afternoon.

    • MoreDomesticSpyingStories

      Government found another story to takeover. Unelected officials took over Washington and the media after the coup and cover up. Even most of the comments online are financed with your tax dollars. Big brother is trying to create the perception of public opinion while burying the truth. They think you can’t handle the truth. Fact of the matter is we have no democracy, president, and freedom of press is an illusion.

      Our next election is shaping up to be as big of a sham as the last. Do you know why Sarah Palin’s bus tour was really canceled? Do you know why she stayed 30 miles away from the second debate and chose the death of Steve Jobs to announce that she’s not running? Know what leaked out? Sarah Palin and Cain aren’t in the race for the same reason, the truth leaked out.

      Search PalinsDirtyLittleSecret for the biggest cover up in world history!

      • workingman

        DONT CARE!!!!


      Welcome to our

    • micmorri

      “The Tukwila school district is one of the most diverse in the state; seventy percent of the children are minorities”— Doesn’t that mean that they are the majority not the minority?

      • Shannara

        ACTUALLY, the term minority is reflective of the United States as a whole, in which Caucasians are STILL the majority.

      • setanta

        no never no way—they remain a protected species ,the same way they do in nyc public schools where minorities are the majority.
        it’s only newspeak.

  • BS

    Is it just me, or do the those filing the complaint sound just a tad racist…“If she wasn’t a person of color, me personally, I would have gone after her long before now.” Really?

    • Steve

      That was my first thought….

    • Shannara

      Duh!! Everybody in this situation is racist. The superintendent is a self-hating racist idiot. The staffers are just as racist because they can only tell if their being discriminated against IF the discrimanator is white. Just ridiculous

    • bill

      or how about the fact that one of the people who filed the complaint was evidently discriminating against whites when he hired way too many black people.

    • CrackerTom

      Think about all the comedians and TV personalities that make a fair amount of their ‘performance’ all about persons of color referring to persons of color in derogatory terms and then laughing about how only they can get away with it. Fair-is-Fair and if it’s offensive when the colorless say it why wouldn’t it be offensive when colored say it. Of course I’m sure if you could play back a video of these people’s personal lives over say the last two or three years that most use those slangs when hang in with their friends and family. Another case of double standards of using race as an excuse to complain and make someone else responsible for giving them something they otherwise aren’t entitled to.

  • aleis38

    as a black person..I say stop being so damn sensitive 1.
    2…be professional! nobody needs to be reminded of their color all the damn time.
    we all human. only people with low self esteem point out race as a negative.

    • CommandStation

      I hope you are referring to the black community (sensitive). They are ultra sensitive and racist – even after all what the Irish did back in the Civil War and the whites who walked with the blacks during the civil rights movement.

      • StopAndThink

        “I hope you are referring to the black community (sensitive).”

        Clearly, NOTHING gets past you, CS.

      • aleis38

        fair enough. its alot whites did for blacks through-out the centuries. sadly the ignorance of you guys` few has effected all. i think its going to get better…honestly. but we still young in being civilized in america…so…you all will have to be patient with us :)
        or fight with us…which is pointless. its gotten neither of is anywhere.
        we still have to deal with the identity issues (we are not africans) and the mindset of whites in power. its rough.

      • CommandStation

        And … I feel like a black man being held down by the black man! Peace out!

    • Mary in LA

      Well said!

      • jamman

        except for the ‘we all human. Tgat is bad grammar.

    • vickie

      I am a white woman from the backwoods of MS.I agree with you 100%

    • StopAndThink

      I agree. Frankly, most of the resentful comments by non-blacks in this blog seem to be reactions to the kind of things you reference. In my 40+ years of life as a white male, I have only met a handful of hateful whites. By far, where I did see negativity it was a reaction to the kind of things you reference. In all cases, judging others by the content of their characters vs. the outward characteristics with which they were born will allow doers to achieve, rocks sink to the bottom and to see other people more than other colors.

