Steve Tripp ’74

Steve Tripp, Class of 1974
Steve Tripp, Class of 1974 (son of Marv Tripp, Class of 1943)

These comments appeared in the Oakland Tribune in June 1974 in the “Letters to the Forum” section under the heading “A Graduating Tech Senior’s Message.”

On June 13th of this year I shall graduate from Oakland Technical High School. I am a white student attending a predominantly black high school. I am writing in the hope that more white students living within the boundaries of racially mixed schools will choose to attend these schools rather than private or otherwise exclusively white schools. Within the past six years racial encounterings [sic] have become less and less problem oriented and more and more possibility oriented. At my own school there has been a consistent drop in violence between races, with of course the exception of one act– the tragic death of Rita King… It is my belief that violent actions will stop only when all sides learn the facts about each other, put down their swords and begin to work together at the office, in social circles, in politics, community organizations, and in schools! We can no longer ignore other people’s problems for inevitably, they become all our problems. I suggest we learn to live together soon before we go much further. Inter-racial schools are a beginning, but they are a great beginning, for only in schools can we learn sufficiently not only the histories of all our people, but also the future, the promises of all our people.