Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The Heated Debate- Group 3

The question that started it out was, “How do you think our community should remember and forgive? The question went on, but that’s where we sort of got stuck.
One member first stated that though he felt we should remember we shouldn’t overemphasize it, because most people aren’t racist and it’s a fringe issue. I then said that I didn’t believe that racism is a fringe issue. Another member brought out the statement that forgetting doesn’t bring closure. He then responded that he wasn’t advocating forgetting, but that overemphasizing issues from the past brings up emotions that aren’t necessarily true and that in all honesty they’re always gonna be idiots who perform unspeakable acts. She then responded that racism doesn’t have to be outward it can also be inward. A third student then joined the conversation saying racism is real in the way we interact and in our judgments. He then said how he felt that the government was instituting racist mandates against white people through things like affirmative action and asked whether diversity should be chosen over merit. I then gave the analogy by saying how affirmative action was like helping people to start the race on an equal footing to catch up where the oppressors had had a head start... And he counteracted with, is it fair to steal from the rich? My notes then got a little fuzzy ,but the conversation picked up later with him asking for statistics of discrimination in the mainstream and she then shared how though her mother had been passed over for a job even though she was better qualified simply because she was black. And he counteracted, but it seems now that if you’re a minority and a woman you’re golden, so…… not the majority of people who act in racist ways. What I want is for the best person to get in and the issues aren’t as black and white as we think they are.

Two of us spoke about it later and we both spoke about how we were shaking during the conversation. I was shaking with rage; I was so upset and felt like people’s sufferings had been discounted. Later on in the conversation, I had to keep telling myself not to cry. She on the other hand was shaking because she said she rarely shared her personal stories and she felt like it was discounted and misunderstood.

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