The voice : Fayetteville State University student press. online resource (None) 2006-current, April 06, 2011, Image 6
6 The Voice, For Students, By Students I March 30, 2011 | www.fsuvoice.com | send news tips to the editor; firstname.lastname@example.org COMMENTARY Model United Nations loses its appeal Voice photo by Alicia Bayat Students at the 22nd Annual Model United Nations Conference work through the afternoon on Saturday, to catch up on a late start. The conference was held at the Holiday Inn Bordeaux, March 17-22. It was hosted by Fayetteville State University and sponsored by the National Geo-Spatial Intelligence Agency. By Alicia Bayat Voice Editor-in-Chief Every year I look forward to participating in the North Carohna Consortium for Inter national and Inter-Cultural Education Model United Nations conference (NCIIE) spon sored by National Geo-Spatial intelligence Agency (NGA).. I look forward to the con nections, and networking, but what I look for ward to most is that late night call that initi ates the “crisis” where students get together to solve that last minute mock world crisis. The debates are passionate, time consuming and exhausting. But you always come out of this feeling accomplished. The Model United Nations is a simulation of the United Nations. It is designed to edu cate students on the intricacies of debate and decision-making at the international level. Students act as delegates of select na tions to help solve international affairs and through diplomatic means. The exercise en gages critical thinking, communication and leadership skills. It is beneficial to understand the process and decision making that goes into being part of the international community. The weekend of March 17-20, FSU stu dents along with other univerities participat ed in the 22nd annual Model United Nations conference. The feel of the whole event was differ ent this year. There was a cloud over the event. With the wave of revolution spreading throughout North Africa and the Middle East you would think there would be a lot for stu dent delegates to discuss and draw from. Instead it was a lackluster with little en ergy. In past conferences you could feel the passionate debates, the reverberations of emotional investment. This seemed more like a whole community going through the mo tions or trying to get through the process. This is not the conference I am accustomed to attending. NGA who usually interviews at these conferences did not whole "any inter views, but was a small presence as usual. I didn’t get the late night call that usually comes with the inevitable crisis. I walked around the hotel fort three hours Saturday looking for delegates to interview and pic tures to take. I found a few stragglers wan dering the halls, but no sign of any life or urgency. In past conferences, early the next day after a crisis people would still be milling about, working on resolution papers in the work room or walking around trying to obtain signatories and create alliances. I remember students laughing, and joking about the long night of debates, but this time there was none of that energy. There was only a dull, quiet emptiness to the whole event. The few students I did find later in the day were usually from one of the other universi ties. The event was plagued with issues, such as lost hotel accomadations, late starts, empty^ conference rooms and missing delegates. The energy was gone. The passion wasn’t there. There was no congregation of student delegates hanging around the restaurant or hallways. These events add to the educational expe rience and understanding of international af fairs. FSU makes an investment in the educa tional process by providing these events. It’s important understand the commitment that comes with participation. The rewards, and experiences that arise from the interaction, research, writing, critical thinking and debate process. For those who stayed and worked hard it was a rewarding night. MLK continued front page revolutions in North Africa and the Middle East and U.S. involvement; Japan’s growing technological nuclear catastrophe; mounting economic disparities across the country as well as the world; or the continuing existence of racial inequities expressed through the so cioeconomic, health, and educational gaps, this question is most pertinent, today. “A true revolution of values will soon look uneasily on the glaring contrast of poverty and wealth. With righteous indignation, it will look at thousands of working people dis placed from their jobs with reduced incomes as a result of automation while the profits of the employers remain intact, and say: ‘This is not just.’ It will look across the oceans and see individual capitalist of the West in vesting huge sums of money in Asia, Afnca and South America, only to take the profits out with no concern for the social betterment of the countries, and say: ‘This is not just.’” These words speak to the heart of modem so cial disparities. In what some have called his most vision ary work, Dr. King began chapter one with “Where Are We” and ended with a 10 page appendix mapping out his suggestions in “Programs and Prospects.” In a chapter titled “Where We Are Going,” Dr. King writes, “In the days to come, orga nized labor will increase its importance... Au tomation is imperceptibly but inexorably pro ducing dislocations, skimming off unskilled labor from the industrial force. The displaced are flowing into proliferating service occupa tions. These enterprises are traditionally un organized and provide low wage scales with longer hours.” “The value in pulling racism out of its ob scurity and stripping it of its rationalizations lies in the confidence that it can be changed. To live with the pretense that racism is a doc trine of a very few is to disarm us in fighting it frontally as scientifically unsound, morally repugnant and socially destructive. The pre scription for the cure rests with the accurate diagnosis of the disease.” Dr. King recog nizes and describes the need for vigilance in rooting out this most caustic condition still afflicting our nation. What might Dr. King say today, about “the Dream?” The answer’s are found in his work published a year prior to his asssassination and four years after the “I have a dream” speech. Looking past the dated terminology as Afiican-American replaces Negro, the en emy is now terrorism instead of communism, his work speaks to today’s challenges. Dr. King made a profound distinction in his dedication of the book, “To the commit ted supporters of the civil rights movement, Negro and white whose steadfastness amid confusions and setbacks gives assurance that brotherhood will be the condition of man, not the dream of man.” “ In 1967, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., iso lated himself from the demands of the civil rights movement, rented a house in Jamaica with no telephone, and labored over his final manuscript. In this prophetic work, which has been unavailable for more than ten years, he lays out his thoughts, plans, and dreams for America’s future, including the need for bet ter jobs, higher wages, decent housing, and quality education. With a universal message of hope that continues to resonate, King de manded an end to global suffering, asserting that humankind—.for the first time—has the resources and technology to eradicate pov erty,” as described by Beacon Publishers. August 28, visitors will be able to attend the unveiling dedication of the “Martin Lu ther King, Jr. National Memorial On the Mall,” in Washington D.C. Between now and then,you would do well to read his work. . If you haven’t read it, pick up a copy and see where Dr. King saw us going then, and, where he sees us today.