The old saying that “sticks and stones will break my bones but words will never hurt me” was unfit, outdated, and misused from the start. Physical injuries may leave scars, blemishes, and bruises, but that degree of pain is usually ephemeral.
Words stay in your mind forever because of the recurrence of their use in different situations and memories associated with when they were initially said. So, they can be as cutting as trying to do brain surgery with a fully conscious patient.
Malicious statements that relate to this country’s warped history of race do nothing beneficial for our citizens. They only agitate the ever-sensitive wounds minorities and the majority race have today of what went wrong in the past. To turn a blind eye, put your earplugs in or stay mum about critically challenging happenings in our lives only perpetuates the problems we have.
People need to feel comfortable on campus and not be reminded about the times by using racially coded words or actions that send flashbacks about the awfulness of racial oppression. It is unwanted contact for those words to be spoken to someone and it is an unwanted reaction for your superiors at your college not to respond in a timely manner.
It is those things that are unsaid and should be said that sting you the most. Talking about the issues is always a start to generating an effect, in any event.
It is the stimulant of a movement that could initialize change to bring forth a better community. All people of any establishment need to feel safe there and wanted there to get the most desired experience out of their participants.
I’m happy the university system listened to the people who are funding the colleges and paying its tab to operate. That shows humility. Now I politely request that a formal action plan be created to immediately soothe the suffering of the affected community members and immediate rebuke of any cultural narrow-mindedness on campus with any occasion of it being reported to university officials.
Applicants might withdraw their applications. Fans may start staying home instead of attending school events. Donors might contribute their money elsewhere. Students might transfer or may just stay home because of the cultural animosities.
More importantly, the faculty might follow along with some of these weakening ways for the university. These include athletics, academics, extracurriculars and all other university-affiliated activities that may impede the success of the university system as a whole due to the disreputable behaviors of some who interact with the university community.
The University of Missouri president hit the exit, but there is still a heap of work to do on campus, on the ground in the community and in respect to external relations in the publications.
Jordan Thomas Cooper is a 2015 graduate of the University of South Carolina. He is the first African-American to serve in both the governor and lieutenant governor’s office as an aide in South Carolina and has worked on several Republican candidates’ national campaigns. He is also the second and youngest black speechwriter for a presidential campaign.