Letters to the editor

Chi Omega members also affected by story

Dear Editor,

After all the publicity that Chi Omega has received over this award, we all know that it wasn’t a good idea. However, most of the stories have focused on how it affected the leaders of the black organizations. Has anyone stopped to think about how this is affecting the women of Chi Omega and other sororities? We keep hearing statements from Shanelle Smith, president of NAACP, saying how angry she is and how sensitivity training is not enough and that the award was given to a white woman who doesn’t understand what it means to be black.

However, the woman who received the award does have a population of black friends and the few individuals involved in the concept of the award seem to be anything but racially insensitive. They are well aware of the differences between being white and being black, but choose not to let it interfere with how they live their lives. What is not racially sensitive is how a few members of the black community have treated the women of Chi Omega and other Greek women.

The award wasn’t given with malicious intent, but these women being spit upon, being stalked by news crews, being slandered in newspapers and on television, having signs posted saying they are racist (which has been stated many times that they are not by the parties involved), having stones thrown at them and being physically threatened and harassed is malicious.

Maybe Chi Omega shouldn’t be the only ones required to attend sensitivity training. Seeing this story get blown out of proportion, we can all agree that it probably isn’t in the best interest of anyone involved to run a story on the front page of the newspaper until all sides have been clarified. If the Stater would have waited until after the panel discussion to run this story, most of this could have been avoided. The original story printed was nothing but speculation, lies and slander. Once the truth came out and both sides were understood, the story was balanced, fair and left little room for interpretation.

Chris Cousino

Kent resident

Biloxi still a life changing experience

Dear Editor,

After reading Kevin Clark’s consecutive articles about the spring break trip to Biloxi, I find myself confused. Clark spends the majority of his first column writing about how he had finally “got the point” due to a performance in the talent show on the last night of the trip. The Black Squirrels was the name of that group. Clark neglects to mention that he was a member. Nevertheless, it was an excellent article he wrote about himself. Did he get the point? After reading his last column, I would say no.

Maybe Clark is right. Perhaps when we arrived in Biloxi, the student body did set up a smaller version of our campus. A majority of us did the best we could with what we had, while the others found better ways to spend time, such as complaining and pointing out everything that was going wrong. Things were not perfect. I can understand how helpless one felt when arriving at a worksite that had yet to receive supplies and was still in need of major electrical work. This is the adversity about which Clark so eloquently writes in his first column.

I agree that the organization and planning of the trip to Biloxi left something to be desired. Things do not work out perfectly in real life. “The best laid schemes of mice and men often go awry.” As people we have a choice to make: Adapt and overcome or complain about having hurt feelings in the middle of a Federal Disaster Area. Sometimes, people hurt each other’s feelings inadvertently. To me, the trip to Biloxi was a life-altering experience. I have several new acquaintances, I’ve seen firsthand how resilient humankind is, and I’ve also learned that a lot of the problems we deal with daily, such as distasteful jokes at an awards ceremony, are trivial.

Joel W. Newburn

Sophomore political science major