Ignorance Is No Excuse

So come to find out, there are a large number of people who don’t know what racism is and have not a clue what the hell white privilege could be.

No, they aren’t gun tottin’, tobacky spittin’, Bush supportin’ [well…possibly] farm types who live out in the country. Nope. They are my classmates.

I’ve seen it in the D.O., Post Standard, and local news, but I don’t know how far the news has spread. I’ll give a brief run down, and let you read the articles for yourself.

Basically, a television show funded by my student fee was being produced for 8 months. The show was loosely based upon the Daily Show, having a news story type format with humorous reports and such. For those 8 months, this show aired. However, unlike the Daily Show, they didn’t air worthwhile, funny, or even slightly educational shows. They aired some of the most racist, sexist, homophobic and degrading material I have ever seen.

In an open forum I attended Wednesday night, students from across the campus voiced their outrage at both the producers of the show and the executive board of the channel. What was most upsetting was that it seemed that the people responsible for it do not regret their actions. It doesn’t even seem they understand what was wrong with their commentary. You can read about the community meeting here.

Tonight, there was a speak out, where members of the community were able to voice their thoughts to not only fellow faculty, staff and students, but the Syracuse community at large. You’ll be able to read about that at the Daily Orange sometime on Friday.

I wrote to the D.O., and they published my letter. I won’t go into it, because you all can just read it and get the idea of what I wanted to say. But I suggest you look at some of the other opinions submitted by students. Some are insightful, and some are upsetting.

This whole situation has truly upset me. To see such horrific scenes of racism in what is supposed to be a prestigious university is startling. Steps are being taken, but it doesn’t change the fact that people are hurt, afraid, and feel unsafe. Things need to change. And it needs to change soon.

If you read my article, you know what I feel people must do. I challenge all of you to do the same. Confront hate. Confront intolerance. Confront those who would do harm to others. It’s as simple as that.

Go out and make a difference.

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