Unsigned: Generalizing Queen’s for the poor actions of students
By now, it seems that every major news outlet in Canada has covered what has come to be known as the “Queen’s party,” where a group of students dressed up in racist costumes.
Though the actions of the students must be condemned, we have sympathy for the rest of Queen’s students and administration.
Calling all Queen’s students racist because of the actions of a small number of students is a generalization. Right now, they’re being painted as a racist school because of the actions of only 150 students.
Post-secondary institutions should always be aware that they are advocating for diversity, tolerance and mindfulness, but calling Queen’s racist as a whole is insinuating that they promote hate-speech and intolerance or that racism is not punishable within the university community.
It’s not like racism is exclusive to Queen’s, either. Earlier in the year, a small number of Western students displayed a “Western Lives Matter” sign and it seems no matter where you turn on Halloween, there’s a racist costume ready to greet you.
Laurier has not been without our faults, too. In 2007, there was a similar event during Winter Carnival where a group of Laurier students dressed up in black face.
The students who attended this party should be ashamed of themselves for their poor choices, but that doesn’t mean that every person associated with Queen’s should be ashamed with them.
This is an example of how our actions represent our institution. Because these students represent Queen’s, the university administration is now forced to apologize for something they claimed they didn’t fund or condone.
At Laurier, we should take the “Queen’s party” as a lesson: we have to be mindful that we’re always representing the best of the Golden Hawk spirit and that it simply comes down to being as respectful as we can be to everyone we may come across.