The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

Letters to the Editor

Students make the march in support of black men ()
Students make the march in support of black men ()

Staff editorial missed the mark
-Evan Welkin ’06 I read your weak appeal against “armchair activism” with great dismay. If the Guilfordian would like to see more activism on campus, perhaps it should expand its definition of what activism means. In the very same issue as your misguided editorial, I read no less than 3 articles that spoke directly to the healthy activist community on campus. AIDS conferences, the Food Not Bombs soup kitchen and dialogue about race relations as part of the tenure process aren’t activism anymore? Perhaps they’re not as important because you can do them sitting down. Perhaps you don’t count them because they’re not necessarily headed up by unbathed white students? I have worked in Guilford’s Project Community for 2 years and seen and helped coordinate a huge number of service and activism related actvities that have only been a small part of the whole body of work being done here. GANe might be gone at Guilford, but it is not for lack of activism in the form of vigils, voting drives, conference planning, volunteer work, spiritually motivated service and class work for social justice. The examples you specifically criticized in your piece, the loss of Amnesty International club and the Oaxaca solidarity project, do not necessarily even represent failed or ‘armchair’ activism. Folks used the Amnesty International budget to travel to the School of the Americas Protest this year and the Oaxaca project got people talking about something most often buried under piles of leaf blown leaves and irresponsible student reporting. You have a lot of guts to criticize activism at Guilford, and I suggest if any of your staff would like to be more a part of it they can come to me or the hundreds of other activists on campus who felt your editorial completely missed the mark. Elon gets better marks in the Princeton review because their activism consists of buying the Review a new swimming pool.

Indian stereotypes accepted on campus
Marshall Jeffries ’09

In late October, the Native American Club welcomed 3 prospective students from the Crow Reservation in Montana. These students were the family and friends of Peggy White, a well respected elder on the reservation, and a long-time friend of the multi-cultural education department at Guilford.
On Halloween, these students were assisting Peggy, when a Guilford student walked by dressed as Tiger Lilly, “Indian Princess.” The visitors were offended at the way that their culture was being misrepresented, and I was asked to politely mention it to the student. She reacted with a rather rude and insensitive response, and proceeded to wear her “costume.”
As Justin, Peggy’s son, sat down with me to eat lunch in the cafeteria, we listened to she and her group of friends as they griped about the situation…
As Vice President of the Native American Club on campus, I felt it was my responsibility afterwards to explain why the costume was offended through email to our Tiger Lilly. I compared her wearing that to me wearing blackface and dressing as Sambo. Both images are incorrect portrayals of an ethnic group, based on stereotypes. Her outfit was no more Indian than blackface is Africana.
Natives deal with the problem of seeing their culture mocked and incorrectly portrayed on a daily basis, and it affects not only self-esteem but performance in school. I am sorry that our prospective students had to go through the series of events that they did. I hope that… it will not affect their decision to come here…
Staff and students at this school should be continuously mindful of the messages that their actions send to students and prospective students about the value of a Guilford College education. How much does showing respect of other cultures matter here? We should think about how we would grade the school on a report card, when the seven core values are the criteria.

King’s Campaign begins at UNCG
Natasha N. Lake, UNCG

IN November, five UNCG and one Guilford woman decided it is time to take a stand for the honorable and deserving black men in our communities. “We’ve discovered that the statistics show the number of black men going to college and then finishing college is not sufficient or acceptable,” stated Brandi Johnson, one of the 6 coordinators.
According to the campaign’s coordinators, less than 50% of the black men finishing high school go on the college and out of those who go to college, less than 40% receive a degree within 6 years.
“We’ve started a campaign to raise awareness about the problem and to congratulate and appreciate the brothers who are making positive decisions every day” stated Natasha Lake, another coordinator. “Our men do not deserve to be bashed or stereotyped as animals, sespecially when so many of them are working to contradict the norms, daily.”
As of December 1, over 400 shirts have been ordered- 100 of those from Guilford’s populations. Jada Drew is the Guilford representative. When asked why she got involved, Jada responded, “I got involved in order to empower the young men who don’t represent the statistics.” Though she is an active participant in the Guilford community, Jada’s presence at other campus events lessened as she spent an estimated 210 hours working on the campaign. “It’s worth it,” she says, “I’m doing this because if I don’t, I’m not sure who will.”
Last Monday, the women who ordered the shirts marched at UNCG to show support in numbers. Though the women only traveled from College Ave. to the fountain in teh center of the cmampus, a tremendous impact was made in the Greensboro community. More marchers are being planned and organized for surrounding cities. To find out more or to order your shirt, e-mail the campaign’s administrative director, Brandi Johnson at [email protected].

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

The Guilfordian intends for this area to be used to foster healthy, thought-provoking discussion. Comments are expected to adhere to our standards and to be respectful and constructive. As such, we do not permit the use of profanity, foul language, personal attacks, or the use of language that might be interpreted as libelous. Comments are reviewed and must be approved by a moderator to ensure that they meet these standards. The Guilfordian does not allow anonymous comments, and requires a valid email address. The email address will not be displayed but will be used to confirm your comments.
All The Guilfordian Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *