My Response to Pirate Rants Today

The East Carolinian have a section titled “Pirate Rants” in their Opinion section, where students can anonymously comment on whatever they please online to have published the upcoming issue of the paper.

Today, on February 24th, 2015, there have been Pirate Rants on the renaming of the Aycock dorm. Click these following links for more information: http://www.witn.com/home/headlines/CHANCELOR–Aycock-name-should-be-removed-from-ECU-dorm-292096921.html#.VOdoKUDIitI.facebook  http://media2.newsobserver.com/content/media/2010/5/3/ghostsof1898.pdf    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/19/duke-aycock-hall_n_5511580.html

The majority of the rants made me uncomfortable. Not because they were opposed to renaming, but because there was ignorance regarding the Black Student Union, the Board of Trustees, and why there were people for the renaming of the dorm.

These are my responses to some of the rants. This is not to make anyone angry, this only to bring light to the current situation on my campus.

“I am still confused on how the White Student Union Rant caused so much sh** but the BSU [Black Student Union] can push for something that renames a pirates home and people celebrate.”

The White Student Union Rant last semester was because East Carolina University is a predominantly white university. Because White people are the majority, that is why it was offensive. Maybe the person who wrote that rant did feel underrepresented as a White individual, and I am sorry if he or she felt that way. However, a White student is granted more opportunities at ECU and in other places in this country more than people of color. For example, when minority organizations ask for funding from SGA (Student Government Association), the first thing SGA asks is whether or not they have asked for funding from the Ledonia Wright Cultural Center. Majority organizations are not asked this question. Although affirmative action has been in effect for quite a while, a White person is still more likely to get a job than a person of color. The majority of the staff, the Board of Trustees, and even SGA are White. Although it is growing, there is still not enough representation for minorities on our campus, and other places off campus. The Black Student Union, other minority organizations, and members of the majority regardless of which organization they are in,  have been standing up for the renaming because it is a step in moving forward. It is a step for minorities to feel welcome in their dorms and throughout the college campus.

“Is it possible for students of other races to join the BSU? If not I don’t think they should be allowed on campus.”

Yes! Of course students of other races can join the BSU! Students of other races can join the Student Association for Latino Spanish Affairs (SALSA)! Straight students can be a part of the GLBTSU (Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender Student Union), hearing students can join Silent Pirates, the list goes on and on! In my experience, I am not speaking on behalf of all students of color, cultural organizations have been more accepting of other people, including White students. That is because there is excitement in getting to know people who want to truly get to know you after experiences of rejection and being ignored. In my experience in majority organizations, I felt the need to change my way of thinking and change my mannerisms in order to be accepted, in order to avoid being a token, if you will. I have a tendency to be aware of whether or not certain mannerisms of mine are “too black” or “not black enough” regardless of who I am with, whereas most people of Caucasian descent do not have to worry about their mannerisms or their color until they are in a room where they are the minority.

“I’m proud of ECU’s history, so I erased the uncomfortable parts–Everyone who was for the renaming of Aycock.” “The Board of Trustees have no backbone.”

The Board of Trustees made an effective compromise on behalf of all ECU students. They did not just make the decision to rename the dorm, they also made the decision to represent Aycock and his contributions inside Heritage Hall, along with other contributors of the school. They do have backbone, and no one is erasing parts of history here.

I hope my statements have been taken into account. Thank you for taking the time to read them.

Advertisements

Short Story/Flash Fiction: Guy Walks into a Bar

So a guy walks into a half empty bar, and he snickers at me. Looking all smug, ruining the only chill I had tonight in this space. Not too busy, but not a complete ghost town. Respectable people in corners talking at a normal voice level about politics and art sitting on wobbly wooden chairs at scratched, wooden tables, and he just rolls up in here with a few “buddies,” I presume, as if this were a sports bar! I hate guys like that.

The guys that brought me to my knees crawling and reaching around a dirty tiled floor for strayed, wide-open books and poetry journals as he smirked and chuckled at me. My horn-rimmed glasses weren’t a symbol of intelligence in high school; they were a symbol of my poor choices in shields against these kind of people that roamed throughout high school.

