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Are You Kidding? White Student Unions?

Okay. I’m about to brief you on some real bullshit.

Recently White Student Unions have been appearing all over the nation. One of the first seemed to have originated in MIzzou. As you may know Mizzou and Yale have had a lot of racial tensions within their universities recently. There even have been a multitude of death threats on yik yak, an anonymous social media app, towards black individuals saying that if they came to campus they would be murdered.

That’s the foundation of when and how this has started, but this new “trend” of starting White Student Unions is sweeping the nation. They continue to formulate at different schools across America. They have been formed at New York University, University of California – Berkeley, even here at James Madison University, and that is only listing a few.

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Screenshot by EternallyFeminist

 

Disgusted. I am disgusted.

Isn’t it odd that all of these Facebook pages representing the most privileged individuals of society start originating after all the racist aftermath that went down in both Yale and Mizzou? People are claiming they are trolls and say to pay no mind to them. But this is disgraceful, and is not something we can simply ignore.

The basis of what the White Student Unions are said to stand for on the different Facebook groups include things such as “Spreading our European culture” and providing “a safe place for white individuals and their allies”. This is basically mocking the marginalization and the unique struggle that individuals of color face at college campuses.

The saddest part is that some people don’t understand why it’s not okay! White people argue that if individuals of color or individuals a part of a different cultural background different than the norm get a union then why don’t they. There was a 100 comment thread where people were going back and forth on their opinions on the matter.

I’m sorry you don’t get an opinion.

It’s not okay because if you are white you are at the most privileged place in American society. For example JMU is 80% white. We do not need a union to support ourselves. We don’t need a union to provide a safe space. We don’t need a union to express our culture.

I’m so tired of every person of privilege getting on their whiny soap box and complaining about the fact that individuals a part of marginalized groups get to have their “group”. Their communities were necessary to form in the first place due to the institutionalized oppression that still exists today. I’m sorry, but stop acting like you need to be a special snowflake. You are privileged. Also. Before you bitch and moan this is coming from a cisgender white guy. I just recognize when it’s time to sit down and shut up and stop making it about yourself. Not everything that goes on in the world needs to include you. Some things just simply do not.

Sorry for the ranting, but it is a necessary step in the process of understanding that we need to respect that individuals are at different places in society, and they need the communities that do exist to thrive in the stratified society that does still exist.

 

3 Responses to “Are You Kidding? White Student Unions?”

  1. theelephantintharoom

    I love this post. When I first saw JMU’s White Student Union FB page show up I thought it was literally a joke because of many of the reasons you just stated (they simply don’t need a “safe space”- PWI’s are already safe spaces for them, etc.) Thanks for writing this! Love the passion in your voice.

    Reply
  2. SassyYazzy

    Very well said! I agree completely, and I was just as disgusting as you are by the various Facebook pages that have been popping up. My favorite part of this post was when you said “we need to respect that individuals are at different places in society, and they need the communities that do exist to thrive in the stratified society that does still exist.” It was definitely a different perspective on the issue that I haven’t heard worded in this way.

    I wanted to ask- what do you think about the way JMU handled the Facebook page with the statement they made? I don’t remember if this is something we talked about in class, but I wanted to hear your opinion on it. I thought they did a good job of condoning it while still recognizing it as an unfortunate form of free speech.

    Reply
    • FlyAwayWithMe

      I think they did the best they could with what they had to work for the most part. They said it wasn’t affiliated with the school, which it simply wasn’t and doesn’t support their overall mission.
      I just don’t like the fact that I feel like JMU administration also seems to be walking on egg shells when addressing obviously wrong things on our campus. They kind of have to do in a way due to some idiots actually seeing the “positives” of a WSU, but it isn’t something I really respect.

      Reply

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