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Unheard: The Voices of the Oppressed

On the morning of January 23rd, 2017, Oklahoma State Students protest outside the offices of President Burns Hargis about the current blackface incidents on campus.

The most recent incident includes the OkState student named Kandice Burgess,

Where Sunday night she posted a photo on her snap chat titling it ” When he says he only likes black girls”.

 

Throughout the week, students have been protesting within the public spaces of the university, to address the situation of blackface, but to also address the issues of discrimination of all minorities, which has been a prevalent issue on the campus in Stillwater.

Male Initiative, a prevalent minority group on the campus of OSU, are the ones whom kicked started this whole movement. Kahlil B. Martin and Kevin Hayes, whom serve as the President and Vice-President of this organization, gathered the African-American community together to kick start the movement named #CantFakeMelanin, which in turn has spurred the previous protests and events on campus.

The question at hand is, what is the university willing to do to improve the diversity and inclusion relations between all races on the campus of Oklahoma State University. Are they going to continue to allow non-minority students to be uneducated about the minority that is on their campus, or are they going to include programs and resources that allow everyone to respect each other. Moving forward the big issue is are they going to continue to allow the voice of the minority go unheard while they continue to pay their way to an education here at Oklahoma State University.

It seems that this has become ridiculous, that these issues continue to happen on our campus, and I myself have decided to take a stand along with the problems. With being an African-American female on this campus, these and more issues continue to deeply affect myself, and am no longer complacent with receiving a brief email, that is suppose to make me feel like I am still safe within my own campus. I ask you today to stand with us, and better understand how to interact with different minorities within our campus. To understand is not only to protest, but also to ask questions, to attend cultural events, and immerse you into other people realties.

” People have to be more aware of what’s wrong and what’s right. It is 2017 and people have to be more educated on the issues at hand. I felt that it was my job, to educate the campus, and spread love and unity. That’s why Male Initiative is doing this, to bring love, unity, and peace back to the community. We just want to bring change. It’s all love.”

– Kahlil B. Martin, President of Male Initiative

” I think this weeks events have truly strengthened the community. Many students have felt alone on this campus, and now they feel support from each other. This week we have shown, not only the rest of OSU, but each other that together we can rise above all adversity and we will overcome injustice and insensitivity. I want all my peers to know that just because they are not continuously in the limelight, doesn’t mean that they don’t matter.” 

– Tianna Carter, Senior

” This week has been a difficult one, but also a progressive one. The events that took place are nothing new to us, and each time it effects us deeply. However, we are a resilient people and we continue to come together as one to bring people a united front to the injustice that we face against our skin. Although we often feel that we are alone in this world, we will always have each other at the end of the day.”

– Kevin Hayes , Vice-President of Male Initiative

 

For more information on diversity awarness or how you can get involved, please seek out the respective social media accounts:

Male Initiative: @OKSTATEMI

African-American Asscioation: @OSU_Afro_Am

NAACP: @okstatenaacp

Minority Women’s Asscioation: @MWA_OSU

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Jasmine Fain

OK State '19

  Is a Senior at the BRIGHTEST campus in the nation Oklahoma State University. She is a Professional Writing major with a Minor in Linguistics. Check out her articles each week to keep up to date on the many fun things that OSU has to offer. In your spare time also check out her blog LIVINGWITHJ to catch a preview of her life! 
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