North Carolina Newspapers

SEPTEMBER 16, 1992
^ng BCC Kicks Into High Gear
The Shot Heard Round the World: Students Bum Rush
Hardin's House
By Tuere Randall
j Ink Staff Writer
What happened on the night of
ptember 3, 1992 was magical.
:iure this: on this campus about
0 Nubian princes and princesses
;re transformed into African gods
d goddesses as we marched into
; iiight to “ The Pit” and then to
lancellor Hardin’s house to
mand our free-standing Black
iliural Center. And though our
ices rang loudly and clearly in the
ickness of the night, we received
\ citations; and there were no
rests. Even still, we were heard. We
|ide it very clear that we would no
nger sit back and allow the
. ematic deprivation of African-
piericans that has become the
j acy of this campus. It pleases me
en more because this is exactly
1 kind of suppcHt I wanted to see
are frequently last year when I
■ote to you, my brothers and
iiers, of our apathetic nature. It
came apparent that those students
10 came to that event witnessed
lat was perhaps the birth of what
IS the mass awakening of African-
nerican consciousness on this
mpus, because what followed
factly a week later was the most
ihilaiBting moment of my college
ireer.What looked like about one
ousand students marched from
rhe Pit” to the South Building led
members of the Coalition to
liver to Chancellor Hardin an
imatum: by Friday, Novembo"
1992, if he does not comply
ith the wish for a Black Cultural
:nter, we will have no other choice
It to take direct action. The sheer
|nll of supporting each other was
tautiful and emotionally stirring.
(q are making history together,
ishing forward together, am
)pefully we will nev» turn back to
e cluelessness and apathy that hac
cmingly become characteristic or
rican-American students here. It
never too late to join the struggle,
it we do not have the time or
ience for half-steppin*. So come
brrea or just don’t come.
I I want you to realize this; if a
iee-standing B.C.C. is what we
'ant, need and deserve, we must
\W. I ■ t a ■ . ^
llrst understand WHY we want,
need and ultimately will have one. I
was reading through the
Chancellor’s letter
to the freshmen,
where he lauds
Carolina and prides
this University on
Ijeing “a place
where intelligent
and inquisitive
students with varied
talents and interests,
different cultural
jackgrounds, and
diverse dreams and
aspirations can
come together to
learn and to grow.”
So being the
intelligent and
inquisitive students
that we are, we ask
why is it that this
administration is so
adamant about denying us this
building which will commemorate
the life of Sonja Haynes Stone, who
fought for the recognition of varied
talents and contributions made by
diffCTCTt people (e^jecially African-
Americans), so that pec^le of any
cultural background with their
diverse dreams and aspirations can
come together to learn and grow.
We are the people who gave birth to
civilization (thus the concept of a
higher institute of learning), it is my
belief (and I am
siffe many of you
share this
sentiment) that
college is the
cultural crossroads
of education. There
is no better place to
celebrate the
culture and heritage
of others than at
college, especially
at a University as
large as ours. We
owe it to ourselves
to love OUR heritage and to teach
others how they have benefitted and
reaped the rewards of our
contributions. We have that
responsibility and duty to humanity
because for years it has so
conveniently left our histwy out of
(his-story) books. Let us ask
ourselves this; when we go to our
friends’ houses, do they not take us
I Hitchcock Speaks As BAG Members Look On %
in and show us photo albums? Do
they not tell and teach us things
about how their family is special
and unique? Would we not do those
same things with a B.C.C.? T.D.
McNeil, the woman who first
sparked the first protest march, said
something that struck me: “An
obstacle is something you see when
you take your focus off your goal.”
We cannot afford to be unfocused
because there are too many people.
They will call us separatists and
Students Gather
probably worse things behind our
backs because we will not settle for
a multicultural center. We know we
are not separatists because we
recognize separatism all too well.
Separatists are what they were the
160 years (approximately) before
they let the first Black student auend
this university. By instating a Black
Cultural Center, we would be
integration because
integration can only
occur if smaller
ethnic groups can
have an equal
interaction and
exchange of ideas,
culture and
knowledge with the
majority. Why not a
multicultural center?
S imply because other
people of color have
made significant
contributions to the
world and it would be
unfair to restrict the
amount of space they
may want and need to
reflect themselves.
Would the Tri-Delts
share a house with the Tri-Sigs? I
THINK NOT! We are a loving and
forgiving people. How else could
we tolerate a campus that has several
of its buildings named after
klansmen— a point so eloquently
made by April Turner at the “speak-
out” Do you think that Jews would
tolerate a Hitler Hall, or study in a
Goebbels Library? HELL NO! I
regret that more people do not see
that this should indeed be a multi
racial effort I am sorry that some
White people
who came to the
speak-out felt
targeted by some
of the remarks
made or that they
may be the brunt
of 400 years of
frustration. To
you I say this:
this is not about
you as an
individual, this
struggle is larger
than that. You
could not undo, nor do we hold you
responsible for the centuries of
victimization perpetuated by the
Caucasian race against people of
color in the diaspora. But you can
do your part; spread the word and
encourage others to come out and
make yourselves known to
Chancellor Hardin who mistakenly
sees this struggle as a “Black Thing.”
Besides, it is very human to feel
emotions like frustration or even
hatred for the injustice that is
methodically dealt to us by the
“powers that be” at this university.
These emotions fuel our potential
energy, and in order to turn that
potential energy into kinetic energy,
we must have unity among
ourselves. Chris Miller of Alpha
Phi Alpha spoke of the brotherhood
and sisterhood that he wishes would
exist between all Greeks. Reggie
O’Rourke of Kappa Alpha Psi,
responding to this pledged his
willingness to put aside traditional
rivalries and differences. It was
amazing that night to see the unity
of which they spoke come to life
when we left the Pit. Like disciples
of Jesus, we went to spread the
“Good News” and when we met
back in the Pit and watched our
numbers quadruple, the unity
materialized. And again I watched
it become solid and concrete as I
looked down from inside the South
Building and saw the ocean of black
fists held high, staunchly, fervently
demanding a BCC. There is strength
in numbers my brothers and sisters,
enough strength to unite us into one
voice that this administration can
not ignore. The freshmen should be
commended because they were a
great presence at the march on
September 3rd. My heartfelt thanks
and appreciation goes out to you
for believing in this cause which is
so new to you.
“The die has been cast.” We can
only go forward now, and now we
have so many intelligent, gifted and
articulate leaders who are more
willing to show us the way. We
have only to feel it in our hearts and
be involved. Come to the BSM
meetings. Support BAC. Work
through the different organizations
and the various committees. Come
to the planned events. I offer you:
erase all of the evils of racism and
ignorance on this campus. Let us
bask in the beauty of being black.
lack Ink

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