I twiddle with my mechanical pencil as if I’m twirling a baton for a small, yet focused, marching band. With each pat it makes on my thumb, almost to the beat of a moody type of song playing, and then my notebook paper, I’m trying to beat away any past thoughts of teenage angst in my writing. I’ll be twenty-two soon, it has to. I wish it were the cider giving me the headaches instead of the writer’s block.

“Freakin’ nerd,” he said, walking down the hall in satanic triumph.

The frat-faced guy today releases a monstrous belch as I take another sip of my drink. Dribbles plop on my face and shirt imminently.

Was it because of my shirt? Was it because of my glasses? The guidance counselor said it was probably because of jealousy. What did his stupid pretty face have to be jealous about? Why did God decide to bless him with the charm of angels for the faculty and sporty kids and charm of demons for the science and art kids? She also mentioned possible personal problems at home. Like what? Boo hoo, it’s so hard to be pretty and get away with stupid stuff?

“You all right over there?” the guy asks, trying to swallow his last few snickers.

I take the counselor’s advice to breathe, and shout “Yeah. I’m fine. Thanks.”

Another Different Perspective

It’s all about crying, especially when you don’t want to, but need to. It’s about the removal of weight from your chest you didn’t realize was there. It’s about realizing that in a dark corner, and drowning in its darkness until you’re pulled out. It’s about throwing punches very few can see you throw, because to them you are invisible, but you’re not. You’re really not but that mean force intoxicates you over and over again to make you believe that you are not worth it. It’s about receiving revelation for why you are worth it. you inherently crave brokenness, because how can you get rid of something from the beginning? It’s about things never going to plan; your choices aren’t always enough, others’ choices aren’t always enough, but you know of that one who is just that: enough, and sees your being as that way regardless of your choices. It’s about being brought out of that drunken frenzy and seeking that light outside of the corner. It’s about relinquishing the demons from your chest; you thought they would never leave but they did! Sure, they’ll come back, but you know that this time they won’t stay for long. It’s about believing in that promise that rings true as you sober up.

It’s all about how you can continue this list as long as you want to. It’s about questioning whether you want to continue or not. It’s about how it is okay to ask questions to get angry, get joyous, get human. Yes, human. Created by the one and only who sees you and your worth! One who sees your blood crusted razors, your begging hands, your struggles, your punches at the wall, your hiding in little to uncomfortable sheets, your lack of a home, whatever a “home” is to you. It’s about receiving redemption out of it all, making you want to continue getting up.

Stream of Consciousness 2

Another experiment. In my Writing for Solo Performance class, we just wrote the first things we came up with in order to later write a poem.

My earth needs more spark, and cursive, and God, and sharpened pencils, and watches, and kisses, and falls. Fall for me. On the fall. Scribble scribble scribble what can I get typical reasonable no punctuation no structure no fear but there is fear what yes how because why? Construct. Yellow construct covered in old cheese and technicolor sprinkles, reruns of Girlfriends, Friends, Modern Family, comma splices, synonyms, paper, paper people in paper towns. Jesus, poetry, sports, liking art more than sports and being unfit because of it. Consciousness. Unconsciousness. Love. So vague, yet so meaningful. No erasing no TV no YouTube mispelling grammar mistakes no plot graphs or lines or other charts. Nonsense. Madness. Release. How? Freedom ain’t always free. Rings. Purity rings. My three rings comfy shoes strangling feet to be wanted and held during the day since they’re always tossed to the side at night. Clicking, ticking, screaming, Jesus, Holy Spirit, God, hands, eyes, hair. What the heck is good hair?! I don’t want to stop. Tell me to stop.

Below is the poem that came out of the chaos above I titled “My Three Rings”:

Two on my right and one on my left.

I have my own holy trinity to prepare me daily.

I have tan lines on display that can be read

Between the lines of my past and present through

Virginity, class, and mood.

They hug so tight to my fingers

During the day.

Are they hurt when they’re tossed upon a dresser

Or a desk at night?

Do they understand that I don’t want them

Trapped in screaming sheets

Or reruns of the storm in my head

That makes me toss and turn?

They make my mattress rumble in either misery,

Exhaustion, or anticipation.