From the Editor: Why I approved the Capstone article about “spooking White people”
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We have received a lot of feedback from Westmont students about one of last week’s Capstone articles. The satirical article, titled “How to spook White people,” uses humor to name Whiteness and White privilege.
I and the rest of The Horizon’s editorial staff operate from the understanding that a thing called White privilege does exist—in America today there are systems in place which give advantages to people who are White. This basic premise undergirds my reasons for allowing this article to be published.
When the article was proposed, I made the decision to publish it--because it would violate students’ free speech, The Horizon’s content is not reviewed by our faculty advisor prior to publication.
I decided to publish the article for three reasons. First, it did not appear to me to be offensive, given that it was written by a White person, about White people, and for a predominantly White audience (please also note that I am White). No marginalized group is targeted by or implicated in it.
Second, “initiating dialogue” is part of The Horizon’s vision statement, and I believed this article would initiate dialogue surrounding the topic of race and diversity.
Finally, The Horizon’s vision statement also says we aim to “foster an inclusive community.” This article appeared to advance that vision by naming the White experience of privilege. Doing so would validate and acknowledge the different experiences that students of color have in our society and at our College.
These are the reasons I chose to publish the article; that said, I would like to offer my apologies to members of the Westmont community who felt offended by this article. As always, I hope The Horizon’s content will encourage further dialogue amongst members of the Westmont community.