“Our view” is prepared by the Executive board and should be considered the
institutional voice of The Record
Meredith Jarchow, Editor-in-Chief — [email protected]
Sean Kelly, Managing Editor — [email protected]
Lydia Farmer, Variety/Managing Editor — [email protected]
Nick Swanson, Opinion/Editorial Editor — [email protected]
The excitement of returning to campus for spring semester quickly faded with the arrival of unwelcome signs encouraging white supremacy.
On Wednesday, Jan. 17 signs proclaiming to be “unapologetically white” and to “end white guilt” were found around St. Joseph, St. Cloud, and the St. Cloud State University (SCSU) and CSB campuses. The signs had a logo for the St. Cloud State White Student Union, though the group has no official affiliation with SCSU.
The signs were illegally hung on powerline poles and were taken down by the St. Joseph Police Department and members of the community.
In one of their signs, they claim that “Hate Speech is Free Speech”. While hate speech that does not incite violence is protected as free speech under the law, we at The Record do not promote this avenue of free speech.
As journalists and crusaders of free speech, it disheartens us to see such discriminating signs anonymously hung throughout our community. By reporting, we practice free speech with every issue, but always with the intention to use it for a productive end. We strive to inform and investigate. This “union” strives to be vengeful and disruptive. Their actions divide and incite anger.
This past year in The Record there were multiple Letter to the Editor and opinion submissions that responded to previous articles and issues on campus. This is a productive form of dialogue that helps members of our CSB/SJU community with differing views understand each other better. The St. Cloud State White Student Union signs do the exact opposite. This isn’t discourse, this is aggressively projecting personal insecurities.
It can be easy to stoop to their level. To give in and participate in the ineffective dialogue. To slander, to attack, to belittle. But our community is better than that, as we have seen in the past week.
The numerous emails and statements from CSB/SJU clubs, organizations and our two presidents showed our true Benedictine values. Despite this horrible act that occurred just two days after Martin Luther King Jr Day, our community decided to be better than the St. Cloud. State White Student Union.
Fear springs from ignorance. As Johnnies and Bennies, it is our duty to stand up against such hatred towards members of our community. We must unseed the roots of tyranny to allow respectful discourse to flourish.
If we do not stand up to hatred, it will continue to dwell in our society. While free speech is an act of reciprocity, reciprocity extends only so far. Hope for a better tomorrow must not be fleeting. Our pursuit of equality cannot leave our conscience.
Continue to rise above, Bennies and Johnnies.