Black clubs issue

This is in reply to Nora Schattke’s letter which appeared on Oct. 19. Ms. Schattke addresses an issue which, we’re sure, has caused concern for many students. The issue is that of black organizations existing on campus.

Ms. Schattke, or Nora if you will, states that “part of the problem of racism is brought about by the college itself.” While she is correct in stating that, Nora misses an obvious point. The university, in recognizing these organizations, realizes there is a need for them because of race problems.

For example, if we look at the history of black fraternities, we shall see that their existence arose from the “reluctance” of whites to allow blacks to join their fraternities. So to enjoy a sense of brotherhood, commitment, and accomplishment, they established their own group. This group, by the way, was not named a black fraternity—but was labeled as such by the university community because of the makeup of its members.

We can expound on this and apply it to the existence of other minority organizations. Nora, put yourself in our place: Imagine you went to a school where you were in the minority and the school and the community catered to the needs of the majority. Say an organization arose that paid special attention to the needs that you, as a minority, had. It recognized that in some ways you were different from the majority and special care was needed to help you adjust and keep up with everyone else. Wouldn’t you join this organization?

You see, Nora, when you are in the minority, you feel left out and alone, and a club designed for you is a welcome sight. Now, tell us, truthfully, would you want that organization abolished because the majority felt it was no longer functional?

What about your needs as a student and a person? What about other minority students? There are new minority students entering every semester—don’t they deserve attention?

In conclusion, we’d like to say that abolishing these clubs will not extinguish the problem of racism. Something more profound is in order. What it is, we don’t know, but everyone can start by trying to understand each other.

We are all individuals here, trying to attain the same goals, not just faceless colors. We must pull together to remove ourselves from this quagmire of prejudice.

Also, Nora, it’s a contradiction to say these clubs allow whites but have exclusive minority membership.

Kathy Burnette


Kym McCoy

junior—elem. educ.