Bad News for Outlaws: The Remarkable Life of Bass Reeves

Book Summary: 

Bass Reeves was born a slave and knew violence. Reeves developed a keen sense of right and wrong that helped him become an admired U.S. Marshall that worked with a sense of justice. Both intelligent and persistent, Reeves made more than 3,000 arrests in his 30 year career.

Year: 
2010
Author: 
Vaunda  Micheaux Nelson
Illustrator: 
R. Gregory Christie
Publisher: 
Carolrhoda Books
Guiding Question: 

This story portrays the amazing life of an African American man. It also shows some examples of prejudice and discrimination. Who is biased and who has been discriminated against? 

Howard’s Format from You Can’t Teach What You Don’t Know (73-85): 

Honesty- The author tells us that Bass was “respected and he was hated. Some whites didn’t like the notion of a black man with a badge.” How could this attitude make it difficult for Bass to do his job?

Empathy- Have you ever been hated or not treated right because you’re different from someone else? How did this affect you? 

Advocacy- One way that some students are not treated right is when they are bullied. Look for students who are being bullied and make a plan with your teachers to stop the bullying. Bass would thought it was the right thing to do. 

Action- With your teacher, go to the ADL website and select some of the books from the Books Matter page for classroom study. You might also be interested in doing fund raising projects to help raise money for “No Longer a Target” that helps people who are being bullied.

The section at the back of the book “Further Reading and Websites” provides information to continue with lessons about bias and discrimination.