The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The time is now

The+time+is+now

Following through on our Jesuit values

Beginning with the protests after George Floyd’s killing by police, we watched members of the St. Joe’s community fill social media with support for The Movement For Black Lives. We saw many performative statements, black squares on Instagram feeds and reposts of celebrities’ “words of encouragement.” 

Here we are, five weeks into the semester, and the attention on advocating for Black and brown lives has already waned. Police continue to kill Black Americans. At least 59 Black people were killed between May 26 and Aug. 31, according to CBS News. The Mapping Police Violence project said Black people are three times more likely to be killed by police than white people. 

The Louisville police officers who murdered Breonna Taylor have still not been charged. The Kentucky attorney general has yet to announce if his office will ever press charges against the police officers. 

At a Jesuit university rooted in Ignatian values, we learn to focus on not just the whole person, but the whole society. Every St. Joe’s student is required to take Faith, Justice, and the Catholic Religion-Theology 154. In this course, we are given a guideline to understand equality through Catholic social teachings and the importance of universal human rights. 

As members of a predominantly white institution, based in a primarily Black and brown community, we must continue to advocate for change in an actionable and visible manner. It’s time to deliver on the promises we made through our Instagram posts and retweets. 

Institutional racism is alive and thriving here at St. Joe’s as well. We must continue to challenge injustice on campus. After we have recognized our privilege, we can join one of the many clubs that give us the opportunity to learn about and actively challenge injustice in all of its forms. Some of these organizations include Women’s Leadership Initiative, SJUPride, Hawks for Just Employment, Black Student Union and University Student Senate. There are many more organizations that aspiring social justice activists can join in our community. Find them. Be a part of them.

We also must participate in the democratic process. A lot is at stake this November: women’s reproductive and health care rights, voting rights, the right of Black and brown people not to be killed by police. We watched as political leaders continue to encourage violence against marginalized groups such as immigrants, refugees, Black and brown people, journalists, people with disabilities and women. 

The death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg reminds us how precarious our human rights are. Ginsburg was an advocate for anti-gender discrimination and human rights. Her notorious opinion-“I dissent”-paved the way for fundamental rights for marginalized groups, specifically women and the LGBTQIA+ community. The torch has now been passed to us. We must uphold her legacy and vote for political leaders that reflect our social justice values. 

As members of a Jesuit university, we must challenge institutional racism and oppression wherever we see it. We should not be bystanders, or worse, performative activists. 

Black lives still matter, LGBTQIA+ lives still matter, transgender lives still matter, human rights still matter, women still deserve reproductive and health rights. It is our job to educate and hold each other accountable in this fight. As the late U.S. Representative John Lewis reminded us, we should “Never, ever be afraid to make some noise and get in good trouble, necessary trouble.”

It’s time to get off social media and make “good trouble.” 

 

—The Editorial Board

 

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Hawk News

Your donation will support the student journalists of St. Joseph's University. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Hawk News

Comments (0)

All The Hawk News Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *