Graduation day

GraduationDay

Layloni Marshall, an African American community activist and mother of three, gave her nephew, Melvin Berry, a card with the following message on the occasion of his graduation from Oakland High School earlier this year. We reprint it here as a contribution to discussions of racism, stereotypes, reality and struggle.

Dear Melvin-Pelvin,

Society says...

You're supposed to be a

teen dropout,

Society says...

You're supposed to be a

statistic,

Society says...

You're supposed to be a

nothing.

But Melvin Pelvin showed

Society that a young black man with plenty of swag can do whatever he puts his mind to!

Melvin-Pelvin!!

You did it.

Melvin Berry has since entered college in Houston.

Photo: (University of California)

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