EDITORIAL: No room for racism

Herald Staff

The issue: President Gary Ransdell met with the every WKU Greek president for the first time in almost two decades in response to the racial slurs used by the University of Oklahoma fraternity members earlier this month.

Our stance: Ransdell’s response deserves respect and applause. WKU must remain inclusive and accepting for the betterment of our campus community, as well as the world community.

There must be something in the water. With a response that can be likened to University of Oklahoma’s own President David Boren, Ransdell offered a precautionary warning to Greek presidents on March 18. If anyone happened to miss Ransdell’s (arguably) best mic-drop moment, here it is:

“If anyone thinks that because I was in a WKU fraternity 40 years ago, that I would be anything less than swift and direct in dealing with any act of stupidity coming from any member or members of any WKU Greek organization today, then they are making a mistake,” Ransdell said, himself an alumnus of WKU’s Sigma Alpha Epsilon chapter.

“I will be quick and harsh in my reactions to anything from anyone in any WKU organization that hints or suggests racism on this campus.”

No one can say he didn’t cover his bases. In fact, he left absolutely no room for interpretation. His exhortation to keep racism away from WKU is respectable and made us proud and, to be honest, a little relieved. Our university isn’t a stranger to racial tension of its own.

It was around this time last year Nick Gilyard, then a senior, was assaulted as he walked down the street. A black SUV drove by, called him a word that needs no more repeating and threw a cup of ice on him.

It’s vile. The corruption that causes one human being to despise another based on any one facet of their being is reprehensible.

Encountering racism at this point in history brings about a certain type of disgust relegated to only the worst of afflictions, such as rape or child abuse.

The society we live in, and the one most of us grew up in, does not provide any excuses or comfort for those with such warped fantasies in their mind.

We applaud President Ransdell’s comments, but we empathize more with President Boren—if you’re racist, just go home. We don’t want you.