Our View: We’re so close

DKS Editors

May 4th updates make headlines even 40 years later

It has taken Kent State many years to renew its image from the May 4th tragedy some 40 years ago. Now, some people are worried that we’re turning back the clock when we should be moving ahead.

For decades, popular culture has defined Kent State as a place of protests and shootings, completely overshadowing many of the nationally accredited programs and other academic accomplishments this university has made.

So when new developments to the Kent State shootings audio saga came to light during the weekend, it was understandable that some students were less than thrilled that Kent State’s May 4th tragedy was making headlines again.

For the last 40 years, the university has been trying to move past the days of rioting and chaos, all while respectfully remembering the dead. It would seem that new May 4th headlines would only bring back a negative reputation to the university after the students have worked so hard over the years to overcome the Kent State stereotype.

It’s completely understandable that students want to move on and not be reminded of the shootings every time they tell someone they go to Kent State. And these new headlines are only going to make it worse.

But we are so close to a better understanding of what happened 40 years ago, it would be shameful not to press on and search for answers. Both the protestors and guardsmen have been vilified for the past four decades, and all parties involved deserve some closure.

In order for the history of May 4th not to be one-sided, it’s important that we continue to seek out the facts. If not, there will never be a good consensus of what happened that day.

Realistically, we will never know the truth. Everyone there that day had a different viewpoint of what happened and truth is subjective. But we have the responsibility to at least collect all of the facts, even if it does put May 4th back in the headlines.

The above editorial is the consensus opinion of the Daily Kent Stater editorial board.