    • Jack

      aleis38, If you want to be treated professionally, try using proper grammar and punctuation and show you’ve had a minimum of education.

      • aleis38

        nah. on the internet its lazy writing style. deal with it. u must be old…

  • Charles U. Farley

    “If she wasn’t a person of color, me personally, I would have gone after her long before now,” bus driver Ritchie Coleman told the station.

    Does that really surprise anyone??????

    • MrObstat

      Sounds like something Eric [affirmative action] Holder would say!

  • JP2012

    “The Tukwila school district is one of the most diverse in the state; seventy percent of the children are minorities.”

    Classic liberal thinking…a majority of minorities = diversity.

    • Jean Deux

      thanks! now i know where not to move!!!!!

      • Kimberly

        I used to live near Tukwila, it is a beautiful town with very nice people. There are many worse places to live, believe me. Very little racism, but there are a few people with chips on their shoulders, just like anywhere else.

    • blahblah

      70% are minorities … isn’t that an oxymoron?

  • Typical

    “If she wasn’t a person of color, me personally, I would have gone after her long before now,” bus driver Ritchie Coleman told the station.”

    Yup – par for the course – stay strong!!!

  • Eric

    “If she wasn’t a person of color, me personally, I would have gone after her long before now,” bus driver Ritchie Coleman told the station.

    Wrong is wrong, why cut her slack just because of her skin color?

    • SliderX69

      That’s what I thought, but now days its a black world and everyone owes them something.

    • Deskboy

      Black people do that all the time.

  • Recon2

    I suspect that there is more here than meets the eye. Perhaps Ms. Burke refuses to buy in to the racial victimology meme and must be taught a lesson.

  • ed357

    This will be an interesting case…….

    How does a black boss “racially discriminate” against black employees?

    Inappropriate and demeaning language makes it a hostile work environment……..

    but “racial discrimination”……..I think not.

    • Shannara

      Ed357, it IS racial discrimination because she has taken special time out of her day ONLY to harass her BLACK employees not the WHITE ones, the BLACK ones. I guess it’s unbeknownst to you that SOME black people do discriminate against other people in their race. Ex: there’s always a dark skin vs. light skin issue. I’ve even heard SOME black people talk about how much they hate their own skin color and others that are black. It’s just like how some white people want to be black and dislike other whites. Look it up! It’s actually very fascinating and even more ridiculous.

    • jamman

      Obviously White People are behind it all. somehow.

    • Steve

      Why can’t a black boss discriminate against black employees? How is it any different than white college admissions officers discriminating against white college applicants?

      At the end of the day, if the person takes action (or refrains from action) because of race, that is discrimination. It doesn’t matter what color that peron is.

      • Shannara

        Discrimination is wrong no matter who it’s coming from.

      • Derron

        You mean like affrimative action?

  • luckydog

    give them an inch and thy will take a mile.

  • gospace

    “The Tukwila school district is one of the most diverse in the state; seventy percent of the children are minorities.”

    Are you certain you know the meaning of the word diverse? 70% are all the same- or are they all different? Also, 70%, last I checked, is a majority. So, the majority makes up a minority, therefore, diversity exists… My head hurts.

    • Jennifer

      Good one! I concur with the logic (believe it or not). These employees should have spoke out LONG ago. Shows how decades of “protect your own” and “put the collective over the individual” simply does NOT make sense.

    • Brian

      For the last several decades, if not longer, “diversity” has meant “anything but whilte”.

      Given this definition, it makes more sense when these people state, “The Tukwila school district is one of the most diverse in the state; seventy percent of the children are minorities”.

      • Brian

        Correction: For the last several decades, if not longer, “diversity” has meant “anything but WHITE”.

        Sorry for the typo

    • Kimberly

      The Seattle area, of which Tukwila is a part, also has a large asian population, generous numbers of people from the islands, and also from Eastern Europe, and Russia. There are also several American Indian tribes in the area, including one in Tukwila. That 70% number is not black, it is actually a diverse population.

