Race Relations and Buggy

ConcernedBlackMan
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Race Relations and Buggy

Postby ConcernedBlackMan » Tue Feb 16, 2016 4:27 am

Hey Everyone,

I am curious to hear alumni thoughts on race relations and how they played out in the context of buggy. In particular how buggy treated black students over the years. I am familiar with what many black buggy alumni and students have said to me but I would like to hear from the perspective of non black buggy alumni and current students. Was Buggy always a welcoming place for black students on campus or was there some initial resistance as usually is the case? Was there mistreatment? Was there full blown racism? You don't have to name names but it would probably be good if you are brave and courageous enough to name which orgs were involved in any of the issues if there were any. This tends to be a very taboo topic on campus and many people at CMU love to forget about incidents of discrimination as if they were isolated incidents and not an actual problem with the school. Having this open dialogue can be helpful in actually bringing this community closer if we are able to talk about these things. We talk a lot about the positives but very rarely about the big negatives. Let's change that!!

-Concerned Black Man

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abordick
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Re: Race Relations and Buggy

Postby abordick » Tue Feb 16, 2016 12:00 pm

Why? How is rehashing sins about the past going to help the present or the future?

ConcernedBlackMan
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Re: Race Relations and Buggy

Postby ConcernedBlackMan » Tue Feb 16, 2016 3:24 pm

Because talking about the mistakes of the past helps us new students avoid them in the future and we can analyse what has changed and what hasn't and take necessary steps to make sure buggy can be the best sport it can be. Many new students have no idea what buggy was like. Being silent or choosing to be ignorant on these issues is a way of condoning the transgressions of the past. This is an uncomfortable subject but a lot of the students who had to go through it or are currently going through it are living uncomfortably every day. Alumni being uncomfortable for a few hours or days after reading this thread and contributing to it won't be as bad as you think.

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Elmo Zoneball
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Re: Race Relations and Buggy

Postby Elmo Zoneball » Thu Feb 18, 2016 11:47 am

Sweepstakes is the ultimate meritocrary; race, ethnicity, looks, religion, creed, etc., have absolutely nothing to do with how fast you can push a buggy, and how fast it rolls.
"I love the smell of solvents in the morning -- they smell like... victory."

ConcernedBlackMan
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Joined: Tue Feb 16, 2016 4:15 am
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Graduation Year: 1920
Real Name: CBM

Re: Race Relations and Buggy

Postby ConcernedBlackMan » Thu Feb 18, 2016 4:47 pm

It should be. That doesn't mean that everyone sees it as such.

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Jerry
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Re: Race Relations and Buggy

Postby Jerry » Thu Feb 18, 2016 5:35 pm

You mentioned being familiar with what black students and alumni have told you. Can you share some of this? I can't really give a good counter-perspective without this context.

To stray from the topic a little, a running joke in CIA during my later years there was that we were only "racist" against half-Asians (due to two unrelated members who were constantly mistaken for each other) and gingers (for some reason, possibly South Park). CIA was predominantly white and Asian during my time on the team, but we had most ethnicities represented, including black. I never put much thought into the team's racial makeup; we'd recruit whoever was interested. I can't recall any instances of racial bias within CIA my time as chair. If any occurred, they were not brought up to me.

aepibuggy
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Re: Race Relations and Buggy

Postby aepibuggy » Thu Feb 18, 2016 6:25 pm

Just looking at the photos from the archives, I'm sure there was racism in the history of buggy (though that may have been a school-wide policy or something - the 1920s photos look pretty white). But at least for recent history, I don't know of anything (except for Compubookie's comments, which have often been racist, sexist, anti-Semitic, anti-LGBT, and had plenty of other issues - though Compubookie has been strongly rebuked for it on this site several times). If buggy is anything as a whole, it tends to be anti-frat or anti-independent (depending on which side you exist on). And I can't say for sure that there isn't racism/sexism/etc. within any individual organization that does buggy, but any of those issues are an organizational one, not a sweepstakes one.

Members of Spirit might be the best to answer the racism questions, since (I would assume) they would be most likely to be affected. Though their history as one of the dominant teams in the 1980s, and having been involved in sweepstakes for 30 years, indicates to me that there hasn't really been an issue, at least since the 80s.

I'll echo what Elmo said, in that I think most people who do buggy don't see things as racial; they see things as race-ial (Thank you, thank you, I'll be here all week).

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Elmo Zoneball
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Re: Race Relations and Buggy

Postby Elmo Zoneball » Fri Feb 19, 2016 12:58 pm

As an aside, who remembers following the OJ Simpson murder trial, the SAE Limo painted to look like a White Ford Bronco with a black fraternity member pushing it on Hill #4, while an army of guys dressed in business suits & ties came running out of Porter Hall wearing Groucho glasses/noses and carrying brief cases, and chased the buggy/pusher up the hill like Alan Dershowitz chasing a prospective client to sign him up?

It was one of the funniest things ever done in the history of Sweepstakes.
"I love the smell of solvents in the morning -- they smell like... victory."


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