I am a Biology major, and I am also a commuter. There are a few reasons why I want to reveal that information about myself. The first and most relevant reason is that this combination means that I am not entirely in tune with everything going on at SLU. Everything I hear tends to be secondhand, and I am not on campus to witness all the awesome things going on at SLU. But one thing that I have been hearing quite a bit about recently is bias incidents. And to be honest, it just depresses me. I thought that humanity, and, especially an institution like SLU, had moved beyond this hurtful discrimination.
Because I work in science, I subscribe to the theory of evolution. It honestly just makes sense. As a person who loves the intricacies of society and culture, I also believe that cultures and people evolve. The cool part about believing in the evolution of culture is that it means that no culture is “better” than another; they are all equally evolved, just in different directions. That being said, I thought that the world had moved beyond this blatant discrimination. At the very least we are on the track towards becoming more accepting of each other as human beings with feelings. Pretty much every single culture has decided that slavery or extreme discrimination is wrong. You know what I read from that? That discrimination helps no one. All it does is allow us to put other people down to make us feel better. And sometimes, those put-downs stem from ignorance of how the words would affect someone. But in this case, the actions are so extreme that there is no chance they are accidental. People here at SLU are going around acting in ways that look to purposefully offend people at this school. In my humble opinion, this is a step backwards in evolution. I don’t understand this desire to undo society’s advancements in such a vindictive manner.
The majority of people here are wonderful and focused on the greater STL community and the issues of injustice present in our society. You are kind, considerate, and overall, I am honored to be a part of this institution. I wouldn’t exchange my last two years here for anything, and it cuts me to my heart that some people are going around ruining that community solely to feel better about themselves for putting others down. Having been both bullied and a bully in my life, I know that in that situation no one wins. Everyone just ends up feeling bad. But approaching people with love and compassion brings a sense of fulfillment that I have never discovered anywhere else. And the majority of SLU agrees with me about that fact.
These bias incidents need to stop. I’m not stupid, I know that my saying it needs to stop won’t stop anything. But I hope people read this article and realize the danger that comes from allowing discrimination. Then they must go forward and try to work towards eliminating it all together. We probably will never eradicate it forever, but it is a bigger issue than any of us give it credit. I implore you to join together and work to build a better SLU community and world free of petty discrimination. I alone can do nothing, but if there is a unified movement to monitor our own behavior and the behavior of those around us, perhaps we can make progress.