When movements gain social momentum, people point to the hashtag. #BlackLivesMatter. #WhyIStayed. #BringBackOurGirls. But what’s missed so often are the voices behind those tags and tweets. Early this evening, students behind #SBU4Mizzou gave their names, faces, voices and stories to a movement and marched in solidarity with protesters at the University of Missouri.
— Lei Taka (@John_Leinnon) November 12, 2015
At college campuses including Yale and Ithaca College, students have protested against what they argue is their administrations’ inability to institute policy to combat racial discrimination on campus and proactively promote equality. Students marched to the front of the administration building on the Stony Brook University campus and held signs, one read “#InSolidarityWithMizzou” and “ConcernedStudent1950,” a reference to the first year African American students were admitted to the University of Missouri. Members of Stony Brook University’s administration joined them, most notably, Stony Brook University President Samuel Stanley.
“Some of the things that happened at that particular school resonated with some of the students here because what has happened at this university or another university is something a lot of students can relate with—being the recipient of some type of racial remarks or racial slurs or sometimes the indifference of— or the invisibility of— being black or latino or under represented in any type of environment but specifically here at Stony Brook University,” Assistant Dean for Multicultural Affairs Dr. Jarvis Watson said.
Listen to the full interview with Dr. Watson:[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/232831565″ params=”auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&visual=true” width=”100%” height=”450″ iframe=”true” /] “What we decided to do since Stony Brook didn’t blatantly say that they are in support or in solidarity with the things that are happening at Mizzou, we decided to let them know that we care as a student body and as African American students and that our voice should be heard. So this is just a start of a movement that we want to have and it’s basically to empower all African American students that go here,” Shantia McCarthur said.
Listen to the full interview with McCarthur, president of Phi Rho Epsilon sorority: [soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/232831987″ params=”auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&visual=true” width=”100%” height=”450″ iframe=”true” /]
Stony Brook University students aren’t alone in sharing their message of solidarity:
— BSU at LSU (@BSUatLSU) November 12, 2015
— Grant Prather (@gee_prather) November 12, 2015
— Stanford University (@Stanford) November 12, 2015