In light of recent actions on campus, I’ve found myself in a difficult position of figuring out how to cover things from the press side. My last intention is to paint anyone’s pain and suffering into the simplicity of a news story, and I know so many members of our campus community are reeling at the loss of their sense of safety. The loss of their sense of importance. The loss of their sense of belonging.
As I struggled with finding the best way to cover all of this abhorrent insolence, I stumbled upon the obvious realization that no matter how difficult I find this situation, it simply isn’t, and will never be even remotely about me. As editor-in-chief, I have a duty to accurately and respectfully portray Black voices through The Pleiad’s platform. But as a white woman, I have no idea the difficulty that my Black peers are facing at this point in time, or at any point in time, for that matter.
I will never know the full trauma, hurt or pain of racism. I was born into whiteness, and thus I was born into the privilege of never having to be discriminated against by the color of my skin. It is my job and the job of my white peers on this campus and around the world to make sure that the generations who come after us, everyone is born into the privilege of never knowing racism.
No one should be judged based off the color of their skin, but living in a world where people are, we need to recognize that discrimination. We need to see it. We need to see people’s different backgrounds. We need to see people for who they are, but we also need to see what they’ve been through with the underlying notion that we may never truly understand the pain they’ve been through.
Just because we don’t know that pain personally doesn’t mean we can’t help put an end to it. We don’t need to relate to someone else’s struggle or trauma to support them, their humanity and their individualism.
Today, all articles that The Pleiad publishes will be dedicated to those affected by recent actions on campus. All other news will be put on hold in order to recognize the importance of acknowledging the situation at hand and acknowledging that it persists outside of the actions of the past two weeks. In order to put an end to actions like these, we must assess what has unfolded on campus, but we also must realize that this is far from the first time it has happened.
Today’s publication schedule does not intend to further bring attention to the ignorant, vile and insolent motivation behind the perpetrators of campus atrocities. Rather, we intend to dedicate today’s publication schedule to the people impacted.
The news is an outlet to shine importance on what deserves attention. Today and always, the voices of Black students on campus deserve attention. Sometimes shining a light on some subjects means silencing other matters and amplifying what needs to be heard.
I urge everyone on campus to attend the events we are made aware of in support of our campus belonging. Speak up. Use your voice to defend yourself and others. I encourage you to use this platform, The Pleiad, to do so. You are always welcome to write in guest notes and letters in order to uphold the principles upon which our publication was founded.
To those affected, I stand with you. My publication stands with you. Always.
To all of my white peers, use now, and forever for that matter, to simply listen. Find in yourself where you can make change, where you can be better and do better. Move toward making this change in our campus community and the world at large as well. In order to be part of the solution, we must first recognize our privilege as part of the problem.
Anyone with information about the incidents is encouraged to contact Albion College Campus Safety (email@example.com or 517-629-1234) or the Albion Department of Public Safety (517-629-3933) to make a report.