Monday, March 30, 2015
I think, above all, that this trip has taught me how prevalent racism and segregation still are today. There were so many disturbing things about racism in the south that really hit home with me. Seeing pictures of happy slaves made me think that southern students are taught differently about the civil war than we are. Additionally seeing how many people still took pride in the confederate army really opened my eyes. Last but not least, hearing the stories of segregation in schools and fraternities/sororities was extremely troubling.
Although it’s easy to point my finger at the south and say how bad racism is there, this trip also made me open my eyes to the injustices all around me. Knowing that Hmong students were recently singled out on our campus, and that Eau Claire is a hub for sex trafficking, makes it obvious that there’s still a lot of work to do in our community. In order to make a change I will no longer be a silent bystander when I return to Eau Claire. Every slur I hear will be an opportunity to teach someone about the injustices behind that slur. I will fight for equal opportunities for all people, and check myself whenever I experience internal racism. Additionally, I will be engaged and informed about the world around me. I will use my citizenship to bring about systemic change and support causes that advocate for it.