The staff editorial is the majority opinion of The Murray State News Editorial Board.
To each and every person who reads this: enough. Regardless of who you are or what you believe, at some point in your life you have more than likely disrespected someone or something you don’t even understand.
The most recent example of this happening on Murray State’s campus was the vandalism of promotional posters for the Muslim Student Organization’s, or MSO, Hijab Day.
The posters were simply encouraging students to find out what it would be like to wear a hijab, the headscarf some Muslim women choose to wear. The event’s purpose was not to convert people or force cultural/religious beliefs onto students – it was to peacefully educate.
However, some students’ senses of superiority were threatened, so they climbed on top of their high horses and anonymously defiled the MSO’s posters with phrases like:
“Hey want to find out what it’s like to be flogged? Stoned, too?”
Excitement for diversity quickly turned into disappointment because of adversity.
Stop. No more.
We can’t keep going on like this. There are too many negative forces in this world for us to become one of them.
Why ignorance thrived in light of an event that strived for awareness, we may never know.
There are hundreds of different religions, faiths and belief systems in this world. According to ReligiousTolerance.org, there are more than 1,500 Christian faith groups in North America alone. Can you imagine how silly it would be if a Catholic walked into a Baptist church, wrote hateful slurs all over the walls and told everyone their religious beliefs were wrong?
Sorry – typo. By “silly” I meant “unnecessary and ignorant.” Much like publicly disrespecting a cultural event you refuse to understand.
There are sexual orientations other than heterosexual and homosexual. There is a difference between sex and gender, and some people feel stuck with the wrong ones. Every country, state and city has a different culture.
These are the facts – this is the infamous “melting pot” that is the United States of America.
Get used to it.
No, we take that back. Don’t just get used to it. Accept it. Embrace it. Educate yourself and strive to learn more about the people you’re supposed to be United with.
According to Merriam-Webster, “united” means, “made one; relating to or produced by joint action; being in agreement.” The words “ignorance,” “intolerance” or “blind disrespect” aren’t included.
One of the student statistics on Murray State’s website is, “our student body represents 40 states, 47 foreign countries and 107 Kentucky counties.”
It is a statistical, factually-based promise that people are going to be different than you.
If that scares you or makes you uncomfortable, check your insecurities and self-assigned privilege at the door. They’re not welcome here.
It’s time to grow up, make new friends and learn new things. This isn’t kindergarten anymore – you should know right from wrong by now. Wake up from nap time and be aware of the beauty and opportunities cultural differences can offer.
President Bob Davies responded to Hijab Day in the best way possible on Instagram: “At Murray State we must embrace our similarities, value our differences and most importantly, respect and learn from all of our encounters and shared moments as that is what makes us humans with a soul, a heart and a mind. That is what Murray State is about.”
That is what Murray State should be about.