He was an ordained minister at the age of 10.
He ran for the Senate in New York four times, for mayor
of New York City and for President on the Democrat
ticket, but has
yet to win an election—or even make a good showing.
One of the few things that gave me comfort where
Sharpton is concerned: there`s no
Al Sharpton, Jr. (As far as I know.)
But then I saw the cover story
picture in the recent Phoenix New Times and
There he was: a miniature Al. [Kid
Sharpton, by Jimmy Magahern, February 3, 2003]
His name is Jarrett Maupin II. The resemblance is
uncanny, but he is not a blood relation. He is
Sharpton`s new protégé.
It began with a protest rally at
Saguaro High School.
One student, who happened to be black, was asked to
turn his hat around.
He refused and began to argue with school security and
administrators. When threatened with everything from
detention to expulsion, he accused the staff of racism.
He was being singled out.
The student was suspended and arrested for trespassing,
which suggests that he refused to leave campus after
being suspended. (School officials are not allowed to
Maupin is President of the Phoenix chapter of
National Action Network, Sharpton`s organization,
while attending an elite private school,
St. Mary`s High. He organized a protest rally in
front of Saguaro High School.
The school district caved.
The Saguaro student`s punishment was reduced—from three
days suspension to one.
The squeaky wheel may get the grease. But that doesn`t
mean a wrong has been made right. More often than not,
it just stops the noise.
17 year-old Jarrett Maupin is emulating his idol, Al
even refers to himself as
"mini-me." Maupin became an ordained minister
at 14 and is now seeking a city council seat in next
It would be kind of sweet, actually…if it were not so
So what does America`s future hold in the way of young
found a lot of truth in this—but with Maupin as the
perpetrator, not the victim.
The circumstances surrounding his sudden departure seem
to be a matter of debate. In his junior year, Maupin
claims he was attending a school dance when a janitor
approached him and accosted him with
He transferred to St. Mary`s—bringing several other
black students with him.
Two of them were star
basketball players. They now wished to compete
against Brophy for St.Mary`s.
But the school district has a no-compete policy. Student
athletes are prohibited from joining more than one
school team in a 12-month period.
The students were told they could not compete for
St.Mary`s until the following year.
But Maupin had a
trick up his sleeve.
According to the
New Times` Magahern:
"Maupin went to bat
for the two students and won them a hardship waiver
granting them the opportunity to try out for St. Mary`s
team based on the `extenuating circumstances` that they
had transferred not by choice, but because of a pattern
of racial harassment at Brophy.
According to Magahern, St. Mary`s is thrilled
with their new students.
"Of course, the
school—Brophy`s archrival since the late 1950s—was also
thrilled by the addition of the two star athletes Maupin
was able to win for its basketball team. In its first
game against Brophy with the addition of transferees
Whyte and Rodney Brown, St. Mary`s was able to roundly
defeat the players` former school."
"pattern of racial harassment" at Brophy
Preparatory could not have been too detrimental—because
one the students transferred back there.
Brophy is a privately-funded prep school. Unlike
parochial St. Mary`s which is funded by the diocese,
Brophy probably relies on alumni support through
booster clubs for much of its funding.
So this transfer of students probably cost Brophy in
more ways than one.
Given the nature of rivalry among
private schools, why St. Mary`s would
participate in this under-handed scheme is not the
question. The question is: how did they pull it off?
Back to Jarrett Maupin Jr.
The truth, revealed by a flood of
blog entries (hurray for the internet!) and by
letters to the New Times editor by Brophy alum:
Maupin was a sub-standard student with an unacceptable
attendance record and a flair for the dramatic.
recalls a classroom incident where Maupin suggested
that pianos were racist because the white keys were
larger than the black.
In another case, Maupin suggested chalkboards were an
example of racism because they were called
blackboards even though they were green.
According to a
Brophy alum, a party not bound by privacy laws,
Maupin did not choose to transfer to St. Mary`s; he was
thrown out for his poor academic performance.
But he delivered the basketball players necessary for a
St. Mary`s victory.
What does St. Mary`s give him in exchange? Anything he
wants. Including, but not limited to:
- An office in the
school`s library where he works for Al Sharpton`s
National Action Network. (He also has an office in
downtown Phoenix where he spends most of his after
- Christine Gore, a
secretary for the school acts as Maupin`s secretary to
keep an appointment book for him and to page him when
- He uses the school`s
conference rooms and supplies to organize various
events, including protest rallies, on behalf of
National Action Network such as the one at Saguaro
High School (see above).
- He rarely, if ever,
attends class yet the school records his
grade point average as a low-A.
The New Times` Magahern followed Jarrett and his
family to various events, including an
MLK celebration. At this rally, Maupin`s sister was
approached their father with a friend of hers in tow—a
white girl whom Maupin`s father suspected had her sights
set on young Jarrett.
comment: "She was at a little party we had and
was tugging at Jarrett`s shirttail, trying to get him to
come with her…Jarrett just dug his feet in the ground.
He`s too smart for that."
Of course, this may
not be ant-white racism—just politics. Maupin Sr. added
still have a problem with the black man and the
The New Times delicately concurs that a
controversial relationship could hurt Maupin`s
Or maybe this family has made a business out of fighting
to promote it within their own home.
Maupin is now seeking a seat on the Phoenix City
Council—he turns 18, the age of eligibility, just five
months before the election.
The race racket—there`s a new generation coming up!
Bryanna Bevens [email
her] is a political consultant and former chief of staff
for a member of the California State Assembly.