In the weeks following Martin Luther King week, the discussion of racism was prevalent on campus, provoking The Defender to ask students, faculty, and staff of their view racism on campus. We interviewed a diverse number of people, ranging from all backgrounds, ethnicities, and age, asking them one question: Do you believe racism exists on St. Michael’s college campus?
“Racism is rampant in America, and St. Michael’s is no exception. There were incidents after the 2016 election where a student of color had ‘Trump’ sprayed in shaving cream outside of her door, clearly trying to make her feel unwelcome, like she had done something incorrectly, or against the status quo. I also did a lot of reading on a lot of different micro-aggressions, which is a very real form of racism, and one that I hear very much on this campus. One of my friends was an RA, and he was telling me that when he was doing rounds one night, a white student was ripping ‘Black Lives Matter’ signs off of doors,” — D McPhe ‘19
“Racism doesn’t really exist on St. Michael’s campus, but the words they use in certain aspects does exist. For example, when they talk to everybody it’s normally like everybody is equal, but when they talk about immigrants in certain ways, it’s applied in a racist way,”– Juane Lopez ‘22.
“Well, I am sure it does exist. I personally have not seen any examples or evidence of it, but I think both the students, faculty, and staff can become a little more educated about what racism is. Sometimes people don’t know what racism is, and as a result, might participate in conversation, or crack a joke, or show something on social media that could be considered racism,” –Mahmoud Arani, Chair of the Linguistics Department
“It’s hard to say. I think most students are fine, and they aren’t racist, but I’m not sure. But, I hear from some of my friends that maybe they receive some discrimination.”–Giacheng Wang ‘19.
“Of course [racism exists on campus]. Last year there were a number of incidents, like the ‘Black Lives Matter’ flag was reported multiple times as a hate speech. It’s like, no, that’s not what it means. The fact that somebody was not willing to give it any second thought – they didn’t look it up, they didn’t even try to invest themselves on ‘what does this mean’ before they just condemned it, they just straight up condemned it.”–Marlon Hyde ‘21.