The Real Problem

By Nico Marchio

Over the past couple weeks the “politically incorrect party” has given us a chance reflect on the issue of race at Mac. I can’t say that I have a full grasp of exactly what went on that night but all I know is that two very foolish individuals in extremely poor taste decided to push the limits of a themed party that already seemed to invite this kind of trouble. Perhaps in an effort to save face or to soothe emotional injuries, the administration took issue with this party.
In the midst of all the news frenzies and Bulletin Flashes that have ensued, this incident has spurred a dialogue about race at Macalester. Unfortunately, I fear that people have become lost in a mess of blame and misguided outrage and have lost sight of the real problem.
To me, the real problem is that every single day at Macalester we are blind to the institutional racism that surrounds us. Just look at who is called to clean up after our excesses on a Saturday night at 2 AM or who works ten hour plus days to make us an unappreciated meal. Then look at the kind of people with all the PhDs and who have an office and a plaque. There is something all too historical about this and the present dialogue has done nothing but cloud what should ultimately be addressed.

As the unconstructive debate over the “politically incorrect party” dissipates and as Founder’s Day approaches I think we should contemplate and recognize the value of the people who make up the foundation that the pillars of Macalester weigh down upon, the people who we step upon every single day and fail to see. So we are given a choice, we can either choose to celebrate Founder’s Day with disregard to those who will be waiting upon us or we can choose to celebrate those people who wait upon us and do a favor for them by asking the college to find a way to make their life a little better so that maybe, just maybe, their kids might be able to break free from the chains of institutional racism that shackle them today.