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No 40 Acres, No Mule and No BCC
The University will not be gelling a frec-sianding. Black Cultural
Center anytime soon. Maybe it would be helpful to examine the
opponents of this idea and the reasons behind their resistance:
The Unlnfomied Set
Some students oppose a BCC of any kind, because they think it would
be the exclusive domain of black people. One student, enrolled in a black
politics class last semester, admitted she would feel intimidated if she
entered the current BCC, a liny portion of the Student Union. But the
BCC is designed to be a learning center for everyone interested in
expanding their knowledge of the black race. In this regard, it is no
different from classes in Afro-American or women’s studies. Sure, you
can expect to see a higher percentage of blacks in an AFAM class or the
BCC and a larger number of women in a women’s studies course, but
why should the prospect of being a temporary minority discourage
people from seeking positive education?
The Pseudo-Multiculturalist Faction
- These students, embodied by student body presidential candidate
John Moody, say a multicultural centcr is what the campus needs.
Really, most people espousing this idea are more concerned with
undermining the effort to gain an independent BCC than they arc with a
center offering a diverse cultural perspective. They are like members of
Congress, who defeat pieces of legislation by attaching to them an array
of other (and often mutated) issues. These legislative “riders,”
ostensibly put there to make the bill acceptable to a greater number of
people, in effect make the bill unacceptable to everyone. No significant
movement on behalf of a multicultural centcr has been implemented by
any other campus miiHxity. On the other hand, black students have
agitated fora free-standing BCC 14 years. Curiously, only whites have
mentioned a multicultural center to me.
Tli« Apathetic Majority
Real culpability for the unrealized dream of an independent BCC lies
with the rest of us who have not joined the struggle. This includes
blacks, whites and the University. Even attempts to build a BCC with
private contributions, and this is the only way we arc going to sec one
here at UNC-Chapel Hill, are hindered by adminisu-ators and a student
body whose support for the idea has been tepid at best. Of course, the
question arises whether the lack of support can be attributed to apalhy or
opposition, and a student poll on the question might be in order.
They are present in all the categories mentioned above. This is the
quietest group, but we know they are there.
Myron B. Pitts
Inside Black Ink^
Tuesday, February 4,1992
A BLACKOUT OF BLACK FILMS
Except for the Chelsea, movie theaters in Chapel Hill rarely showcase the cinematic
contributions of black directors and writers. Owners and operators of local theaters explain
why. Page 4.
THE MOVEMENT GATHERS MOMENTUM
Marsha Tinnen, leader of the University’s discontented housekeepers, talks to the Ink about
the progress she and her colleagues have made. Page 3.
DON’T BELIEVE THE HYPE
As Media Issues columnist Melchee Tate tells us, television is not always accurate in its
portrayal of African Americans. Page 3.
•The Black Student Movement has a brief message of unity for all of us. Page 6.
•Cassandra Caldwell, latest recipient of the annual Martin Luther King scholarship, says some
blacks have forgotten the dream. Page 6.
THE INDUSTRIOUS PROFESSOR
He makes woodcrafts in his home. He writes poetry. His travels have taken him to, among
other places, Maryland, the Virgin Islands, Conneticut and Michigan. By the way, English
professor J. Lee Greene has also taught at the University for 16 years. Page 7.
WE BROUGHT IT ON OURSELVES
Wonderboy laments the boring gifts he receives during the holidays. Page 8.
"The essence of freedom is understanding"
Editor: Myron B. Pios
Associate Editor: Corey Brown
Photography Editor: Kelly Greene News Editor: Rolanda C. Bumey
Opinion Page Exlitor: Jacqueline Charles Business Editor: Kevin McNair
On-Campus EUllton Lee Richardson
StafT: Tiffany Ashhurst, Natalie Baucum, Michacl Bowden, Keisha Brown,
Delanoey Bermett, Jennifer O. Ferguson, Scott Johnson, Felts Lewis, John T.
McCann, Chandra McLean. TJ. StaiKil, Tonika M. Tillman, Sharilyn Seale,
Stefan Tyson, Natarsha Witherspoon
About the Cover
The films of directors like Spike Lee have no “juice” with Chapel Hill movie theaters. The
Varsity, Ram and Plaza I-III rarely play the works of black writers and directors. A
spokeswoman for the Plaza said their theater prefers intellectual films over ones that
involve “a bunch of people shooting each other.” Page 4.
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