Know Your Facts

Over the weekend, our campus emails were blasted with a message from campus safety regarding a gun, which turned out to be a BB gun disguised as a real gun near campus. My friends and I obviously all saw the email and started to discuss the matter. I sat and listened to what they all had to say, and of course when any weapon is found it is quite frightening as this is supposed to be a “safe” place for all of us. However, one friends’ mind went in a complete opposite direction of what we were all talking and thinking … Read more

The Whitesplaining Epidemic

To all of the people who identify as women out there, have you ever had the experience where you are talking to a man and during the course of the conversation he feels the need to explain something to you, oftentimes in a patronizing or condescending way? This is called mansplaining and it is a phenomenon that women face even if they have extensive knowledge on the given topic. For issues of race, there is whitesplaining. Similar to mansplaining, whitesplaining happens when a white person tries to explain something to a person of color in either an oversimplified or even … Read more

Listen to Tupac. Really listen to Tupac.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016 marked the 20th anniversary of the death of Tupac Shakur. Tupac was a prominent hip-hop artist in the early 1990s well known for his deep, progressive lyrics in popular songs such as “Changes” and “Keep Ya Head Up.” However, he was more than just a rapper – he was a poet, a philosopher, and an activist. From a young age, he expressed incredible insight on contentious topics such as education, poverty, feminism, and police brutality. Recently, there has been a clear rise in national awareness and conversation about the roles of race and racism in modern … Read more

The White Man as The ‘Boogie Man’

In the classroom, when we talk about who benefits from systems of power & privilege, the answer is usually White, straight, cis males. As I continue to have conversations about race with my White friends (males especially), this response is usually one not received well. I’m often met with anger and frustration – an emotional response to what has been described to me as feeling ‘attacked.’ As one male friend put it, “blaming everything on White guys makes us all out to be the Boogie Man – and not all of us are.” I think this sort of response is … Read more

What’s A Patriot, Anyway?

Growing up in Massachusetts this word, “patriot,” was thrown in my face a lot. We even have a holiday day celebrating patriots, complete with parades, reenactments, and no work or school. It wasn’t until I came to college when I asked a friend whether we got off school for Patriot’s Day that I realized, from her very confused expression, that this day is not a national holiday and many people have never even heard of it. A recent article I read in The New York Times Magazine by Wesley Morris, Colin Kaepernick and Who Gets to be Called a ‘Patriot’, … Read more

Identity, Awareness, and Change

Last semester, I took an introduction to anthropology course because I thought it would be interesting to learn about other cultures and societies. This class taught me many valuable concepts, but one word that stuck out to me was the word, positionality. Positionality refers to how anthropologists define their background and how their identities influence their research. I found this quite interesting, because it made me examine who I am and where I fit in the big picture of society and race relations. I am a Chinese American, adopted when I was 16 months old by a white couple living … Read more