Campus not exactly equal

John Brown University claims to be a community, but in all honesty, it’s nowhere close to the characteristics of a community. If JBU was a “community,” every ethnic group here on campus would be acknowledged, treated with respect and appreciated through events, classes and even worship.

Some would argue that JBU is a community for everyone here, but in reality it’s only a community for the majority here. As an African-American student here at JBU, I have seen this every day since my freshman year. From being the only African-American in every class to not even acknowledging African-American worship at chapel.

The majority here will smile in my face or any other minority student here, and in return, talk about us behind our backs and even judge us from afar. People here judge you because you’re not like them and look at you like “Why are you here?” or “You don’t belong here.” I’ve witnessed this for three years, from students here to even some of the faculty here, from the way they look at me and talk to me.

Before you judge people different than you, talk to them and get to know them. It’s not easy being a minority student here at JBU, but we try to fit in and interact with people around campus. The least you can do is respond back to us. Just because we have our earphones in our ears or we’re talking to other minority students here, doesn’t give you the right to not interact with us and get to know us as a people and JBU students.

You’ll be surprised how much you learn by just talking with someone outside your ethnic background. As a matter of fact, I challenge every JBU student here to do that this year. If JBU is going to call itself a community, then act like a community. Accept “all” worship styles, accept “all” different backgrounds here on campus, and act like a Christian instead of pretending. The challenge has been issued.