EDITORIAL – Town and Gown Collaboration Needed To Pressure UK

Posted March 7, 2016

     The Black Univ. of Kentucky Students responsible for the Town Hall meeting which exposed serious concerns for student safety and achievement in an increasingly hostile racial environment should be commended.

Though advised by staff and faculty mentors, the students should be contacted by local organizations for support. As students, their focus should be course work and jobs to helps pay for school.

The support of local adults, retired and working, could double the amount of exposure and number of participants for any future #UKCallToAction event.

History proves that major corporations, including public universities such as UK, are very concerned about negative press and negative public perceptions.

There should have been an outdoor press conference held prior to the meeting to get media on the campus, most would probably have stayed for the event. Local partners could have done the lunch-time news rounds and accepted media phone calls for interviews, which the students refused, to give the meeting more impact.

The Town Hall meeting should not be the end of the movement. There should have been an announcement about the next public meeting to evaluate the universities progress toward solving the issues.

The community must embrace the students and the students must embrace the tremendous asset that is the local community, who is waiting for their call to support.

Can you imagine the impact statement that could be made by holding mass demonstrations outside Rupp Arena before UK basketball games? What would happen if there was a local boycott of UK home basketball games?

Students alone cannot accomplish anything of this magnitude. It would take the support of Black Lexington and others.

Students, make the #UKCallToAction a #LexTownCallToAction and you will yield greater results.


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