Young organizers, activists and allies gathered at the steps of City Hall for a People’s Press Conference to demand the resignation of Mayor Lyda Krewson, Oct. 17. The conference was a direct action event packed with political theater and community building hosted by Sunrise STL and joined by Occupy City Hall STL, STL Reentry Collective […]
Last weekend, I logged onto Facebook to see what was going on. As I studied my newsfeed (which has changed 15 times in two years), some pretty striking statuses came to my attention. They spoke of ignorance and racism, specifically targeting some freshman girl, Claire Ferguson. I saw several different statuses as I scrolled down, and wondered what was going on.
We tend to eat dinner with those who look like us, and we feel inclined to join cultural groups with those who have similar backgrounds. To some, this may understandably bring to mind the term “segregation,” yet I believe the term “identity” is more fitting to the situation at hand.
I had been told that St. Louis was a southern town, one with good and bad connotations and positive and negative stereotypes. I knew, too, that Washington University would be a bubble, secluded from most of these. Wash. U., after all, is full of intelligent students all searching for the same mental stimulation and growth.
Allow me to first clarify some things so that the content of my opinion piece will be received within context: I am black, I am a junior, and I am from Harlem, N.Y., originally born in the South Bronx, New York City. Both areas are predominantly made of people of black, Puerto Rican and/or Dominican descent.
One of my friends asked me to help him put an outfit together for a concert we went to last week (which made me feel special). As we were driving to the venue, he made the comment, albeit jokingly, that we were twins, except I’m white and he’s black, which threw us into a conversation about race perceptions today. I feel in the same way that even if we don’t realize it, here at Wash. U.
As a new resident of St. Louis, it was a pleasure to read up on some of its history in Gail Milissa Grant’s “At the Elbows of My Elders.” This former professor, U.S. Foreign Service officer and Wash. U. alumna, describes her life as the daughter of the late, illustrious civil rights lawyer David W. Grant in segregated 1950s St. Louis.
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