Black History Month brings up diversity issues on campus

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The Black Student Union, BSU, is taking control of February this semester to show campus various aspects of Black History Month.

BSU had a l ready started a series of events to give students and faculty an extensive education on what makes black history, what it is and plans to continue that programming through the month.

Black History Month events began Feb. 8 with a Racial Profiling program, which discussed the history of the War on Drugs and how it started off targeting various minority groups. The club continued educational discussion by bringing up police brutality.

This was followed by their soul food dinner at Feb 10 in the Burlingham lounge.

“(We wanted to) give the sense of the tradition of the southern culture how we were raised with the different foods that we have, and be able to give the hospitality that you usually see from the black community,” senior member Patrice Fuller said.

Feb. 9 was the starting day of the BSU’s movie series, which connects to the display that is currently up in the


“The movie series will be happening every Thursday starting the 11th,” Fuller said. “We end up picking films

from our library exhibit we have, which is black authors that have written books that have been turned into movies.”

These movies include Think Like a Man, The Pursuit of Happiness and Race, which is an upcoming biographical sports film that focuses on the life of Jesse Owens and his struggles

entering the Olympics.

BSU is eager to open up the conversation about race and break the inevitable discomfort that comes with it.

“When you feel guilty, that’s when you need to really think about what you’re doing to society,” Fuller said. “What are some things that are happening? Are you a part of the problem, are you trying to change it?”

Fuller continued to give credit to the learning process and to being uncomfortable with privilege.

“It’s good to b e uncomfortable in situations, because that’s a learning process. That’s the only way

you’re going to get your hands dirty and being able to change something about yourself, as well as the people

around you.”

Fuller iterated that, while BSU is celebrating Black History Month and speaks specifically to issues the Af r i c an American community faces, it does not exclude any minority.

According to President Lesley Hallick’s university address, only 34 students out of the 1,943 students are

African American. This equates to less than two percent of the student population at Pacific.

Members of the BSU understand that for many cultural groups that are similarly underrepresented,

the talk on racial inequality can come with a lot of hesitation.

“More diversity ultimately leads to more peace more creativity, and everybody gets a taste of everybody’s culture and less hate,” junior and Head of Communications and Marketing Michael Ashley said.

To maintain the momentum they have built, BSU is currently planning different events to take place outside of Black History Month

“We’re also working on a conference where we’re going to have different speakers come, and do different workshops, and working on that to have that later in March,” Ashley said.

Fuller said the BSU is optimistic about how the remainders of this year ’s events are going to turn out.


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