BUS needs to do more, talk less

Kevin Clark

I am a member of Black United Students. I may not be a part of the board, but those who know me know that I am present at the events and meetings. So, when I say this, it is not to be disrespectful – it is meant to provide insight and inspiration.

BUS is a sham.

This is not to discredit the work that the brothers and sisters do on campus. It is to simply state that our affairs seem to be out of order. The opinion among members of the black constituency is that we seem to have meetings about meetings, so we can meet about it two weeks from now.

From “Are You Authentically Black?” to “Light Skin vs. Dark Skin,” the topics try to explore relevant issues among the black populace yet fails to crack the surface. As my friend Kareem Mitchell would say, “You got the white man taking trips to Mars, yet we’re trying to figure out who’s black and who’s not?”

There has to be something that can captivate our black community (both on- and off- campus) to help usher in a paradigm shift. I understand that BUS has its own constitution with rules that are meant to be followed.

But if I had my way I’d do away with the mass meetings, leaving the executive board to show more action than just mere words. With the fast-paced world of cell phones, 18 credit hours, two jobs and other responsibilities to your major – you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone (other than the executive board and its loyal supporters) to dedicate the time to attend a meeting, especially if there doesn’t seem to be a reason to even attend. What can be done to change this?

Since you can’t do away with the meetings, make the content something viable and somewhat more community oriented. Instead of “Are You Authentically Black?” why not have a discussion about the pitfalls of bad credit? Why not shift our focus to preparing ourselves for life after college? What can we all do to enrich one another’s stay here at KSU? How can we appeal to the black communities within the surrounding areas to be a positive influence on those who are not seeking higher education?

In a day where the commander-in-thief — I mean chief – can do whatever he wants, we all, black people especially, need to be prepared for things other than just a midterm exam. Pan-African Studies associate professor Francis Dorsey told me once that “if you don’t know the history of what you speak . then why are you talking?” The history of BUS is one entrenched in strength, power and courage. I believe somewhere it has been lost, taking a backseat to status, recognition and complacency.

The power is within the people and, to play off of BUS’ mantra, “Without ‘U’, we’re just B.S.” To the executive board members of BUS, I am here to say that we need you.

Kevin L. Clark is a sophomore magazine journalism major and a columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected]