The Civil Writer Magazine

Intelligence is the ability to apply knowledge. Knowledge is the collection of skills and information a person has acquired through experience and school. In Brown v. Board, the Supreme Court agreed with Thurgood Marshall that segregated schooling violated the 14th Amendment's guarantee of equal protection of law. Thurgood Marshall's fight wasn't to get intelligence for Black students but a share of all the knowledge residing in white schools that had more money, resources, up to date books and classes on math, English, writing, Social Studies and history .... than poor Black schools.

Intelligence is the ability to acquire and apply knowledge and skills. It is something we fail to reinforce in our children that they have mastered intelligence from birth but must acquire and apply knowledge and skills from school. In the 20th century African American children were very intelligent students taught in one room classes that didn't permit them from exploring the world. No money, resources, books, paper or even in most rural counties no qualified teachers. Inspite of all those obstacles Black children were weaponized with a God-given intelligence ready to absorb the most complicated information there was to offer. All black military pilots who trained in the United States trained at Moton Field, the Tuskegee Army Air Field and were educated at Tuskegee University, located near Tuskegee, Alabama. These men were some of these poor rural Black intelligent children who acquired knowledge and the skills to fly. George Washington Carver was an American agricultural scientist and inventor. He actively promoted alternative crops to cotton and methods to prevent soil depletion. He was once one of those intelligent children learning in a one room shack who acquired knowledge and skills.

Intelligent you are you go to school for knowledge and skills. Now the caveat to all this is some people are capable of getting skills without requiring college like John H. Johnson the owner of Ebony Magazine. Johnson attended an overcrowded and segregated elementary school. Such was his love of learning, he repeated the eighth grade rather than discontinue his education, as there was no public high school for African Americans in Arkansas City or anywhere else in Desha County. He attended high school in Chicago, IL but never went to college. He was offered a tuition scholarship to the University of Chicago, but he thought he would have to decline it, because he could not figure out a way to pay for expenses other than tuition. John was born intelligent.

Prince Rogers Nelson was one of the most accomplished musicians who finished high school but never acquired a musical degree yet he could share the stage with any Julliard student who could play the scales of Mozart's music. Prince had intelligence from birth.

Trapped inside many children is an autodidact polymathēs; self-taught children who can and will have intelligence that spans a significant number of different subject areas like math, music, electronics, medicine, science and history. They have to be told that they are born intelligent than to allow them to go through life thinking that they are not.