Emily Kochanek, Morgan Austin, Lara Garrett, and Talia Leblanc – 1851 Staff
Uganda trip canceled
After months of debate within the community, President Michael Alexander announced on October 16 that the service trip to Uganda will be cancelled for this year due to the country’s anti-gay legislation and its implications to human rights as well as terrorist activity and the possible spreading of Ebola.
In a letter to the community, Alexander wrote, “I hope we can go forward confident in the knowledge that we can engage in open discourse on challenging topics while exhibiting respect, and even kindness, to those whose opinions differ from our own.”
Student voices discusses bystanding
Professor Karin Raye and Director of Counseling Janice Fletcher held a panel on Tuesday, October 14, featuring students who experienced hazing, verbal abuse, sexual harassment, and sexism. The panel consisted of seniors, Kevin Post, Leah Pappalardo, Becca Bissonnette, and junior Jay Brooks. The students discussed ways in which they were active bystanders in their encounters and encouraged audience members to become active bystanders.
“It is your business, you’re the bystander,” said Bissonnette. “If you don’t do it, the person next to you won’t either.”
Pappalardo mentioned people shouldn’t shy away from being an active bystander. “If they don’t want it, at least they know [help] is there,” she said.
The panelists told the audience to handle bystander situations in a comfortable manner for their own safety. Brooks stressed the importance of not getting fully involved in the situation. Post suggested talking to the perpetrator after the incident. Both Brooks and Post shared similar opinions of the importance of considering someone’s life and well being rather than worrying about the repercussions or reputation.
Talk of Ages on Freedom Summer
Clifton Reed, a former Tuskgee pilot and David Trimble, Ph.D, a participant in Freedom Summer in 1964 and psychologist, discussed the importance of African Americans and their right to vote.
“There is something immoral about asking an individual to go half way around the world to become involved in a struggle in which they did not vote for…And because of that, in 1970, there was an amendment in the Constitution authorizing the voting age to be lowered from 21 to 18, and for that it is worth remembering for all times,” said Reed about voting age compared to military service age.
Trimble reflected on the segregation of African Americans in Mississippi and his experience volunteering at Freedom Summer.
Lasell hosts speaker for athletes
Lasell invited River Huston, award winning poet, sex educator, journalist, and college speaker to meet with athletes in her talk titled, “Surviving The Weekend.”
Huston educated the audience on the reality of sex, consent, and drug and alcohol abuse by telling her own story of how she was sexually assaulted and left to fend for herself after a night of underage drinking.
She told her story and her battle with alcohol abuse, revealing her HIV virus and coping mechanisms over the years. Her story was truly breathtaking and brought prospective to the reality of these issues to college students that could potentially be in the same position as she was.
Huston said she believed her purpose was to educate young people all over the world about the realities they may face and how to take precautions.