NBA Clippers owner Donald Sterling has been the center of a recent media storm after TMZ posted a video of his racially insensitive remarks. NBA commissioner Adam Silver, who became commissioner in February, issued a lifetime ban to Sterling earlier this month. His bold stance on the incident has spoken volumes about the public and racial justice.
Until recently, black film had become an obsolete genre. Our generation no longer has Spike Lee films or movies with a definite agenda to promote black culture, but instead, recent films like “12 Years a Slave,” “The Help,” “Django Unchained” and “The Butler” are redefining the genre. Even better: They are resonating with today’s audiences.
Like most college students, I’m very involved with multiple social networking websites like Twitter and Facebook. Of course, these websites are a great way to keep in touch with my family and friends, but I’ve also fostered my own ambitions outside of the classroom and have found more uses for these same online tools. As young people, we should take advantage of the open resources online.
Northrop Auditorium has proved to be a central part of the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities campus since it opened in 1929. The monumental structure has blossomed as a center for prestigious art and as a site of many demonstrations throughout our campus’s history. As the University reinvests in this beautiful venue, it also reinvests in its past and its future. Northrop reopened its doors last week for the grand reopening after a four-year renovation, which cost $88.2 million. In a sense, Northrop has been a long-standing symbol of our campus through time.
April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, and though statistics mark improvement, sexual assault is still a problem that requires our attention, specifically in the black community. Sexual assault has proven to be a continuous issue in the U.S. Fortunately, the U.S. Department of Justice’s National Crime Victimization Survey shows a decrease in reported sexual assault rates over the past decade.
Earlier this month, the Second Floor Advisory committee held a ribbon-cutting ceremony to recognize the renovation of Coffman Union’s second floor, but some remain bitter over the project and protested at the event. The renovation project began last summer and caused controversy because many murals outside student group offices were painted over. Many students were worried that the project would compromise the cultural essence of the student centers.
When “12 Years A Slave” actress Lupita Nyong’o won an Oscar for her breakout role, she became Hollywood’s new “It girl.” The Kenyan starlet received praise for both her looks and talent, which, truth be told, does not happen every day for women of color. Nyong’o is the newest portrayal of a new standard of beauty for black women. The definition of beauty is constantly evolving. Despite the saying that it’s in the eye of the beholder, beauty has a consistent portrayal in mass media images.
President Barack Obama once again proclaimed this March to be Women’s History Month over the weekend, and he called on Americans to celebrate International Women’s Day on March 8. This month is vital because it provides a moment to stop and appreciate the many women throughout history whose impacts we take for granted. Similar to Black History Month, Women’s History Month commemorates a marginalized group of people. With this in mind, this month not only celebrates the female gender, but also the progression of our society as equals.
We’re nearing the end of Black History Month, a time to not only recognize black history on a national scale but also how it pertains to our own university. The University of Minnesota has its own rich black history, including the Morrill Hall takeover in 1969 and the establishment of the African-American studies department. These events mark the beginning of a strong black student culture that still exists today in student groups, Afrocentric departments and courses, and black greek organizations.
Social networking usually seems harmless and humorous. However, beneath the layers of memes, Vines and hashtags lays strong social opinions, which should not be taken so lightly. Since late 2013, the Twitter trend “lightskin vs. darkskin” has spread through an array of social media apps. The trend is full of jokes about the supposed differences between light-skinned and dark-skinned African-Americans. While users may just be joking, the phenomenon has larger implications.