When it comes to the topic of race, there are two chief perspectives: one is from the eyes of
someone who is a minority, and the view from someone who isn’t. Â Yourself, friends, colleagues, could be of any race or could be from anywhere in the world and, unfortunately, it affects how we can thrive.
On campus, we have a diverse group of students that mostly accept each other for who they are, regardless of race. It may not be something we want to think about, but people have to be aware of the fact that there will always be people who will discriminate against you. We try to be colorblind here at URI and I notice all around me people accepting others for who they are, but that won’t always be the case, and although it may not be something we want to think about, it’s something we have to keep in mind.
While I’ve noticed around campus people accept others, there will always be a few bad apples in a group. There are students here who will inevitably be discriminated against in competitions for getting jobs, for making friends, for trying to seek assistance from our on-campus help or for any other endeavor that our students may choose to participate in.
I know many people who refuse to believe that white privilege exists, but the fact of the matter is that it does. People who are white are treated differently than those of a minority race. They’re treated as everyone should be treated, treated as regular human beings who are no different from anyone else. A basic right we all deserve but unfortunately aren’t always given.
Every individual is unique and we need to respect that fact and we need to recognize that. They’re people just like anyone else and deserve to be treated as such. I’ve met people on campus who admitted that since coming to campus they have become truly colorblind and they didn’t realize it until they saw how students on campus truly treat everyone as equals. It’s changes in people like this that makes URI such a great community, but there is still much work to be done.
It’s deplorable to even have to bring to volition the case that people are treated differently for
their skin color, but in the world, everything is not always so kind. From personal experience, I’ve been with friends out in the streets and have had people give them glares or move away from them as they walked by. It was audacious to watch and it’s something no one should be subject to for something as trivial as what they look like. It’s acts like these that are what keep us from progressing as people and as a community. Here on campus, life is different from that of a town. We’re much more accepting of others here at URI and I know we’ve all seen it firsthand.
People here aren’t as brutish as they are in the outside world, but we can be the voice of reason to others and help bring about change in the world. When people come to URI, there is an overwhelming acceptance for everyone, students helping other students and treating them as equals instead of treating them as vagrants. Unfortunately there is not enough of this treatment outside our community of peers.
So when we leave our campus, we have the opportunity and a responsibility to spread what we practice here and help others to see how easy it is to just accept people for who they are and to stop discrimination of any kind.