December 1, 2009

On racism in advertisements and the Diversity Poster Campaign:

Michelle says:
A lot of time we focus on racism in the United States, because we live there but there is a lot of racism worldwide. In the promotional ad for Couples Retreat the version shown in the United States has four couples, one of them happens to be a black couple. As I signed out of Yahoo! After checking my e-mail I noticed a story that caught my eye, it said “Universal's UK 'Couples Retreat' Poster Brings Cries of Racism by Removing Black Actors” and I screamed I knew it! In the ad of the UK’s Couple Retreat there were only three couples, not four and the one couple missing was the black couple. This made me think of my Nigerian friend Monisola who used to tell me she faced racist people in London when she used to go to for school vacations. The fact that the UK removed the black couple shows that the world is still very closed minded and racist. Just when you think the world is becoming better and we have one more ally more negativity seems to spread across the world. I happened to be talking about it, living as a person who can be seen as a person of color truly is a challenge. Walking into a classroom every day and not knowing whether the people there are going to judge me for my knowledge or for my skin color. A friend of mine always says she has to give double the effort and participate in all her classes so that people will begin to respect for her intelligence and not look at her as she is just part of the college because she is Latina. At times, I feel like I have to speak up to prove a point in which I am an intelligent Latina student and I made it to college based on my smarts. There are times were I do not say anything because I am not a representation of my race, and every person can be judged and viewed at their own level and I should not be trying to prove a point, because waking up every day and having to deal with the world’s most ignorant people is a work on its own.

Joniece writes about the Diversity Poster Campaign
On Tuesday November 17, 2009 the Diversity Committee held its first discussion for the Awareness Campaign. The poster campaign was developed by the original Diversity Committee and was a way for them to actively raise awareness not only about the committee but also surrounding issues of diversity and inclusiveness. The committee is still in its early stages of development and so we are working to bring about knowledge of the committee’s purpose. I was thrilled to see both familiar and unfamiliar faces in attendance at the discussion. A lot of good points were raised and the discussion could have gone on for hours.

Some topics that were heavily discussed were interracial dating, stereotypes, and the culture of Stonehill students. These discussion points either caught someone’s eye, or gave the people in attendance a lot to speak of.

We were initially having issues with the topics expressed in some of the posters one dealing with explaining diversity to a blind person. It was brought to our attention and some may have felt that the poster “had a negative connotation about what blind people can comprehend and understand simply because they are visually impaired. Those who are visually impaired can certainly understand and interpret diversity in their own way without someone having to describe it to them. The question makes it sound like blind people are “less than” or not as smart as someone who is not visually impaired.” Although this is very true, some of the committee members felt that the question was given a negative connotation and it is up to the reader to think about how the question may make them feel. We were definitely not implying that the blind are less than in any way. We were more thinking about the racial aspect to the question. Many people see race as a color so how do you really describe this to someone without giving them examples or representation to support your ideas.