Ebonics has been criticized by everyone from poet Maya Angelou to New York Times columnists, and the advice has backed down.
Today, the dialect is referred to as African American Vernacular English, and a person moving between two varieties of language is known as a code change. Culturally, it is when people change their style of speech or behavior to accommodate. Some argue that it is more about survival and eliminates diverse expression.
These outrages of the moment were largely contained in educational circles. There were no 24-hour networks with hosts peddling anger reinforced by the anonymity of unverified social media posts.
If that had happened now, some Oklahoma lawmakers would be lining up to ban them. This is how some elected leaders deal with things they do not understand.
Do you remember the common core? It was an attempt to establish national education standards so that states were on the same page.
It was adopted by conservatives and liberals – including former Republican Governor of Oklahoma Mary Fallin and State Superintendent Janet Barresi – until President Barack Obama backed it up. Then he became the right-wing bogeyman, fueled by emerging social media and politicized broadcast networks.
Conservative states have passed laws repealing the standards, including Oklahoma as Fallin and Barresi switched sides.