In response to the staff editorial entitled “Protest poorly executed,” which appeared in The Famuan on Nov. 26, we, the protesters, find it tragic that one of our own has taken such a negative position, and we were deeply saddened by the comments of the Famuan staff.
To give a brief description of our class, Professor Jeffery Mill’s African-American history, we have scholarly discussions about our black history.
These discussions led to topics about black pride and uplifting the race. We decided that we should be proactive and do something on our own to encourage campus pride. It was in this context that the “Stay of the Grass” protest came to pass.
On the first day of our protest some FAMU students said, “This isn’t FSU so f– that s–. We don’t need to stay off of the grass.” Hence the comparison to Florida State University came to fruition. For the Famuan staff to write that FSU is a completely different world than FAMU is a clear display of the double standard that we, as black people, face every day.
We were in business attire because we were serious and didn’t want to look raggedy. Professor Mills did indeed offer extra credit, but a lot of us turned it down; we wanted the protest to be a genuine expression of our sentiments.
We figured that someone might challenge the true spirit of the protest if there was class credit involved and, sure enough, we were correct. You commented that the ground was meant for walking on and we agree with you. The word “sidewalk” has “walk” in it and grass does not. That alone should be enough reason to stay off the grass!
Currently we are putting together a letter to give to the university that will suggest paved walkways be placed through grassy areas near the School of Journalism and Graphic Communication. We are also working to get funds earmarked so that the protest can be an ongoing effort. Why wasn’t any of that included in the editorial?
Too often we criticize before we know all of the facts; this is why there is always so much negativity surrounding anything that happens at FAMU. Our hope is that in the future, since everyone else looks for all of the negatives in FAMU, we will begin to look for positives in the FAMU activities.
Why not say “GREAT JOB!” or congratulate us on our efforts and make suggestions for the next step? Why not join us and encourage others to find ways to make a positive impact on our university?
We received kudos from FAMU President Ammons and the National Alumni Association, so it is unfortunate that our own students verbally abused us.
Andrea E. Turk is a senior political science student from Gainesville. She can be reached at email@example.com.