A VISION I MAY NEVER SEE!!
Wed Oct 7 11:32:51 CDT 1998
I too see the examples of isolation and feel the pain of loneliness
in the community. I as well am not trying to "bash" anyone in the
community, but trying instead to let people hear and start thinking
about the issues at hand.
The lack of women in the community is clearly not an issue that
should be ignored; there is not an acceptable limit--diversity can never
end, but when we search for that diversity in the exclusion of others
diverse needs-- it is detrimental to the wholistic goal of "full and
equal participation in the activity". From the outside, individuals can
say "We are changing--there are more females in the activity". Yes, that
is true, but that is not where the ball stops rolling. In my two years
of debate, I can count on my fingers the number of rounds in which I
have debated other african-americans.
True, many squads have taken the first step, but personally I do
not see that as a matter of recognition. There is a emergency in this
activity that needs a remedy. Ever since I was 13 and began debating,
I never had a role model. I did not know that they were college debaters
that were successful and black. The idea did not embed itself in my
mind, because the images that one sees in the debate community is a
constant vision of "white", both men and women. When starting this
activity, individuals mimic the objects/ people that they believe to
exemplify perfection. In the life of an African-american, that does not
happen. A sense of alienation and un-explainable dis-association is
always present--even now I see the effects of that in my career. It is
not something I or others of my culture cannot escape, because it is not
just a "debate community" phenomenon. Taking steps, true are a start,
but they IN NO WAY CAN BE THE INCREMENTAL PROGRESSION OF BLACKS AND
OTHERS INTO THIS ACTIVITY. The community does not need time to
"adjust", we need to find out what we can do to get more minorities in
the activity and do it. Talk is truly cheap,especially in this matter.
I believe that the failure to see the insider's view of the issue is a
part of the problem, but only through constant revision of our agendas
in this community will, the harm be solved.
This not only is disturbing but dangerous. It represents a
community that acknowledges a "burden", instead of a "duty" to integrate
more blacks and other minorities into the activity that is entitled to
the mass gathering of intellectual knowledge that should be enjoyed by
everyone. Why is it that this activity lends itself to the most
privileged? Even on a topic--that is inclusive of race discussion--it
seems as if those issues are being thrown to the side. Are we afraid of
that discussion? Why do we run away from as it makes its presence
felt in society and as well as in "our community".
Evaluate the situation and think about its ramifications on the
individuals in this activity. Sometimes our pre-occupation with
"WINNING" is the objective, instead of guaranteeing a steady field where
everyone can "WIN", and have an objective and that opportunity.
Get Your Private, Free Email at http://www.hotmail.com
More information about the Mailman