What White People Don’t Get

This week I listened to a Politically Re-Active podcast entitled: Shaun King on Controversy, Color, and Kaepernick. Shaun King is a civil rights activist who mainly uses social media to discuss race relations. During the podcast, the hosts of the podcasts ask King about whether he thinks there is hope for improvement regarding police brutality in America. King tells them he is hopeful, but unfortunately racism in America is getting worse. King states how during President Obama’s term, hate groups around the country increased significantly. He also explained how drastically the numbers of police related deaths and incarcerations have gone … Read more

Trump’s Racist Tweets

Sadly, my main source of news these past few weeks has been Twitter. If you’ve played around with Twitter, you know that it is intended to grab audience attention with short statements and hashtags. After scrolling through my own feed, I’ve just begun to browse hashtags that are “trending”, meaning lots of people are using them in their own posts. Today, I was struck by one hashtag in specific- “PABPOTUS”. At first glance, I was uninterested. After grazing over the remaining hashtags, though, I realized that I knew what all of them meant except for this one, in specific. As … Read more

Diversity Conversation(s)

Race is not talked about at Muhlenberg. One of the programs at Muhlenberg, and honestly the only program, that is mandatory for students to increase awareness about diversity is the Sedehi Diversity Project (a documentary theater project created by students, culminating in a performance for incoming First Years at orientation). I applaud all those involved in the emotional and extremely valuable play that is intended to promote not only race talks, but conversation about all types of diversity. It is obvious that this project is extremely needed, not only in the context of Muhlenberg as an institution, but based on … Read more

Time’s Up White People

For too long have white people ignored the discussion of race and actively avoided responsibility to end racism. No, not all white people, but the undeniable majority have clearly taken this path as it is 2019 and America’s culture is still overtly racist, and our systems remain institutionally racist. While I do believe we live in a morally unjust world, I personally think the majority of white people do not intend to be so hateful and dehumanizing although their actions perpetrate it further. Rather, I believe white fragility is holding too many white people back therefore coming off the opposite … Read more

Thriving or Surviving: A Discussion on Black Student Success in PWIs

Black students in predominantly white institutions are, often, discussed in literature as objects of struggle amongst their white counterparts. Their experiences are reduced to micro-aggressions, theories of assimilation, and conflict avoidance, just to name a few. While all of these elements play a role in the minority experience within a PWI, they should not be the only lenses through which black students’ narratives are analyzed. Many black students within predominantly white institutions are excelling on their campuses; whether it is the captain of a team, a research assistant, resident advisor, or the coordinator of a volunteer group, these students are … Read more

President William Compares Blacks and Jews (Oy Vey)

In 2015, racist posts were made targeting black students on several campuses, including ours, on the anonymous app Yik-Yak. The Huffington Post wrote an article shortly after asking 3 Presidents of private liberal arts colleges to speak about what they’ve learned from recent student activism around race. President John Williams was one of those three Presidents. President Williams represents the Muhlenberg campus in everything he does, something that inherently comes with the title of “President.” This power and representation may be the only things many may see about Muhlenberg, therefore, the small statements he may make here and there come … Read more

Talking About Race: Performativity

Norms prove to be incredibly strong motivating factors in dictating social interaction. Following norms is like following the rules, they give people a feeling that they’re acting acceptably. This lends especially helpful when one finds themselves in an ambiguous situation where they’re unsure of how to act. In white American culture three ground rules provide guidelines for normative social behavior. These three ground rules are the politeness protocol, the academic protocol, and the colorblind protocol (D. W. Sue, 2013). The politeness protocol dictates people should be polite when engaging with others. Consequently, it discourages discussion of topics that are potentially … Read more