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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Feb. 23, 1998)
should learn love
By Josh Funk
Black love is an oxymoron,
says a black Baptist minister and
The two words don’t make
sense with each other because
black means denigrated and love
means liberated, the Rev.
Osagyefo Sekou said in a work
shop about Generation X without
Malcolm on Friday.
Sekou, a minister from St.
Louis, raised the question of what
it means to be black in America;
he looked into the troubled past,
and he encouraged black students
to fight for their futures.
“To find out why we exist we
must answer four questions: Who
am I, am I really what I am, am I
everything I ought to be, and did I
lie along the way?”
But to answer those questions,
blacks must deal with the past, he
“The slave ship is a metaphor
for the transformation of black
people (from a proud tradition) to
denigration,” Sekou said.
“But we can find illumination
in the darkness of our past.”
Sexism, racism and class dis
crimination are deeply routed in
American history, he said.
“None of us fit the stark defin
ition of black,” Sekou said. “By
definition the whites here can’t be
white because they are a minority.
“We must see beyond race and
gender to the message.”
In history black people have
much to be angry with, he said,
and that anger is voiced in music
like today’s gangsta rap.
“The DJ is the high priest of
the party; the lyrics are scripture
and the club a sanctuary,” Sekou
Education is a liberating act,
but it is also a struggle for blacks.
“Remember that you fought
like hell to get where you are,”
Everyone, he said, ultimately
must decide what is most impor
tant: “What are you willing to die
Success is in networking
Speakers: Seek administrative resources
By Brian Carlson
Because black students often
face difficult adjustments on pre
dominantly white campuses, they
should build relationships and
know their rights, workshop
speakers said Saturday.
In a workshop called
“Facilitating the Empowerment of
Students,” three speakers said
black students can enhance their
success by “networking”: cultivat
ing relationships with black facul
ty members and understanding
processes for filing complaints.
“You have the responsibility to
know everything you can about
accessing your rights in an educa
tional system,” said Lawrence Lee
of the U.S. Department of
Education’s Office of Civil Rights.
Ernest Middleton, director of
minority affairs at the University
of Missouri-Kansas City, said stu
dents can slip through the cracks if
they don’t seek resources such as
the office of minority student
affairs, the office of affirmative
action, minority student organiza
tions and minority faculty.
“You can always determine
those staff that are interested in
your success,” he said.
Students also should know how
to file complaints when they expe
rience racism, he said.
Anna Thomas, a graduate stu
dent in education at the University
of Missouri-Kansas City, said as
an undergraduate she objected to a
She struggled to make her
complaint heard amid university
bureaucracy, she said. But with
persistence and contact with the
school’s minority affairs adminis
trators, she helped bring her com
plaint to the professor’s attention.
“Be prepared for the war, not
just the battle,” she said.
Student participants shared
some of the struggles minorities
faced on their campuses.
Leviticus Za’mien, an officer
for the Black Student Alliance at
the University of Colorado at
Boulder, said his school was seek
ing to scale back its multicultural
When he asked how to protest
this decision, Lee said it would
“You have to be willing to
stand fast and stay the course,” he
said. “It’s not easy to file a com
plaint or bring charges against a
Lee said it was more effective
to work within the system, using
the influence of minority student
groups and faculty, than to orga
nize radical protests - such as
occupying the administration
building, as Za’mien suggested.
“Taking extreme measures
sounds good; it sounds nostalgic,”
Lee said. “But let me tell you, it
But in an interview, Za’mien
said his group had held meetings
with administrators to protest
racial incidents on campus and had
mostly become mired in bureau
“I’m more on the extreme
side,” he said. “I don’t think the
Columnist: Black, white workers
face historical economic division
By Todd Anderson
Even though black Americans have
been free of slavery for more than 100
years, their struggle for economic
equality has not yet ended, Julianne
Malveaux said Friday.
Malveaux, a syndicated columnist
and frequent lecturer, led a workshop on
economics at the Comhusker Hotel dur
ing the Big 12 Conference on Black
Black Americans have been eco
nomically successful, Malveaux said,
but laws and regulations have often
been created to limit growth.
“Whenever we amass wealth, the
rules of the game change,” she said.
Historically, Malveaux said, skilled
workers have not been allowed to own
the tools of their trade. Black property
was often stolen or destroyed.
After time, skilled workers were rel
egated to lower-paying, unskilled jobs,
That movement has created an eco
nomic division among blacks as well as
a large pay difference between whites
and blacks, she said.