  • shempus

    Diversity should not be a goal in of itself. It is actually an obstacle to be overcome if necessary. Forced busing and forced integration in the name of diversity, as most tear-jerk reactionary lefite-inspired policies, never works.

  • Awah

    But we’ve been told for decades that blacks can’t be racist. Their suit should be thrown out and those employees should be ordered to attend sensitivity training for even suggesting such a thing, right? Or should people just grow up and quit being so weak that they feel the need to file lawsuits whenever someone hurts their widdy feewings?

  • Ryan

    “Seventy percent of the children are minorities”? Last time I checked 70% is a majority.

    • Daisy

      Math is not eternally consistent in some parts of the world. Seattle and D.C. are 2 of the notable exemptions from the regular rules governing reality.

      • evan

        minorities in the sense of race. non-whites are the minority in this great country….

    • blahblah

      the majority are minorities … thus it is ‘diverse’

  • schwartzer

    Watch swindling the goyim on YT-both parts

  • enoughAlready911

    The predictable genious of Progressive Socialists.

  • richhenk

    You know, blacks aren’t the only population which has been enslaved. The word ‘slave’ is used all the time in the context of work. I do understand that it might strike a nerve, but offense is taken and not given. I am a little sick though of all the thin-skinned people in this world who cry every time something doesn’t go their way, or they don’t get what they want.

    • Bill in Tennessee

      In fact, the word “slave” comes from a corruption of the word “slav” meaning (yes, you guessed it) Europeans of Slavic descent who were pressed into forced labor. Thus Slavs eventually became “slaves” in our language. Black slaves were fairly late arrivals to that now-defunct (except in parts of Africa) institution. For some reason, slavery is practiced in the more primitive parts of Africa, as it has been from before the white man ever set foot on that continent.

      • Jennifer

        STOP WITH THE FACTS….you are making my brain ouchy.

  • Bill in Tennessee

    It’s a fun thing to watch when the Left begins devouring its own. The Left does that on a regular basis, but particularly when stressed out and when there is an absence of targets for their anger among the mainstream or the Right. So let the feeding frenzy begin…this will continue to play out over several months. What FUN!

  • lensman

    If I knew then what I know now, I would have picked my own cotton.

    • Dave

      Planned Parnethood and other abortion for profit operations are killing poor blacks before they even have a chance. One day they will realize what the liberals are doing to them. Black babies are aborted at a much higher rate than whites. Read Star Parker’s book about the black experience.

  • Lorenzo

    Liberals believe that “people of color” can never be racist, nor can white liberals, even when they clearly are. Ergo, these employees will be ignored by the media to protect the liberal narrative, or better, they will somehow turn the superintendent into a Tea Party activist. It it wasn’t for double standards, liberals would have no standards at all.

  • Mr. Redhat

    If she wasn’t a person of color, me personally, I would have gone after her long before now,” bus driver Ritchie Coleman told the station.

    Give me a break! This comment is racist in itself. Because she was black he waited to file a complaint. Hey Ritchie does it matter what color the skin is. Apparently to you it does. You’re the racist for profiling your boss.

    • Derron

      Eric Holder our Attorney General says black people cannot be racist?

  • Truly offended

    Simply feigning outrage because they see a pay day. Don’t see anyone complaing or being offended by all the rappers and athletes that use the N word towards one another daily. Not offended unless they see Ca$h that may possibly come their way.

  • Vo Reason

    Since when is 70% “diverse”? Would 90% people of color be even more “diverse”?

  • Steve

    It’s still the white mans fault.

  • jens

    We keep filling our courts with stupid lawsuits over someone getting their dam(n) feelings hurt – which really is all it boils down to – costing taxpayers money, etc…. because someone thinks they see a payout on their horizon – the new American way – wants to be rich but doesn’t want to actually have to work for it – just easier to sue sue sue.

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