By BreAnn McCord
Recently on campus, many of you have noticed the signs displaying the n-word. But many of you have not because they were taken down almost immediately. Many of you are outraged, confused, and upset while others are excited and intrigued. We understand that this has caused a commotion on campus and many have questions that need to be answered. First let me say that this was not done to upset anybody directly. We are not attacking anybody and there was a purpose to this. The fine print read: BTYB: CONCERNED STUDENTS FOR POLICY CHANGE. This was something that we hoped people would understand and hopefully after reading this many of you will.
So why use the n-word and not a different derogatory term? This is a word that has affected some of the people involved in the poster campaign personally. We wanted something that would add to the shock value and it worked. We are not disregarding any other hate speech or derogatory terms. This was simply the word we chose. In the narratives we posted, we did acknowledge other forms of discrimination based on gender, sexual orientation, and faith. The aim of the policy change is to address all forms of discrimination so be aware that we are not making this solely a “black issue.”
Many of you have never heard this word used before on this campus and simply think it does not happen. This does not mean that it does not happen. In fact, it happened about a month ago at a party and caused a huge problem among some people involved. Just because you do not hear it does not eliminate the problem. Many of us face discrimination in various ways, some directly and some not. But this campus has an issue that must be faced by everybody. Some of you felt personally attacked and believe that the posters created a “toxic environment” on campus. If I may be frank for a moment, I just want to say that I don’t care that people feel personally attacked. We live in a society where we must walk around on eggshells to make certain people feel “comfortable.” This was something to put people outside of their comfort zones. I am sorry if I sound insensitive, but I really do not care.
Put yourselves in the position of a person who has been discriminated against on this campus and realize that this actually does happen to people and it is a problem. There are so many of you who claim to be colorblind and open-minded, yet when discrimination does happen here, nobody steps forward and owns it. Where was this outrage when these words were actually said to someone’s face? We used the n-word to get people angry because nothing else has worked. We wanted people to be upset and outraged. We brought this issue forward in an offensive manner because we knew that time and time again this issue as failed to gain any sort of validity among students, faculty and administration. Over the course of several hours we had the campus talking and met with administrators to discuss the situation. We acknowledge your discomfort and your concern, but we will not apologize for our actions.