In addition, Malveaux said, black
Americans are ambivalent to making
money because of religious and cultural
biases, which leads them to pursue
careers that do not create capital.
The key to filling the gap between
poor and rich, she said, is well-thought
“Our best relative power is in the
labor market,” she said. “When we are
organized, our wages are better.”
Also, black Americans have power
Boycotts should be narrowly
defined, Malveaux said, and leaders
need to indicate what specific goal they
have in mind.
Defined planning and education
will help persuade participants to con
tinue, despite the economic conve
niences that might arise from a boycott,
“You need to look at the long haul
and keep your eye on the prize,” she
Our best relative power is in the labor
market. When we are organized, our wages
columnist and lecturer
Speaker: Reinvest in society
By Jessica Fargen
George Fraser’s father had a
dream for him: a good education
and a good job.
But Fraser, national speaker
and founder of SuccessSource,
told his sons he wanted that and
more from them.
“You need to get a job and cre
ate a job,” Fraser said.
The only way black people
could add to the nation’s 621,000
black-owned businesses, Fraser
told participants Friday, was to
start networking by giving to each
other, instead of just receiving for
Fraser defined networking as
identifying and building relation
ships to share information and
“It’s all about relationships,
brothers and sisters - the key to
Fraser is the author of several
books, including “Success Runs in
Our Race: The Complete Guide to
Effective Networking in the
African American Community.”
He said trading business cards
with someone and then asking
them for a job was not networking
- it was begging.
“You can’t take out of a bank
what you haven’t put into it,” he
said. “If you have nothing, it’s
because you are giving nothing.”
Instead of earning money for
themselves, he said, black people
should earn money and then rein
vest it into the community.
He asked the audience, “Are
you tithing to the community? Are
you giving back to the communi
But before black people will
have the money to give back, they
need to change their current
spending habits, he said.
“The money we have is invest
ed poorly in interest payments,
homes we can’t afford, BMWs and
Mercedes we shouldn’t be riding
in and Tommy Hilfiger, Nike and
Anne Klein,” he said.
He said black people could fix
this “economic illiteracy” by join
. - .. : / i ■ - ■ - - ft:
ing the 5 percent of black people
who own stocks and bonds.
Black people have “an army of
potential” to create wealth and
jobs, which “raises up the poor.”
And now, Fraser said, is the time
to use that army.
Black history has been stalled
since the civil rights movements
of the 1960s, he said. Blacks need
to revive progress by networking
and giving back.
Several students at the confer
ence said Fraser’s theme coincided
with the theme of the 21st annual
conference —“Black Love ...
Restoring the Essence of the
Angelique Freeman, a junior at
Metropolitan State College in
Denver, said Fraser’s ideas about
giving to relationships made
“1 could really get in touch
with him that way - you only get if
you give out of the kindness of
Fraser said his formula for life
was based on giving.
“You give to get to give.”
CHRISTOPHER OUTLAW from St. Ambrose University in Davenport, Iowa,
was shocked after finding out the number of blacks infected by the HIV
virus every year. “HIV Prevention in the African American Community”
was one of more than 20 workshops at the conference.
people need acceptance
By Brad Davis
Though Friday’s workshop was
titled “The Tragic Mulatto,” participants
said mulattos were anything but tragic.
For too long, participants said, mul
tiracial people have been forced to
choose one race to identify themselves.
Myths that mulattos are “sell-outs”
if they choose one race over another
must end, most of the audience agreed.
Michelle Ludeman, a junior at the
University of Missouri-Kansas City,
said social standards make multiracial
people deny part oftheir ethnic heritage.
“Why should I have to (choose (me
race)?” she said. “If I choose, I’m giving
into what society wants me to do.”
The effects of historical discrimi
nation still linger today, said Linn
Posey, a student from Macalester
College in St. Paul, Minn.
“People put me in a box,” Posey, a
light-skinned biracial student said.
“People put me in a white box, but I
think you have to be proud of all of you.”
Anna Thomas, a University of
Missouri-Kansas City graduate student
who led die workshop with Ludeman,
said changing peoples’ attitudes about
mulattos would allow multiracial peo
ple to celebrate all their heritage.
“If you’re secure in yourself, it does
n’t matter how other people choose to
identify themselves,”Thomas said.
“It’s important to always maintain
your heritage. We’re all one country,
but we’re not all one ethnicity.”
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