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We shouldn’t let race cloud our vision

 Recently, it has been brought to our attention that some people have an issue with our coverage, and think we are unequal in our coverage of racial groups on campus.
 As an example, we did not have coverage of Avraye Henry winning Homecoming Queen, and a comment suggested that we should have covered the crowning because she was the first African-American Homecoming Queen since 2004.
 Saying that we should give her more coverage on winning the award because of her race in itself suggests a form of racism. We would be treating her differently due to her race. We should have run her photo because she won Homecoming Queen, not because she was an African-American Homecoming Queen.
We treat every student as a member of the Valdosta State University community, when it came to not covering Homecoming Queen it was completely unintentional.
  When the staff puts the paper together we are always focused on covering more immediate news that the student body may know. 
 Our first priority as journalists is to report the truth of news that is happening on campus and that is what we do.   
 At VSU, every student is treated on the same level with the work they accomplish in classes. In fact it is required by law. We hold ourselves to that same requirement.We choose what stories to run based on newsworthiness not by any other standards.
 Not to say racism does not exist, of course. It does. It always will. But, the main reason it does occur is due to ignorance.
 Prejudice stems from people assuming that one aspect of a person defines that person or a group of people. To think that a person’s skin color, sexuality, religion or gender is a full representation of that person is a silly opinion that is born out of ignorance and, sadly, leads to people acting on that misconception.
 The great thing about being human is that we are complicated. We are a culmination of our interests, backgrounds, experiences and ambitions. College is a result of that, and is the definitive place where people are able to grow, become more educated, discover their place in the world, and ultimately decide how they want to impact the world once they graduate with whatever type of degree their hard work went into.
 The point is that in a place like Valdosta State, where education, is the main goal we need to stop dwelling on the issues of the past. We are the generation that has the power to shape the future of the world and to do that we need to progress.
  To achieve progression we need to accept who each person is and concentrate on the new social challenges. To help with acceptance of everyone, focus on the positive of each person.
  If you continuously look for the negative you are going to find it, nobody is perfect. There is always good and bad in everything. People shouldn’t focus one aspect of a person, be more positive and ultimately work together. Coexistence is possible.

This editorial was written by Molly Duett (mkduett@valdosta.edu) and it expresses the opinion of the entire editorial staff.

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2 comments

  1. The Spectator was wrong for not having an article about the Homecoming Queen. However, it is not racist to post a article and picture of crime happening on campus. It is not The Spectator’s fault that the crime was committed by African-Americans. As the school newspaper it is their job to report campus news, and with the exception of the exclusion of a Homecoming Queen article, they have done just that. Racism is defined as racial prejudice or discrimination. Racism spreads among all races. There will be a racism problem for as long as we continue to run to it as a cause for our problems. I am an American because I was born in America, raised in America, and will die in America. People should get rid of the dash and everything preceding it and come together as the Americans we are.

  2. I don’t believe the Spectator gets what students are upset about. We don’t want more coverage for Avraye because she’s black, we want coverage period! In your article it says” We should have run her photo because she won Homecoming Queen, not because she was an African-American Homecoming Queen.” Well my question is since you said this, Why didn’t you?. I did a little research in the archives and for the last 5 years on the front page of your paper on the issue after homecoming is our smiling happy queen. Now 2010 rolls around and there is not even a mention of it. Now what differs from the last 5 queens and our current…….we wont point out the obvious. How is it that this news was important every year except the year its a African-American? You don’t think that looks suspicious in the least? All we want is to see some positive images of blacks on campus instead of seeing black students in trouble with the police or mugshots on the front page. Show some black organizations and black students doing community service, raising money for charities, and excelling in the classroom. We are an important part of this campus and we just want to have equal representation in our student newspaper.

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