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The Northerner

Racism must be faced, addressed

Katrina Lightbourne

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To the editor,

I would like to issue a rebuttal to the letter to the editor concerning racism.

I was appalled and disheartened at the comments made. Agreed, racism is a very sensitive issue and I would venture to say that it reached NKU long before the incident involving “Ms. African American freshperson” (as Mr. Wanninger condescendingly stated) transpired.

The exploitation of racism is a direct result of media coverage, in this case an article that was relatively unbiased, (which is generally not the case), and personal opinions stemming from personal experiences.

In other words, this incident merely blew racism’s cover on NKU’s campus.

The heart of the issue is that excessive force was used by the Department of Public Safety. Regardless of how threatened the victim (FYI: I refuse to use this term loosely) felt, there is no reason that force of that magnitude should have been used given the variables of this particular situation.

However, that is not the real issue that I am addressing. According to Webster, the definition of racism is “a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race.”

This, by definition, excludes blacks from being able to be racist. Why?

Blacks are the minority and have not (and can not) exemplified the same amounts of racial discrimination that white have and continue to do.

In turn, racial discrimination is what perpetuates an inferiority complex among blacks, despite the complex being authentic or fictitious.

The whole “get over it” notion revealed in Mr. Wanniger’s letter leads me to believe that there is still a problem among some whites in being sensitive to an issue that took approximately 400 years ingrain and will not be resolved overnight.

Yes, it is a fact that blacks have their own prejudices to face but being insensitivite and impatient does not at all help the situation.

Lastly, I would like to address slavery.

It is very true that the Western region was the first to abolish slavery. But, the west was also the first to introduce the dehumanizing enterprise that initiated generations of emotional instability.

Hence, what is going on in Africa today.

I do appreciate the letter issued by Mr. Wanninger because he brings up a valid point.

All people (esp. blacks and whites) need lessons on race relations.

It is imperative that blacks and whites alike bring their issues to the forefront instead of hiding behind the excuse of “I don’t want to hurt anybody’s feelings.”

It is time that we, as NKU, become the trailblazers in finding a realistic solution to racism.

Katrina Lightbourne Senior, pre-nursing

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The Independent Student Newspaper of Northern Kentucky University.
Racism must be faced, addressed