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Our View: Racism in Arkansas continues

Published: Thursday, October 11, 2012

Updated: Thursday, October 11, 2012 14:10

Arkansas has been part of its fair share of racial-based history. From being the site of major battles in the Civil War in the 1860s to the forced desegregation of Little Rock Central High School in 1957, Arkansas has been a battleground for civil rights for most of its existence.

Now it is once again in the spotlight, this time in the small community of Wynne, just 50 miles south of Jonesboro.

Two white players on the junior varsity football team were expelled for the rest of the semester after having allegedly grabbed a 14-year-old black player in a locker room and fitted a noose around his neck before proceeding to drag him across the floor.

The expulsion of the two players was a more lenient punishment than the full year expulsion suggested by Wynne’s Superintendent Carl Easley according to an Associated Press report.

Five students were originally suspended for the incident before the Wynne School Board’s judgment came down Oct. 3. Wynne police said no one was injured in the incident and that “no criminal activity occurred.”

It’s the 21st century. We live in an age of growing social consciousness, but still find ourselves retreading over issues our parents and grandparents fought for decades before us.

However, we don’t live in an ideal world, at least not yet. We don’t believe society as a whole will wake up one day with the sudden clarity to not judge people by the color of their skin, but we can still make the strides to achieve that goal.

But those strides begin at home, where children like the ones suspended for the Wynne incident can be taught to give people that are different from themselves a chance at proving there’s more to them than what stereotypes they have been labeled with.

“Our View is written by the editorial staff. The opinions are not necessarily reflective of the student body, faculty or administration of Arkansas State University.

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