Daily Kent Stater

It’s time to get rid of all racist logos

Dear Editor:

I have been on this campus for five years — 10 whole semesters — and during this time I have witnessed countless voices of ignorant students spitting nonsense on the Forum page. As of now, I am pretty fed up. Now I must speak.

I am so tired of this mascot issue and the blatant racism that it demonstrates. One of the problems that most minorities have with white people is not that they are TRYING to be racist, but for the simple fact that most of them do not care about anyone but themselves. They tell themselves that racism doesn’t exist so they can sleep at night while at the same time perpetuating stereotypes for the sake of sports entertainment.

The Indians’ mascot is racist. Period. It was created during a time when that sort of imagery was commonplace and accepted, but if it had been created in these days, it would never have been allowed. The name alone is an insult. Columbus got lost and now a whole group of people get a name that shows it. It’s as insulting as calling all Asian people Chinese, or calling a Puerto Rican person a Mexican.

But, for the sake of sports, these people get daily reminders that the majority in this country does not care about their culture, nor their history. It isn’t enough that their land was taken from them but now people feel the need to take their pride, also.

A lot of white people are really quick to mention the hardships that all these other cultures experienced, well … so what? That’s beside the issue. Heck let’s change the Fighting Irish logo and get rid of the Aunt Jemima brand if we have to. Just because there are lots of injustices, doesn’t mean we should continue to allow them. Let’s work towards changing them all. But one thing is for sure, accepting the injustice is just as bad as creating the injustice.

Kenan Gabriel

Senior art education major


Racism will not disappear unless whites recognize their role


Dear Editor:

Jeff Schooley is right: Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. certainly had a dream. Like Jeff, I too have dreams of people living in harmony with one another. Unfortunately, I wake up every morning — just as Dr. King did —and open my eyes to the oppression that engulfs the world. I do not suffer from it. Instead, I am part of the small but dominant group of people that penetrates it.

White people created the concept of race, not people of color. It is a system maintained by white people and we, to this day, benefit from the oppression of people of color. Therefore, it is ludicrous for people who share my skin color to ask black people to make it go away — to stop talking about race. We created it, we benefit from it, and it will never disappear unless all white people begin to discuss openly and honestly with one another how we ourselves are complicit in the perpetuation of this system. We, as white people, cannot even begin to talk about racism without looking at ourselves first.

As a white person, I have the privilege not to think about being white. I never have to feel what it is like to be a Mexican confronting la Migra in a U.S. border town; to feel what it is like to be Arab going through security at a U.S. airport; or to feel what it is like to be a black male driving through a white, affluent neighborhood at night. Schooley argues that humanity should look to “a source” for a shared, collective identity. However, the ability to look for points of identity transcending race is rooted in white privilege. As a white person, I can pass through all of those situations mentioned above without being aware that I am white, if I so choose, and that is the greatest white privilege.

The problem of identity is not with people of color — it is with white people who refuse to acknowledge how the rest of the non-white world perceives us. We ask black people to stop clinging to race, but we haven’t rid ourselves of our racial identity precisely because we have never acknowledged ours.

Racism is a system from which white people derive power, security and comfort — and in order for us to maintain and benefit from that system, we have to avoid talking about it. We have to keep our identity a secret from even ourselves.

Instead of turning the words of Dr. King against the very people he sought to liberate, it might be a good idea for white people such as myself who strive to be anti-racist allies to reflect on his message and what it calls on us to do to combat this rotten system from which we benefit so much — not just this month, but during every day of every month of every year until we achieve his dream.

Tim Mayer

Senior applied conflict management major