This is an assignment that I struggle to write as these issues, to be frank, make me want to rage. The fact that racism and other forms of bigotry are this prevalent in our community, on campus and as a whole, in the year 2014 is very disappointing. I was already struggling with the fact that the non-discrimination ordinance recently voted in by Springfield City Council is facing serious opposition. It was already making me feel ashamed to call the city of Springfield and this community my home. Despite that I was hopeful that within the academic community here on campus there would be a beacon of hope for the change I would like to see here in Southwest Missouri. Then I started seeing the reports online about what happened during homecoming. In this single incident of inappropriate behavior of the campus community my hopes were dashed. Unfortunately the administration’s response to this incident have done nothing to restore my faith in the University.
I feel that the staff at The Standard did an outstanding job covering this issue in this week’s paper. I admire their move to show exactly what was said. Though these kinds of situations make people uncomfortable we need to see the harsh truth of how things really are. I feel there are many issues involving rights of many groups that will never be corrected as long as we sugar coat the issues and make light of how serious things are. Bravo to our Journalist for shining a light. I hope that they will continue to do this, both with issues on campus, and with issues in the community.
President Smart’s Interview on this issue: