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Higher Education

August 27, 2015

 

Question #1.  How does this institution/system (e.g., Mental Health System) contribute to/perpetuate racism and racist violence and other daily atrocities visited upon people of color?

Table Facilitator, Group 1

  • Curriculum erases black folks from history.

  • Access, who gets to attend these higher education institutions?

  • A symbolic wall exists around some of these institution.

  • Where are universities investing? Money, resources, offering multicultural affairs . . . less funding.

  • The way universities disregards students of color.

  • How do we give people tools to confront issues around injustices?

  • Organizing at Seattle University, where the university is trying to find its identity as a Jesuit academy that must bolster diversity. The school is trying to merge the Multicultural Affairs Office, MAO and International Student Office. There is tension between students at the multicultural affairs office and the campus.

  • Awareness is key.

Table Facilitator, Harriett Walden, Group 2

  • Social justice in schools is to teach about racism. History is not true, students are shielded from group violence.

  • Heightened awake, liberal racism, systematically left us at the door, integration has been a barrier.

  • When do you realize you are black?

  • Teachers are aware of what’s going on in class.

  • Parent who can help you figure it out.

  • Like-minded teachers.

  • Disconnects and cultural differences between church and education.

Table Facilitator, Group 3

  • Factors include, race, economic class.

  • Japan vs. US, emphasis on print culture rather than oral and emphasis on linear learning rather relational. The result is a social stratum that emerges from this system, it is domineering rather than sharing.

  • Focus on affirmative action, sometimes undesirable results.

  • Cultural groups set against each other, competing for limited places, too little space for full representation.

  • Ownership, for example, privately funded institutions vs. publicly funded ones, also, economic pressures and unequal funding and access is limited.

  • Lack of attention and focus on each culture in each institution. All minority students should be included in all subject matters.

  • Private institutions are driven by money, individualism.

  • Broader social training needs to be included and emphasized in higher education. Historically, higher education is for the wealthy.

 

Question #2.  What should have been done before the massacre in Charleston – what are the signs that we missed/are missing as a community in this area (e.g., Mental Health System)? Why does it take a massacre for so many white allies to recognize everyday racism and stand up to speak against it?

 

Table Facilitator, Group 1

  • Gun culture impacts the high numbers of violent racist crimes.

  • Segregation among neighborhoods.

  • It is emotionally taxing for the African Community to organize around race and racism.

  • Who is monitoring people as it relates to organizations that encourage hate?

  • United States is the most violent wielding country in the world.

  • It is not a society that encourages social services and helping others.

  • Informational Technology tools needs.

  • Conversations about, ignorance, economics and in-action continue to diminish

  • Racist neutral society is untrue.

Table Facilitator, Harriett Walden, Group 2

  • We are not educated about our own comforts zones.

  • Religion means privilege, keeps people from going further . . . privilege to go to college.

  • Don’t see people who are role models.

  • White allies, massacres are over, internalized repression, level reality, bias towards people.

  • What kind of justice system is product of higher education?

  • There’s been a shift away from mission.

 

Table Facilitator, Group 3

  • To build awareness and recognize everyday racism and to do something about it.

  • Courses and extracurricular groups in the educational systems.

  • Race isn’t talked about enough. A safe space in education is necessary.

  • As for Dylann Roof, hard to identify such individuals.

  • In applications that students fill out color is emphasized in such a limiting way.

  • The language of higher education, and other levels of education in this country, is too simple. It inhibits full communication from level to level, as in the case of Dylann Roof.

  • Maybe what is needed is room for sharing experience as well as learning knowledge.

  • We also need a more critical discussion, full discussion, about the right to bear arms. A historical perspective to prepare graduates for the adult world.

  • To talk about critical topics in classroom meeting, faculty meetings, administrative meets.

  • Host extra-curricular sessions in the community on critical topics.

 

Question #3.  What specific actions can you take as an individual post – massacre – to eliminate racism in (e.g., the Mental Health System) in the Seattle area? In the US? Give Specific action recommendations.

 

Table Facilitator, Group 1

  • Well intentioned white friends who are perpetuating racism.

  • How do you recognize your oppression?

  • We are the system.

  • How often do we as white people distance ourselves from white extremists?

Table Facilitator, Harriett Walden, Group 2

  • Eliminate racism in Seattle, USA.

  • One step and action at a time.

  • Comment on social media.

  • Afraid of saying the wrong thing.

  • What we need are courageous white people.

  • School system should be disciplined more harshly.

  • Reinstate affirmative action.

  • System rewards whiteness. Vote – Read – Dismantle System

  • Become more educated

  • Be more committed towards fairness.

  • Level the playing field.

  • Education is the funnel. Cultural emersion of teachers.

  • Spiritual conversion. Level of recognizing people as “brother/sister.”

  • Make higher education free, community colleges in Oregon and California.

  • Understand each other, role models.

Table Facilitator, Group 3

  • Peacemaking circles, to talk about difficult cultural issues starting with mutual understanding or who people are in the circle and where they are coming from and then start talking about race.

  • Race as part of human identity.

  • Our mixed human identity.

  • Churches in this area that offer a welcome to Filipinos and any other that wants to welcome and understand Mexican immigrants.

  • Unaddressed problems = gay/lesbian culture and religious freedom.

  • As a member of the clergy and of an interfaith organization, bringing people together to talk about “the great divide” between conservative black /// and the gay-lesbian community.

  • Step 1. Dialogue and Respect = Understanding.

  • Many, growing up in the south, saw tolerance toward. . .

  • Also, it’s important for Government benefits to hold on to our racial identities.

  • We need to get each persons’ story behind the story, experiential.

IDEAS: 

  • Classes in institutions, curriculum in schools can be shifted toward a more balances perspective.

  • More exposure to differences in people and safe places to talk about race.

  • Housing for students asking for room changes because they’re roommate is different from them.

  • Re-educating folks about history.

  • Giving people the tools to talk about race.

  • As individuals we can begin to stereotype. Take people as they are.

  • Don’t just show up when the community is in crisis.

  • Thinking about alliances as a journey.

  • Approach communities with humility.

 

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